- “Narcissistic personality disorder is named for Narcissus, from Greek mythology, who fell in love with his own reflection. Freud used the term to describe persons who were self-absorbed, and psychoanalysts have focused on the narcissist’s need to bolster his or her self-esteem through grandiose fantasy, exaggerated ambition, exhibitionism, and feelings of entitlement.”—Donald W. Black
Narcissists are often unaware of what they are doing. They do have feelings. While they are manipulative it is largely subconscious. A Sociopath is always conscious and are in need of being in control of their reality, and others who are part of their constructed reality.
There may not be much difference at times and we should not limit Narcissism to the extreme version of Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Narcissism involves arrogant, manipulative, selfish, power motives, and vanity.
Narcissist can appear to change their identity because they have no fixed identity of their own. This like sociopaths may be the result of unresolved trauma or a life growing up with other people who project their personality into the tender emerging individual.
How do you know a narcissist is not a vampire?
- Their love of mirrors.
“Though they are quick to put others down, unhealthy narcissists view themselves in absolutely positive terms.”—Daniel Goleman
What does a narcissist feel when they make a mistake?
“There’s a reason narcissists don’t learn from mistakes and that’s because they never get past the first step which is admitting that they made one.”—Jeffrey Kluger
Narcissist never claim responsibility for what they have done.
The Narcissist can feel their life is wasted and may desire subconsciously to create their-self over in someone else person. They will show no remorse in changing by abuse another child believing that their redemption will be through another, even by revenge they may seek redemption.
“He that falls in love with himself will have no rivals.”—Benjamin Franklin
Related personality traits include: Psychopathy, Machiavellianism. Narcissists tend to have high self-esteem.
“The narcissist devours people, consumes their output, and casts the empty, writhing shells aside.” —Sam Vaknin
Machiavellianism is "the employment of cunning and duplicity in statecraft or in general conduct".
The word comes from the Italian Renaissance diplomat and writer Niccolò Machiavelli Wrote The Prince.
In modern psychology, Machiavellianism is one of the dark triad personalities, characterized by a duplicitous interpersonal style, a cynical disregard for morality and a focus on self-interest and personal gain.
Machiavellianism is also a term that some social and personality psychologists use to describe a person's tendency to be unemotional, and therefore able to detach him or herself from conventional morality and hence to deceive and manipulate others.
In the 1960s, Richard Christie and Florence L. Geis developed a test for measuring a person's level of Machiavellianism (sometimes referred to as the Machiavelli test). Their Mach - IV test, a twenty-statement personality survey, became the standard self-assessment tool of Machiavellianism.
Psychopathy, also known as—though sometimes differentiated from—sociopathy. is traditionally defined as a personality disorder with symptoms such as antisocial behavior, diminished empathy and remorse, and disinhibited or bold behavior.
Psychopathy Socially, it expresses extensive callous and manipulative self-serving behaviors with no regard for others, and often is associated with repeated delinquency, crime and violence, but may also present itself in other, maybe even successful social settings. Mentally, impairments in processes related to affect (emotion) and cognition, particularly socially related mental processes,
- “A sociopath is one who sees others as impersonal objects to be manipulated to fulfill their own narcissistic needs without any regard for the hurtful consequences of their selfish actions.”—R. Alan Woods
The draw of the Narcissist
Why are some people drawn to and draw narcissist?
Is their something missing in a narcissist that you have and he or she can get or desires?
- Nice people draw the narcissist like a moth to a flame.
People who do not like to criticize anyone and generally promote the positive characteristics of others are particularly attractive.
Considerate people who are quick to help or serve others are seen as particularly useful. If they have become insecure enough to have fear of being disliked the narcissist is drawn to them like flies to sugar.
“Out of all the addictions in the world, attention is slowly but surely becoming one of the most dangerous.”—Saahil Prem
Self reliant people who hate to inconvenience others or be a burden. The narcissist may be dependent upon this self reliance because they are just the opposite. A narcissist may seldom feel that they are in control even though they are often control freaks. They fear that they are loosing control even when they are not. This may make them very possessive, manifesting stalker tendencies.
- “I think a lot of self-importance is a product of fear. And fear, living in sort of an un-self-examined fear-based life, tends to lead to narcissism and self-importance.”—Moby
Someone who appears to be in control will draw the narcissists like the wolf to little red ridinghood.
This is also attractive because someone in control will make few demands on the narcissists. How many men or women seem to shoulder any of your problems only to be abused by their spouse.
Any thing that impresses the narcissist or they admire they want and want control of it. They may become totally dependent upon their victim with loving appreciation but that love is like the a cowboy has for a thick steak.
Your willingness to serve them and their needs makes you a revolving satellite in their personal solar system.
- “Narcissistic people are always struggling with the fact that the rest of the world doesn’t revolve around them.”
People who are empathetic and can feel what others are feeling are the envy of narcissists but in a love hate sort of way. Narcissists want to think or at least have others believe that they are empathetic. This may be because they are missing the ability to be naturally empathetic.
Narcissists have few boundaries in the sense that everyone is a revolving part of their personal universe. They do not actually feel your pain but they imagine that they do.
- “It is not love that should be depicted as blind, but self-love.”—Voltaire
Their state of mind may be planted when they are very young and because of trauma they are never able to overcome the need to complete the next stage after the original symbiotic relationship [ the relationship between an infant and its mother or father in which the infant is dependent on the parent both physically and emotionally.] with parents and the world around them.
Empaths are often considerate to the point of self-sacrifice which feeds the god or goddess complex of the narcissist.
The only thing the narcissist share is their pain and dark emotions of anger and hate because the part of them that could feel these things are buried away in their own denial.
Tactics of a Malignant Narcissist
Malignant narcissists and psychopaths will ultimately demean, exploit, and hurt anyone who comes into relationship with them.
They have a variety of tactics that they may employ to control others while they seek to escape accountability for their actions. Almost everyone can be infected with to some degree with a narcissist spirit from time to time. If you see yourself manifesting these tactics or they are used on you that can be a good thing because you see it. A Malignant narcissists will not see it until they deal with the root cause which is unforgiveness and lack of repentance. Also forgiveness and repentance are the best tactics against a Malignant narcissists.
Projection is a defense mechanism used by the narcissist to displace responsibility of their position or actions by attributing them to others and avoid personal accountability.
The narcissist project their abuse in others rather than acknowledge their own flaws, imperfections and wrongdoings, malignant narcissists and sociopaths opt to dump their own traits on their unsuspecting suspects in a way that is painful and excessively cruel. Instead of admitting that they are needy, dependent and dishonest they will accuse others of those faults.
They will be guilty of what they try to make others feel guilty and ashamed. This is a way for a narcissist to project any toxic shame they have about themselves onto another. Blame or similar faults others are always held up rather than personal objectivity of themselves. They are always deflecting and blame-shifting.
Don't be a party to this process but do not challenge their delusion without being willing to suffer their attack. If you can see without judgment that the narcissist is trapped in their own ego your none reaction and loving observation may shed enough light that they be willing to see the truth. Do not be sucked into empathetic support or you find yourself less attractive as a person and the subject of their attacks.
Irrational positions and conversation, circular logic, word babble that seem to produce nothing but confusion are common with both sociopaths and malignant narcissists. Because of their personal delusion they may have trouble staying on topic and commonly change the subject rather than follow the facts or deal with the real issue. The narcissist may prefer to attack any opposition or opposing opinion, whether real or imagined, with discrediting ad hominems or fictional accusations. This may lead to frustration and even the ill effects of genuine guilt on their part. Do not succumb or sucked into their drama, forgive their abuse.
Malignant narcissists try to appear as intellectual geniuses but make leaps of logic and swamps of assumptions rather than detailed reasoning. They see the projected picture of their truth disregarding differing perspective, dismissing inconvenient facts and anyone who presents those facts or elements.
Unsupported assumptions are emphasized as validating any perspective or point that vaguely supports their perspective. Because there are liars in the world any testimony that contradicts their position is labeled false.
Cruel claims that their partner never listens, is never satisfied or is just too sensitive and unreasonable ends the narrative. The may deliberately accuse you of ideas and opinions or feelings that are not yours or even absurd. This is often a part of a plan to “gaslight” you, drawing you into a defensive position drawing you into an unwinnable argument.
“Gaslighting” is a manipulative tactic that can be described in different variations of three words: “That didn’t happen,” “You imagined it,” and “Are you crazy?” Gaslighting is perhaps one of the most insidious manipulative tactics out there because it works to distort and erode your sense of reality; it eats away at your ability to trust yourself and inevitably disables you from feeling justified in calling out abuse and mistreatment. This creates doubt.
Keeping you doubting and off guard by acts of kindness and caring and then shifting the mood through a variety of ways can hold out hope only to dash it to pieces. They will sabotage good times or feelings or even the memory of them and then make it your fault.
While a willingness to forgive abuse and the realization that the abuser is trapped in the trauma of their malignancy may make these condition more bearable unless the narcissist is willing to see some of these traits distancing yourself may be the only solution.
Remember you may have been drawn to this relationship, not by love, but by compulsion. You may have been manipulated by false charm, gifts and gratuities until you were seduced and courted, only to be betrayed and captured in an abusive relationship of control and possession. There maybe no reason to remain a hostage if the narcissist can see no reason to see, seek help and change. If they think it is everyone else's problem there will be no real change.
There is a difference between constructive and destructive criticism. Are they really desiring to help or just put you down. They are constantly raising the standards which you may never be able to meet even if you do. They will sour every success stealing or dampening your thunder.
Malignant narcissists can do more than call you names, degrade and belittle you. Besides making your life miserable they can be dangerous to your life itself. If their control is beginning to slip away as you began to heal your part of the relationship their abuse may become physical. This threat can escalate rapidly and take many forms of envy, jealousy, possessiveness and stalking.
You may need support from others who understand or you may need to distance yourself. And you may need to document your observations independently and with the witness of others.
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