Narcissistic Victim Syndrome

A person with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) displays patterns of deviant behaviour that can create carnage for those around them (spouse, children, parents, siblings, friends, colleagues, peers, etc). Narcissistic Victim Abuse is abuse that has been caused by someone with this personality disorder. The NPD is not often medically diagnosed, so that the narcissistic individual goes undetected in society (home, work-place, organizations, social settings) and the victim’s plight unrecognised.

A person with NPD has an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for attention and admiration, and a strong sense of entitlement. They believe they are superior and have little regard for the feelings of others. As a child, a healthy self-esteem (true self) did not develop in the narcissist so they built up defences to create a ‘false self’ in public. This is akin to wearing a public mask. Wearing the mask is not only emotionally exhausting, it also means that the narcissist is constantly on guard at being found out. They become overly sensitive to narcissistic injury which is any perceived threat (real or imagined) to the narcissist’s self-esteem or self-worth. In order to maintain their illusion and protect their ‘false self’ they seek narcissistic supply from unsuspecting victims.

The narcissist views people as objects which can feed their needs (known as ‘sources of narcissistic supply’). The narcissist will use any tactic, without guilt, empathy or conscience, to make sure they get their narcissistic supply and their needs are met. Narcissistic supply comes from public attention such as fame, celebrity, notoriety, or infamy or private attention such as admiration, flattery, acclaim, fear, or even repulsion. Regular bearers of narcissistic supply include the spouse, children, friends, colleagues, partners and clients. Anything that acts as a status symbol that attracts attention and admiration for the narcissist is narcissistic supply, for example, a flashy car, expensive property, designer clothes, being a member of a church, cult, club, or a business.

With an inflated sense of their own superiority, power and control, the narcissist renders themselves susceptible to all sorts of obsessions, compulsions, and addictions, for example, addiction to: narcissistic supply, grandiosity, control, power, rage, perfectionism, attention, fame etc. The devastating impact of these addictions on their significant others can result in Narcissistic Victim Syndrome. Most victims present with no idea about what has happened to them.

Narcissistic abuse is insidious because the abuse is covert, cunning and indirect. Narcissists go to great pains to avoid being observed publicly as being abusive. The Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde behaviour creates fear, distress, confusion, inner turmoil, and chaos for the victim. The constant ‘walking on eggshells’ and attempting to avoid further conflict can be crippling. To complicate matters a narcissist is rarely medically diagnosed and often goes undetected in society (home, work, organisations, and social settings).

For whatever the reason the victim entered the Dance of the Narcissist (a behaviour known as Co-Dependency) so that in the dance there was both: 1) a pleaser/fixer (victim) and; 2) a taker/controller (narcissist/addict).

Victims present when they feel like they can’t cope. They are unaware that they have been living or working in a war zone. No-one has mentioned Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) or narcissistic abuse to them. Victims of this narcissistic abuse often display a set, or cluster, of symptoms due to this physical, mental, emotional or spiritual abuse. In Narcissistic Victim Syndrome you are looking for a cluster of symptoms to emerge, many are the symptoms of trauma (avoidance behaviour, loss of interest, feeling detached, sense of a limited future, sleeping or eating difficulties, irritability, hyper-vigilance, easily startled, flashbacks, hopelessness, psychosomatic illnesses, self-harming, thoughts of suicide etc). Narcissistic abuse victims express feelings of humiliation and shame, and apt to self-blame. They have learned to take responsibility for the narcissist’s behaviour because they are constantly told the problem is their fault. Some victims develop Stockholm Syndrome and want to support, defend, and love the abuser despite what they have gone through.

Victims tend to ‘dissociate’ or detach from their emotions, body, or surroundings. Living in a war zone where all forms of power and control are used against you (intimidation; emotional, physical and mental abuse; isolation, economic abuse, sexual abuse, coercion, control etc), the threat of abuse is always present. Dissociation is an automatic coping mechanism against overwhelming stress.

Victims are often victimized by more than one person. They often internalize that something is wrong with them, that they deserve this kind of abuse, and then resign themselves to their fate. Victims may not have reached their potential in their personal or professional lives because they always have to stand in the shadow of their aggressor, and not upstage them. They learn to live in the shadows without knowing why.

Victims of narcissistic abuse often appear uncertain of themselves, constantly seeking clarification that they haven’t made a mistake or misheard something. Confidence may be so low that they have trouble making simple decisions. They will not be aware that this is caused by an abusive technique called ‘gaslighting’. Gaslighting is a technique of psychological abuse used by narcissists to instil confusion and anxiety in their victim to the point where they no longer trust their own memory, perception or judgment. With gaslighting, the victim initially notices that something happens that is odd, but they don’t believe it. This moves to defence as the victim fights against the manipulation. Confusion sets in after incessant comments such as: ‘You’re too sensitive’, ‘You’re crazy’, ‘You’re imagining things’ or ‘I never said that.’ Gradually, the victim cannot trust their own perceptions and doubt themselves. This often leads to depression. Broken and unable to trust themselves, they isolate themselves further. The victim now doubts everything about themselves, their thoughts and opinions, their ideas and ideals. They become co-dependent on the abuser for their reality.

Victims need validation and education about what has happened to them. They need information about the medical condition of Narcissistic Personality Disorder and its toxicity in relationships. They need education about how they have contributed to their situation through co-dependence. They need therapy to deal with symptoms. They will need support to remove themselves from their narcissistic relationship, and to not repeat the cycle of abuse in their next relationship. One of their greatest challenges may come from not being believed by significant others, either because these others have not seen the private face of the narcissist or because they themselves are in the narcissist’s thrall.

194 comments ↓

#1 Rose on 10.23.12 at 10:50 am

Wow I was really hooked by this blog when I read the bit about “your crazy, your imagining things, or I didn’t say that”. it is exactly the words I hear day in day out. thanks for this I will work on staying strong and not being a victim!

#2 Jeni on 10.23.12 at 11:11 am

The more I learn about narcissism and its extreme form of NPD the more I realise it is such a convoluted and complicated condition, made worse by its invisibility in our society. Please share this with anyone you feel may relate to Narcissistic Victim Syndrome. It may be the first step to validation.
All the best Rose!

#3 Danielle on 11.04.12 at 11:24 pm

I think I am a mother of two NDP children (I have three children).
I read that I indeed may be the source of this disorder (e.g. I was too strict/did not show love/demanded too much/did not acknowledge achievments and so on.)
I am full of guilt over this, I try to overcompensate, I feel deprressed, have thoughts of suicide – but to mask it as a car accident so as not to harm them.
Life is becoming unbearable, is there anything I can do?
I believe I had a ndp mother as well but this I solved by severing all unnecessary contact with her, something I cannot possibly do with my own children.
Is it my fault? Any advice?
Thank you.

#4 Jeni Mawter on 11.05.12 at 12:28 pm

Hi Danielle,

Firstly, I must say I think you are amazing for coming this far in trying to understand your family dynamics and coping with everything. From my experience, NPD is poorly understood and often goes unrecognised, so to have some knowledge and insights into this is a great thing.

Secondly, because you have this insight it means you have empathy for your family which is also a great thing. And, no, you should not feel guilty. I don’t know how old your children are but until you seek and receive the right sort of help I feel it’s too soon to sever a relationship with them. Go to your doctor and ask for a referral to a psychiatrist/psychologist/counsellor who has experience with NPD. Join online communities to speak to others who also have experienced NPD. Find out how they’ve dealt with things and coped. I’ve found these online groups remarkably supportive.

Thirdly, this is NOT your fault. You have been drawn into this crazy life simply because of your birth. Everyone develops coping mechansims. It’s called survival. Severing contact with your NPD mother is survival. Already you’ve started to ask questions and seek information which is a huge step forward and hopefully validates your experiences and relieves your guilt.

I sincerely believe you can work on your relationship with your children, even if it’s just flagging the NPD, educating them about it, and possibly discussing their behaviours that give you the most concern.

My heart goes out to you as NPD is an insidious and cruel personality disorder to deal with – especially in multiples. You need people to help you who understand this. A lot of helping professionals do not. Find one who does.

I can fully understand your despair at times. Please keep in touch and let me know how you’re doing.

#5 Deb on 11.06.12 at 6:37 am

I am so very happy to have found your blog. I’m exhausted from living with a narcissist for the last 20 plus years. I have lost myself in the process and this situation is progressively getting worse. I didn’t even know what this was until a few years ago when a close friend of mine explained it to me. I can’t go on like this, it has worn me down big time.

#6 Jeni Mawter on 11.06.12 at 10:06 am

Hey Deb,

After 20 years I’m not surprised you’re exhausted! And I’m not surprised you’ve ‘lost’ yourself. What I am surprised is how rampant this condition is and how little is known about it in our communities. When I first learned about NPD it was like an epiphany. Suddenly so many confusing and hurful things made sense. But even though I have been reading and learning about narcissism for a few years now, I’m still finding out things I didn’t know.

As I continue to learn, I’ll continue to share. I hope you find a place of peace and a place to re-charge. Please keep in touch.

Hugs to you.

#7 Kim on 11.09.12 at 5:36 pm

Hello Jenny, Great work you are doing here and so well articulated about NPD abuse and its impact on victims, however, can I just say that many of us have never ever been co-dependents or took any part in what constitutes the covert cunning abuse that we don’t even know is happening to us.
We have been fooled, totally…especially if they are superb actors and pathalogically intelligent and in defence of all victims, I think I can safely say we should do everything we can to keep it clear that we were targeted, used, conned and fooled by a wolf in sheeps clothing…most of us who have had families with NPD/ASPDs would always if empaths, want their families to work, to believe in what is being portrayed (acted) towards us…..in my position, I knew my NH had a smoking and drinking problem, did not ever suspect a drug problem nor did I suspect that he was a psychopath….thats how good he was….I know I am no dummy, but I certainly am no co-dependent either and would never want myself portrayed as on….I was just wanting to be a loving supportive wife and Mother who could work part time to keep up and contribute with the bills, all the whilst, he NH, was plotting against me (UNBEKNOWN) …this is normal desires for any woman wanting the best for her family. It is not what I would class as co-dependent or worthy of self blame. Victims do indeed need validation, sadly it is under-recognised and under-validated….often many symptoms that make those abused revictimised all over again.

#8 Jeni on 11.10.12 at 2:34 pm

Hi Kim,

Lovely to hear from you and thanks for your comments. It is obvious that NPD is a complex and convoluted disorder that presents in very different ways bringing very different consequences. This makes it such a challenge for individuals, families, workplaces and communities. Yet despite its toxicity, it often is invisible. The best we can do is share – share our stories, our experiences and our knowledge in the hope it will help those who struggle.

Thank you for sharing!

#9 Steven on 12.15.12 at 4:28 pm

My ex girlfriend has convinced me I am a covert narcissist. She said the first few months she was going insane as to how I could have no empathy. Meanwhile, I did have doubts about her intentions (money- which is my own insecurity w women based on past)and there was something inexplicable I did not trust initially (we’ve dated off and on for 4 years, her always leaving, me always spiraling into depression, her always asking me back, me always jumping at the occasion right away), but I’ve always loved her and treated her the best I knew how. Which was in my mind was really giving and genuine and caring. I am also so far from the perfect boyfriend. I can think of specific examples my distrust in her has led me to not be there. Love cannot truly be real without trust and I take responsibility for bringing that negativity to the relationship. But she convinced herself that I had absolutely no empathy whatsoever. None. She was going ‘insane with codependency’ to the extent she needed for her own mental health to seek counsel online and w friends. She is a psychology major and she is incredibly intelligent. By this time, despite all the heartache I impose after she leaves and how much I thought she was the one- her erratic behavior and my inability to do anything right made me check out of the relationship. I made this clear to her, but we still decided to prolong the relationship. At which time she made a complete 180. She was showering me w affection, being super nice- it was the most unusual thing but instead of embracing it I was still suspicious. Which is insane on my part! It’s what I always wanted and I didn’t trust it. Then I kissed another girl. I was unfaithful. She found out. She told me that she has been doing research for her own sanity and discovered 100% without a doubt that I indeed have covert narcissism. I have been diagnosed with avoidance and dependence in a clinical setting, but never anything like that (which didn’t surprise her because we would never allow a therapist to see our true self, or lack there of- we are that protective of our sick selves). It is malignant and she said I am incapable of marriage. Ever with anyone. I started researching the affliction myself online and I soon thereafter had the worst psychological snap in my life. I spiraled. I have convinced myself it is true. I know if it were not true, I would not have reacted so strongly to the diagnosis. Needless to say, shortly after her diagnosis, the relationship got sour real quick and ended. All because I carried out everything the diagnosis entails. Even now, stumbling across ‘victims of narcissism’ I feel I am playing the victim, because I’m the narcissist and that’s what the narcissist does.

I refuse to believe I am this monster, but if she’s right and I am, I don’t want to repress it and not seek help. Because I need love and I need to know I am capable of supplying it too. I am not trying to manipulate this post for some sort of validation (something she said I do wiyh others to evoke pity). this is only my perspective. I had many doubts as to her involvement w other men in our relationship, but as far as I know she never cheated. I kissed another woman. I cheated. Also she is in AA. I used to be but no longer am and can think of multiple times my drinking has been an issue.

I wish there was a way to determine whether I am infact the narcissist or if I have been the victim of one all along by her projections. i am very susceptible and she’s convinced me of things that weren’t true in the past. This has been the most psychologically stimulating year of my life. I’m left so confused.

#10 Jeni on 12.17.12 at 12:34 pm

Hi Steven,

I am so sorry to read of your distress and struggles, and hope 2013 brings you more enlightenment and peace than this year has.

Firstly, you should know I am not a psychologist or counsellor so my blog is not from a professional’s perspective. Having said that, I have been learning about Narcissism and NPD for about 7 – 8 years now so have gained a reasonable amount of knowledge which I will continue to share with the community, but I would still highly recommend you finding a health care worker experienced with narcissism and all its insidiousness. From my experience, they are rare.

Secondly, it’s obvious that you are feeling traumatised by your relationship and I think it’s fantastic you are seeking help. Here’s my layperson’s thoughts on reading your comments…

Read and learn as much about NPD as you can so that you can identify the narcissists many and varied tactics and see if they ring any bells for you. You’ve mentioned projection but there are a myriad of others. Things such as lying, gas lighting, blaming, hypersensitivity to perceived criticism, does not respect boundaries, controlling, interpersonally exploitive etc etc etc.

No not worry about labels. Focus on behaviours and feelings, rather than a label. From my understanding people with NPD never identify themselves as such due to poor insight and an inability to empathise. The fact that you are tying yourself in knots and worrying about being a narcissist would make me suspect that you are not!

Seek other sharing communities of people who are dealing with a narcissist or NPD in their lives. The advice, support, sharing is invaluable. Especially, the validation of ‘self’ and the fact that, ‘No, you are not crazy!’

#11 Bec on 12.26.12 at 11:48 pm

I am currently in a marriage to a NDP. Word for word your blog is him.. We have a 5 yr old together who has Aspergers., I am currently planning to leave this marriage but need to carefully as he is from a different country to me…our son is scared of him:(
Every time I say we should sell house and separate he says good but then does a 360 and wants to keep trying. He puts me down all the time and blames me for everything. Unused to be this confident person with a great career., I have left 1 jobs because I could not cope..I am on edge all the time ..can anyone give me help As how to move out of this?

#12 Jeni Mawter on 12.28.12 at 11:29 am

Hi Bec,

I’m not surprised that you can relate to this blog and hope this validates how you’re feeling. You’ve certainly got a lot to deal with in terms of your marriage and your son. But most of all, you’ve got to protect and be true to yourself. No more leaching of confidence!

I feel you need a support person/group behind you in order to decide how to proceed and to then follow through with your decisions. This isn’t something you can do in isolation. The more people who are aware of your issues/needs and who are willing to provide a supportive (not judgemental) role the better.

Try and find others experienced with NPD and learn from their experiences. This includes both professionals as well as everyday people struggling with the toxicity of a narcissist in their lives.

I wish you well in your endeavours and hope 2013 brings you to a place where you feel safe!

#13 Katie on 12.31.12 at 11:04 am

Thank you for this excellent article. I’ve been in a living nightmare world of a Jekyll/Hyde narcissist for the past 5 years. I have tried various times to break free, but of course I’ve been “hovered” back in and told that everything I think or believe is wrong, defective, hypersensitive and I must be crazy. I’ve been lied to cheated on, ignored, and verbally abused. I’ve also experienced some physical aggression and of course, took him back, and he made me think it must be my fault. He cannot accept responsibility and is now compulsive with his hobbies to ignore issues or the relationships. It’s a losing battle, and I have finally got the point he will NEVER change BC he is a man Eithout fault….in his mind, of course. He blames me for absolutely everything and I can never do anything right. Please continue your good work on this blog, as reading it has strengthened my resolve and I now know I’m not alone.

#14 Jeni Mawter on 12.31.12 at 3:02 pm

Hi Katie.

Hugs to you. When everyone shares their story it’s amazing how similar they all are. There is a whole community of survivors for you to tap into ‘out there’. And many who’ve yet to have their lightbulb moment. I encourage you to share this with your family and friends.

Wishing you peace in 2013!

#15 Bree on 01.02.13 at 12:57 pm

I suspect my boyfriend is a narcissist or has NPD- not sure how different they are. He is highly intelligent and has admitted to being partly narcissistic. He was an A.D.H.D child (undiagnosed) or similar and had an abusive father. He also has had trouble sleeping since his teens which has prgressed to insomnia. I suspected he was ‘different’ quite early on (which seemed to fit in which his notions of superiority which I admired) here’s why
-i noticed he drank too much,
-he didn’t care much about what I had to say, initially asking me questions about myself to feign interest but during all other conversations he would skip over what I say and continue on with his points. This is ongoing, it is ALL about him
-The ‘i’m right, i’m the man’, approach, alpha male aspect. He says he is older more worldly, he knows things I don’t realise yet, an attitude he uses to devalue any relationship issue I bring up.
-Not validating any of my feelings, disagreeing with my view on my own feelings, not empathising at all causing hours of discussion/arguing.
-Complete inability to empathise with me and not wanting to. Never his fault
-Draining me of energy, I’m normally a night owl but feel so tired at the end of the day that I’ve been turning in hours earlier since being with him.
-Also I have sensed for a while there isn’t real love coming from him, or that he thinks of me much, he is too absorbed in his own life and own mind, his anxiety and his lack of sleep.
-I wondered whether he was able to love at all, if he is a Narcissist that would then make sense.
-I have spent the last 3 months perpetually puzzled (after a great first three – he was never over the top as I have read narcissitic can be initially, it was just a normal beginning). My friends say I am distant and constantly in thought.
-My thoughts are always on him and trying to work out what is going on.
-Why the need to always hang out with his group of friend (PNS?) and always prioritising them and their functions over time with me?
-Being unsure as to if and when he would want to spend time with me. Getting a last minute phone call to see if I was free, then when I ask for more notice in future he responds by saying he is not a planner (even though he was initially)
-Not wanting me around as much anymore, not giving me any emotion.
-States he has withdrawn from partners sexually and ‘gone into his shell’ when they ‘push him too far’ (this hasnt happened with me yet)
-He’s very maudlin and can get into these melancholy moods thinking about his home country.
-He always needs to have music on or some type of background noise.
-There has been some gaslighting, where I’ve noticed my things at his house have bene hidden or once when I noticed (or did I?) my hair shampoo had been replaced with a new one as the protective seal was left on it. These are all met with vehement denial and he vehemently denies ever cheating or intending to cheat.
-Preoccupation with ex girlfriends, he looks up his ex girlfriends via social media (surely its too early in the relationship for him to be doing that) which makes me think he still pines (can they pine?) for them even though they are the ones he brings up as examples of ‘bad ‘ girlfriends’ due to their outbursts (of frustration in my view) he highlights to me how all of his exes would get back with him with just ne phonecall (why is this important for him to say?)
-I have also found his looking up online dating sites (he doesnt appear to contact them, only look) When i went to walk out on him over this he cried (crocodile tears?) and swore on his fathers grave it was a habit and it meant nothing to him.
-Paranoid, some OCD aspects
-Resentful towards his mother and past occurrences but still looks after her financially and gives her time
-Extremely vengeful, vengeful to the death attitude
-Criticised me often making me feel insecure then says they are not faults to me there is perfection in imperfection (then why say it)
-Very rarely compliments me except for a month when I was overseas. Distance seems to inspire something in him as he has had a few long distance girlfriends too. I seem to get the most out of him when I am unavailable
-Lacks motivation, has big goals but doesnt achieve them and makes excuses for it.
-Does brain puzzles every day and spends a heap of time on the phone to people, (I guess to calm his mind down which he says is always thinking a million things)

He says he has my best interests at heart and likes to spoil me at expensive restaurants (not with gifts, no birthday or christmas present as he doesn believe in them) I have to beg and plead him to attend functions in my own life, but then he gets resentful when I don’t invite him to some. I desperately want him the be ‘the one’ (a notion he doesn’t believe in) but he has already made me lose ‘my spark’ so to speak I can’t see this man making me happy (what is happiness? he would ask me). Do you think he has NPD? He doesnt exhibit the ‘taking advantage to others’ trait, in fact would do anything to anyone and is perhaps even overly generous. He also isnt obviously jealous, I’ve noticed it a little but not an issue. Also he doesn’t want to control me as I have read some narcs do. Also the declaration of love and over the top relationship behaviour that marcs exhibit never happened.. SO confused

#16 Jeni on 01.03.13 at 9:17 pm

Hi Bree,

Wow, you sure have a relationship with a complex individual and hats off to you for trying to make sense of it all. I’m amazed at how in-depth your insights are. You must be incredibly observant and intuitive.

In the large picture I don’t think it matters whether or not your boyfriend fits the mould of NPD or whether he just falls a long way along the continuum of narcissism, I guess the bottom line is ‘you’. Where do you fit in the picture? Does it come at a cost (happiness, spark)? Is it a cost you’re prepared to pay long-term? Only you can answer.

I feel you could use some contemplative time – time to step back and try and grasp some objectivity – before you decide the right path for you. I wish you peace and happiness.

Jeni

#17 Cally on 01.06.13 at 7:13 am

Hi,
I left the NPD man – Peter- I was married to 22 years ago. After he met his current wife (who has Borderline Personality Disorder) he forbade ANY contact between his family (in including his brother and sisters, and me … my two little girls were not allowed to even mention me when they were at his house! Yesterday was our daughter’s wedding day. At the reception, Peter’s brother and I had a conversation ( we had been friends and room mates at university). Later, as I was dancing, Peter came right up to me and told me: ‘Leave my f…ing family alone, you psychopathic bitch!’ I turned away and kept dancing as if nothing had happened. I learned later that his mad wife had stormed out and go e home as she was so in ended that his brother had spoken to me! Towards the end of the evening, I went to the bar to get a drink. Fortunately, my husband Dan saw Peter running -yes, running – after me, and came to my rescue as Peter was once again in my face and hurling abuse. He and my older daughter and her husband managed to get him to go back to his table. Ironically, this man is a Clinical Psychologist! But what has saddened me deeply is that my daughters were both hurt and upset, and also are angry with me for talking to his brother and ‘provoking’ the incident. Thank God I left him all those years ago. I experienced many of the victim symptoms you describe. Now I realise that he is a sick and twisted person who will nurse his hatred for me ( for leaving and humiliating him) until the day he dies.
I appreciate the opportunity to write about all this, as it is swirling around my mind, making me unhappy
Cally

#18 Jeni on 01.14.13 at 8:56 pm

Hi Cally,

What a horrible turn of events for you at your daughter’s wedding! I can understand how hurt and upset you feel and am sorry your daughter’s are projecting their anger at you. Hopefully in time they will appreciate it is unfounded. In the meantime, it sounds like your husband is a wonderful support person for you and someone to appreciate in your life.

I can see that your daughters are in a tricky situation, no-one wins with these personalities and social dynamics. You can understand the recommendation for ‘No Contact’ when you leave someone with NPD. I hope you and your girls find a way to negotiate the most peaceful path for all.

Jeni

#19 Jeni on 01.14.13 at 8:57 pm

Hi Cally,

What a horrible turn of events for you at your daughter’s wedding! I can understand how hurt and upset you feel and am sorry your daughters are projecting their anger at you. Hopefully in time they will appreciate it is unfounded. In the meantime, it sounds like your husband is a wonderful support person for you and someone to appreciate in your life.

I can see that your daughters are in a tricky situation, no-one wins with these personalities and social dynamics. You can understand the recommendation for ‘No Contact’ when you leave someone with NPD. I hope you and your girls find a way to negotiate the most peaceful path for all.

Jeni

#20 Kristina Taylor on 01.17.13 at 12:24 am

Hi
I’ve been separated form my ex for 18 days. I believe he was also a narc from what I have researched so far. In the beginning he swept me off my feet, buying me beautiful flowers, cooking me 3 course meals (and that was only 3 dates in!). He then started to play the mind games, if I did something he didn’t like, i.e. crying, saying my feelings were hurt by his actions or for leaving me on top of a hill in the middle of nowhere (I wasn’t supposed to be upset or angry about that!) then he would not call or text me for days. I’d be going out of my mind, wondering why, what had I done that was so awful. We broke up three times and each time I kept contact (I felt I couldn’t be without him) and last went back for a fourth time in July last year. I was different this time though, I realise I have my own insecurities and issues from bullying at school and previous bad relationships, but I was having therapy and getting to accept that actually I’m ok! I stood up to him, reacted differently, didn’t get upset when he ignored my texts, I just carried on with my life as normal. Until, I wasn’t feeling well Xmas Eve and as I wasn’t giving him all my attention and was huddled in my dressing gown in bed (after he withdrew his arm from around me) as I felt cold; Xmas Day he said he wasn’t sure if he wanted to be on his own, so I told him I know how this plays out, I go home, you don’t speak to me for days, I get upset but you make out I’m playing the victim, etc or lets just enjoy the day and make me a coffee; I thought I’d sussed out how to handle him, but I think he realised I was on to his games and he couldn’t deceive me anymore! I had a rant about a text from my brother Boxing night and had to go back out collect some stuff from my bro. He text me not to come back and see him Friday, but then he said he wasn’t well and I didn’t see him at all. Instead I got a dumping note in a carrier bag by my car the Saturday before New Year. He controlled the whole relationship and then blamed me for everything, nothing was his fault. We had to watch what he wanted , go where he wanted , eat what he wanted, everything on his terms. My feelings and how I felt never mattered, never validated, it was just me being sensitive. I now realise I was duped by a narc! If I had known the signs at the beginning and listened to my instincts….but I won’t let him beat me down. I’m going to continue getting to know myself and although right now it hurts like hell, I know I will be happier without him in my life.
Thanks for the rant :)
Krissy x

#21 Aaron on 01.17.13 at 6:58 pm

Hi Jeni,

Thanks for this insightful article. My wife and I recently had a couple staying in our house who exhibited profoundly the NPD/victim scenario and it was very disturbing to witness and participate in.

My question to you is can you suggest how to broach this subject with the victim without alienating them and causing them to push back/away? I want to help but I don’t want to make a big mistake and lose that person by upsetting them instead of helping.

Many thanks
Aaron

#22 Jeni Mawter on 01.18.13 at 7:27 pm

Hi Aaron,

From my experience, unless a victim is seeking answers/solutions to their situation, they will not be receptive to anything you say/do.

You could, however, flag with them that you noticed something was amiss and ask if they want to talk about it.

Due to many reasons (including co-dependency for some) it’s extremely hard for a victim to take the steps to initiate change.

Good luck and don’t give up on them!

Warm regards,

Jeni

#23 Jeni Mawter on 01.18.13 at 7:31 pm

To Krissy,
Hey Krissy!

You Go, Girl!!!

And keep going till he’s permanently out of your life.

Congratulations and hugs for you courage.

Jeni

#24 Lorraine thompson on 02.03.13 at 1:33 am

I have been a victim still am and children i need to join this group asap .

#25 Orpha on 02.03.13 at 11:03 am

WoW!! I had to leave! I had to take my daughter out of that narcissistic living situation. I knew something was not right for so long. My voice was not tended to and chose not to be the “tool” for his end goal. I had to play the game so as not to make him aware of my plan to secretly escape. I plan to get a restraining order. He neglected our daughter’s education and I knew I had to leave. It’s better late than never. I look forward to rebuilding my soul’s core. He kept me financially poor. He controlled the environment and people I would see. The few friends I would make he would have pessimistic behaviors and I would not see them again. He’s says he accepts me not going back to him but I feel I need to watch my back. I’m thankful for fate and how a friend was a sounding board to my feelings.

#26 Jeni Mawter on 02.03.13 at 12:33 pm

Hi Lorraine,

Great to hear from you and hugs to you and your children. Pls feel free to speak out as you wish. The more stories we share, the less alone we feel.

Jeni x

#27 Jeni Mawter on 02.03.13 at 12:35 pm

Hi Orpha,

Yes, it’s time for new beginnings for you and your daughter. I wish you the strength to take the necessary steps to freedom. And I would definitely watch your back!

Jeni x

#28 Pip on 02.04.13 at 2:24 am

Thankyou for this page. I’m still not sure if I am a victim or maybe I just think its all about me. I feel so alone and anxious all the time. I have physically removed myself from TNT mother but emotionally I feel guilty and that I have abandoned her. My extended family and sisters don’t understand my choices and if another person tells me I’m a crazy, lying bad person I may believe them.

#29 Jeni Mawter on 02.04.13 at 12:47 pm

Hi Pip!,

Am reaching out in cyberspace to give you a ginormous hug!

It sounds like you feeling fragile right now, but the reality is that you show incredible courage and strength. It’s so hard to extricate yourself from a family member when the rest of the family do not understand.

In my readings on Narcissistic Personality Disorder I have read a lot of articles, books etc on Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers and have learned that whilst some become a Narcissist themselves, others escape but to varying degrees. They often refer to ‘The Golden Child’. Ironically, if you are seeking answers and trying to take steps to get some sanity in your life, this means you are NOT the golden child.

I’d really recommend you Googling Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers and seeing what resources you find. If any readers can add to this it would be great for Pip and others in a similar position.

Now, Pip, repeat after me:

I am not Crazy
I am not Bad
I am not Lying

WE BELIEVE YOU!

Jeni x

#30 Survivor on 02.04.13 at 4:51 pm

I was brought up by not one but two narc parents. I only realised this a few years ago. My father controlled everything we did down to our toilet habits. My mother would make us even as teens ask before we were allowed to get ourselves a cup of tea or even a slice of toast. I was screamed beaten and yelled at if i complained i was hungry. At dinner we were served burnt food or gross food like liver and lambs brains and were beaten until we ate it all. For lunches at school my mother would mix cheese jam and other spreads all together in one sandwich and tell the teachers to keep an eye on me. I was beaten for not eating all my lunch though it was completely gross and the banana and apple i was given was rotten. As we got older it got worse my dad left my mother and my mother picked up her abuse even worse. She made out that we were awful human beings and made us get on our hands and knees and cry out thank you mummy for keeping us and not giving us up for adoption thank you for keeping us. She used to tell us how we are lucky to have her as she felt like giving us all up for adoption and told us that we would go into foster homes and end up in the streets if it wasnt for her. When i got old enough to speak out i was 17 when i had enough and got wise to it all. I was kicked out on the streets and told that i was nothing and i would amount to nothing. She would pick up ny freinds and offer them lifts and leave me out in the cold to walk home from school alone. My freinds and everyone thought she was amazing and when i complained to my freinds they stuck up for her. My mum told me she hoped i was going to sleep on the streets. When i got help from people from my after school job she stormed into the work place and abused my managers and they grabbed me and hid me in the back of the store. She bannedmy siblings from seening me and spun them stories of how i am an evil ungrateful person. She used God as an excuse. She is a preacher still to this day and a councellor too. She uses people for whatever she can get form them. When you are of no use she destroys your entire reptuation. I now live on the other side of the world from her and that is not far enough. If i lived on the moon that would not be far enough. I have a son and i am a really good mum and i know this because i feed my son, clothe him listen to him and play with him and i do not expect anything in return. My mum loves to lend money then bash you over the head with it for years to come. She spends all her money then says well i helped you out this year with this or that except what she lent was such a low amount compared to all the money she had but some how she has to impart some of the blame to me. I love my son and i have never hit him that is how i know i am a good mum. I can feel i have feelings and i am not fake. My mum used to scream the house down then the phone would ring and in a nano second her entire demeanour would change and she would be calm and happy and a different person then off the phone the witch would come out until the next phone call. I am in my thirties now and feel i have awoken from a bad dream i realised a few years ago that all my relationships were abusive ones. The guys all had the exact same traights and reminded me of my parents. They would control me with emotions withholding affection withholding information and controlling me by putting me down by blaming me for everything. You see as a child and the eldest of 4 i was blamed for my siblings bad behaviour because i was the eldest i should have stopped them so i would cop a beating for their actions too. So i naturally took the blame in all my relationships with everyone i encountered, somehow i felt responsible and i had to help them. I attracted so many narcs including a female freind who loved to invite me shopping insist on paying for it all only to bash me over the head with it later and force me to keep her infidelity a secret form her hubby and try and force me to come over and act like it was all ok in front of him. My sister and my brother are narcs too one of my siblings is not. My sister and i had an argument last year i was getting dressed and she came at me and yeleld at me for taking too long in the mirror no one else was waiting for it she concoted this story how i was holding everyone up but no one was awake and ready to leave i was the only one ready she was in her pj’s but someho felt justified. At dinner her and my brother in the middle of having a nice dinner suddenly stopped talking started at me and called me evil. I had sunburn because my sister forced us all to stay on the beach for the entire day because it was her bday and she wanted us to. Then was called evil and ugly for being sunburnt. I argued with her and swore at her i spologised for swearing i never called her names she went into great detail how i should die and how i dont deserve to be a parent or to live etc. She grabbed my son and said your mummy is evil never listen to her. I snapped it i went off at her and grabbed my stuff got in the car and left her there without a ride home. She got a ride with my brother though and they came to my house to scream at me. I did not talk to her for 18 months she wrote to me all remoresful and sweet when she gained my trust again she wrote me a nasty email saying how evil i am bringing up the argument we had and said of you want me in your life you must take all the blame for the agrument and admit that you started it was to blame then ill allow you in my life my brother wrote in that same email as he lives with her now that i was not aloowed in the family until i took all the blame. My mother is now getting married to a man she has dated for 7 weeks this is her third marriage. When I told her that she is not doing the right thing and please wait to see if the relationship lasts a year first she belittled me told me my opinion is worth nothing to her and she was willing to forget what i had said and asked me to take everything at face value. I do not want her in my life but i feel so guilty because my son loves her. I am getting help for this right now. I want to be free of them all if i had lots of money i would literally move tell none of them change all my numbers and emails and just dissapear from their sight forever. Since I cant do that i hope my new counsellor can give me some solid advice how to get these people out of my life for good but in a mature non aggressive way. These people just want to blame me my sister would talk to me for hours about her problems as my advice then a few weeks later come yelling at me saying i took your advice and it went wrong its all your fault she is in her late 20′s my mother is 56 its time for them to be narcs together and leave me and my boy out of it. I love them very much but i hate who they are. I feel loss and grief because i know who they could be and how much out family could be together normally if only they wernt like this. I wonder why i was born into such a family they all ignore their own issues and project it all onto other people and make out like you are the insane one. My mother made out i was totally nuts over dramatic for asking her to take a step back and wait a year before marrying some young dude not old enuf to me my father after a few weeks they planned to marry after 2 weeks! That is NOT normal behaviour at all! None of them will listen and i am done with them all.

#31 Jeni Mawter on 02.04.13 at 6:33 pm

I read your story and my heart breaks for you. ‘Survivor’ pretty much sums it up. You have been living in a war zone all your life.

I’m so glad you’ve moved away with your son. Now, is your time. Time to heal. Time to play. Time to find peace.

Now that you finally can make sense of your crazy-making life, I hope you can stand back and realise that you are the one who has amazingly managed to stay sane. Your little boy is so lucky to have you. And you are so lucky to have him, too.

You need to talk with people who understand. There’s an amazing number of people who will have also lived your sort of life. I hope you can find them and draw comfort from sharing experiences and knowledge. I hope your non-narc sibling is a source of comfort, too.

Am sending you my thoughts and wishes for the beginning of a new and marvellous life!

Jeni x

#32 Goldenprince13 on 02.07.13 at 9:03 am

Hi Jeni, i have read this great article and your comments with interest, i do note that most of you are women, i would like , if i could, bring some more balance to this, as there are many narcissistic women out there too,

i was with a covert malignant one , who along with all with this very hidden condition [some can go decades without seeing past the good-as-gold humble martyr exterior],are unlike the overts as they are prone to worry and stress, so seem vulnerable, but are sadistic abusive predators, behind their ‘social’ modest image,

They are highly skilled in manipulation and abuse and will use NLP, and suggestion in order to control and abuse , which they use after making you feel initially you are the most special person ever in order to hook you in,

Then they subtle mental abuse to slowly erode your confidence and make you feel all they are doing is your fault, they will say it is ‘all in your head’ ‘your paranoid’ they would ‘never do that’ etc whilst sadistically dismantling your identity and ability to think or feel in any rational and normal manner,

The coverts are the most dangerous as many fail to see through their false image, and this leaves those being abused by them, who have already been isolated behind their backs by the coverts to friends family and any support they had, in total isolation with no-one to listen and believe them,

As the covert will present a martyr/victim image as if the one they are abusing is ‘crazy’ ‘deluded’ and is the one causing them ‘intolerable suffering’, leaving their victim totally closed off from any support,

I have written some articles on my hubpage goldenprince13.hubpages where i have explored the narcissitic condition in more detail, and have other links to further research on the covert narcissist, as all need to learn and protect themselves from this dangerously hidden threat from such a predatory condition, knowledge is power for us all,

To all those who have experienced this or any abuse in their lives, keep safe,recover,deal with your inner issues and become strong,secure,and set healthy boundaries without ever allowing ANYONE to ever compromise them, but most of all be your true self as this ensures you will never be open to such abuse ever again,

As their condition is one of being self-centred to the extreme and hidden by their false sense of self, they fear strength and anyone that can see and expose them for what they truly are.

Thanks for reading i hope it helps.

#33 Jeni Mawter on 02.07.13 at 10:39 am

Hi GoldenPrince13,

I’m so glad to hear from you and that you’ve shared your experiences with everyone in this global community.

I can fully appreciate the female narcissist and the toxicity of their behaviours. I’ve been researching this area for a long, long time trying to make sense of people, experiences, fall-outs in my life and the life of my family. A large part of my research went towards a book that was published last year, which tells of a relationship fragmentation from a young male’s point of view. As an author, I concluded that male victims are often abused twice – once by the NPD person, and again by others in society who either don’t believe them or who expect them to ‘build a bridge and get over it’. The results can be quite tragic.

So, what I’ve decided to do is share my knowledge, insights and experiences in the hope that it helps others trying to make sense of their lives. I’m delighted this blog has touched so many people and will continue to post in the future.

Am sending a cyber-hug and wishing you a more peaceful path for the future.

Jeni

#34 a williams on 02.11.13 at 11:13 pm

Narcissism is the tendency to over-estimate one’s abilities and importance.
A narcissistic personality disorder is characterized by grandiosity, exaggerated self of one’s own importance, preoccupation with being admired, exploitation of others.

I have a cousin who has a healing business in Ponsonby Auckland she is a total narcissist. She has no real education but fancies herself as some master reiki healer and sucks all these people in with the plastic façade she puts across. We have watched her grow up so we know exactly what she is like. She has been violent to her children and also a child she looked after. After family members accused her of this she manipulated her way out of it making herself out to be the victim and further manipulating her daughters to lie to the authorities and they have started to be just like her.
I think she actually believes all the lies she tells to people. she tries to sell her business by posing in all these pictures that were taken years ago, she is the Tantra queen …all the lies and deception I believe has had an impact unconsciously on her as she believes she is very beautiful, wearing layers of makeup and faulse eyelashes far from a natural look of a holistic therapist however her karma is that she is extremely obese and tries to fit herself into all these clothes that don’t fit her, because being a narcissist she doesn’t see reality and views herself something quite different.

The terrible thing is that vulnerable people that she takes money off, are unaware that her energy and spirituality is truly evil and she transfers this onto others and they don’t have a clue.

#35 anna middleton on 02.17.13 at 4:35 pm

and the cruelty goes on and one. twenty years of being tortured and even now with a divorce and his new wife there, he continues to bully, threaten and is doing the same thing to my children, whom still love and want to spend time with him. I still have strong feelings of wanting to end my life because even with a new loving healthy partner, the old one just continues to abuse and terrify me. An email from him can bring back instant feelings of terror.

#36 Happy Lady on 02.17.13 at 10:05 pm

Thank you! After 7 years I am leaving my covert narcissist husband this week and the stress of it is horrible. Just counting the days. Sites like this remind me I’m doing the right thing. Fortunately I’m already in counseling to deal with my issue of always choosing my narcissistic father as a mate.I now know I have to deal with codependency issue too.

#37 Angela on 02.18.13 at 3:30 pm

I found a book that helped me out a LOT after years of mind-numbing hell with my narcissist partner. After 6 years I’m still with him but finally FREE (yay!!) of him being in control of my feelings. I’m pulling all the strings now and loving it ;)
Its http://www.controlthenarcissist.com. A bit expensive but worth every penny. Amazing to finally be free :)

#38 Angela on 02.18.13 at 3:37 pm

Survivor – you really ARE a survivor. God bless you and I hope many beautiful things come your way. You truly did not deserve the life you’ve had. All you did was get born into the wrong family :( It makes me realise that although I’m controlling my narcissist boyfriend now, I wouldn’t want him to be the father of my children because I dont want THEM to have to control him. At least now though I am emotionally in a place where I feel I CAN leave him – and if that’s where that book has taken me then its still worth the money. Good luck Survivor xo

#39 Jeni on 02.18.13 at 6:20 pm

Thank you everyone for your comments and courage to speak out, for your support of others, for your advice and insights. We all gain so much this way.

And thanks Angela for your tip about the book. Am off to buy it asap!

To everyone who’s ever cried and died (inside), here’s to being FREE!

#40 Jeni on 02.18.13 at 6:23 pm

Whoahhh!

That book IS expensive!!!

#41 Anne on 02.19.13 at 9:09 am

Hi I have just read all the articles on yr site and I thank you and all those who have shared their experiences.i have had an experience that has had left me taking antidepressants and undergoing counselling. My counsellor told me to google npd. I’m still not sure if I am a victim. I am martied with children but 5 years ago I was going through a tough time. I became very good friends with a lady at the gym. She made me feel on top of the world and like I could achieve anything. I didn’t know at first that she was gay but felt very attracted to her. Anyway turns out she was gay and her preference was straight women. We became involved and I was totally in awe if her. But she played with my emotions. Full on one minute then totally distant. I was confused. Not only had I embarked on an affair (which I never thought i wd) but it was also a same sex affair. She always told me I was oversensitve, read too much into her actions and I wd always end up apologising thinking I was just finding it hard to cope with my sexuality issues. She constantly talked about all the straight women who were attracted to her and made me feel I was special to be the one she had chosen. Anyway she finally move on with no explanation and I am left confused and extremely hurt. One of the hardest things was having nobody to talk to. I cut out friends as I didn’t think they wd understand I was having a same sex affair. She knew that and encouraged me to talk about my feelings to her. Vicious circle I opened up and she then knew which buttons to press. She’s still I’m my mind every day and I’m hoping this group can give me guidance on how to move on. I’m dealing with do many things. 1st infidelity, 2nd my sexuality and 3rd whether I am a victim of abuse. Please help

#42 LJ on 03.03.13 at 4:24 pm

Relief. What relief I experienced after reading this. I left my spouse a year ago after living in complete and utter insanity. It took all the courage I had. I felt so much doubt afterwards. “Did I over-react? Did I do something wrong?”I was exhausted from walking on eggshells..wondering what would happen next.
I have been diagnosed with PTSD, being treated for anxiety and depression, trying to enjoy eating food (went from size 6 to 0-2).
Of course he is posting pics of his ‘new’ girl/victim on Facebook. I pity her.
In the meantime I am not truly able to date. I had a rebound with another narcissist and ran for the hills after 3 months. I now have an arrangement (friend with benefits) because it ‘seems’ like the safest thing to do.
I wonder how long it will take to recover from the nightmare?

#43 bubalubski on 03.05.13 at 10:41 pm

hi i was with my ex for 5 yrs ,before i broke down n couldnt take it no more , we have been apart over 3 years , n i feel totally damaged . I dont think ill ever get over the mind fk i coped from him . And am pretty much happier to stay single than to even go threw that again . I must say nothing is worse than doubting your own feelings and judgement , because someone tells u that , it didnt happen , that u made it up or that they didnt say what they said , even the littlest decisions i needed him to help me with .Im still love adicted to this guy but have managed to stay away , i wouldnt say that im happy or even living , i think im surviving day by day , but anything is better than living like that. Just staying one more day does do alot of damage , u dont want to be scarred up n unloveable so if your with someone like that , its not u , go to counselling , rehab , whatever u need to do to get out ..that shit scars u 4 life :(

#44 Jeni Mawter on 03.06.13 at 1:44 pm

Hi Bubalubski,
It sounds like you’ve been through hell, but haven’t managed to get fully back yet. I really hope you start to heal and find a place where you trust yourself to look forward.
Lots of hugs to you.
Jeni

#45 CHRISTINE LOUIS DE CANONVILLE on 03.10.13 at 6:39 am

Hi Jeni, Just wanted to say that you are doing a great job of informing people about NPD. I have been reading the comments, and I find it heartwarming to hear that so many of the people here have discovered that they have been experiencing narcissistic abuse.

I am a therapist who works with victims of narcissistic relationship, not all abuse is the result of romantic relationships, such as abuse by a spouse or partner (both male and female). Perpetrators of this form of abuse can also be parents, grand-parents, children, siblings, co-workers, bosses, teachers, doctors, priests, and even therapists…….. narcissists are everywhere, always scouting for narcissistic supply.

My experience is that most victims who enter the therapy room have no idea that they are victims of narcissistic abuse. They first present with more identifiable issues, such as depression, panic attacks, fear, and trauma. As their story unfolds they display many of the symptoms of Narcissistic Victim Syndrome (i.e. confussion, trauma bonding, psychosomatic illness, low self-esteem, etc.). The victim knows that something is wrong, and often they think it is something that is wrong with them, and the confusion they experience leaves them feeling that they are going mad. Of course, they hear that they are mad often enough from their gaslighting narcissist. For those who have never heard the term “gaslighting”, I suggest that you familarize yourself with the term. Gaslighting is a form of psychological abuse used by narcissists in order to instill in their victim’s an extreme sense of anxiety and confusion to the point where they no longer trust their own memory, perception or judgment.

I shall put a link to an article I wrote on the subject, but please do ready other explanations of the term by Googling it:
http://narcissisticbehavior.net/category/the-effects-of-gaslighting-in-narcissistic-victim-syndrome

#46 Toni on 03.10.13 at 9:45 pm

The Aftermath,

How could you?

You asked me for help and i made you my friend

You wanted my love and trust and I gave you my all

You happily took everything I gave and a lot more

Then you abandoned me when I needed you

and crushed me in the aftermath.

All the promises and dreams you dreamt out loud

became denials and jokes

All the affection and compliments became criticism and insults

I know you don’t care,
I wonder if you ever did

I’ve been replaced and long since forgotten

I don’t want you back
I know what’s inside of you is dark and evil.

The scars you left are the worst kind

Because they will never heal

You killed my spirit

and one day it will haunt you.

#47 Jeni Mawter on 03.11.13 at 2:27 pm

Hi Toni,

Thanks for creating such a poignant, yet powerful, poem.

I’ve enjoyed reading it and will enjoy sharing it with others.

My only concern is with ‘one day it will haunt you.’ This would require empathy and those with NPD are unable to feel this :( Best just to move on with no looking back.

Much happiness to you,

Jeni x

#48 Jeni Mawter on 03.11.13 at 2:39 pm

To Christine Louis de Canonville,

Thank you so much for contributing to this discussion and for sharing your wonderful article about Gaslighting. I can highly recommend following Christine’s link http://narcissisticbehavior.net/category/the-effects-of-gaslighting-in-narcissistic-victim-syndrome

The saddest part of all of this is that victims who feel like they are going crazy are treated with anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medication, but none of their medical practitioners look at these people holistically, in light of the people in their circles of influence.

Christine, another thing that puzzles me is this:

Why do so few health professionals know about this personality disorder, or how to manage a victim of this personality disorder?

Please keep in touch.

Warm wishes,

Jeni

#49 CHRISTINE LOUIS DE CANONVILLE on 03.12.13 at 8:28 am

You ask “Why do so few health professionals know about this personality disorder, or how to manage a victim of this personality disorder?”

Jen, I can only speak for therapists in Ireland. I have done a lot of training in the area of different types of therapy over the last 20+ years, not just in Ireland, but in different countries. Never once was NPD even mentioned on any therapy training course I attended, nor was Narcissistic Victim Abuse (NVS). When doing my B.A. Degree in the 1990′s I studied Abnormal Psychology. However, it did not mention the “ism”, just looking at the brain functioning…… this never helped me as a psychotherapist.

In Ireland, narcissistic behaviour, because it is a personality disorder, is the domain of psychiatry (mental health services), not psychotherapy.
It seems that nobody (or very few) has actually linked the narcissist and the victim together, which really is quite bizarre. A lot of information is known
about the damaging behaviour of the narcissist, but little or nothing known about how this affect the victim…….. that is what I am trying to address NOW.

Victims of narcissistic abuse are more likely to go into personal therapy than to a psychiatrist when their world starts falling apart. Of course they do not come in and say “I am the victim of narcissistic abuse”, they come in because they are not coping with their lives, and they have no idea what is happening to them. That is why I started my website (The Roadshow for Therapists” (www.narcissistic behavor.net). If a therapist understand narcissistic abuse, they will also be able to recognize when they are dealing with a narcissistically abused victim. As the person’s story unfolds, the informed therapist will recognize the symptoms of Narcissistic Victim Syndrome (i.e. the Trauma Bonding/Stockholm Syndrome; the cognitive dissonance; CPTSD; Infantile regression; the unconscious defense mechanism; dissociation; co-dependent behaviour; etc.)……… these (and other recognizable symptoms) are the “red flags”.

Although I started my site with the intention of sharing my information and research with other therapists, I was amazed to find that victims were contacting me from all around the world (over 150 countries to-date). It became clear to me that this form of abuse is Universal, and reaching epidemic proportions. In their book, The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement, Twenge and Campbell state that although men are still more narcissistic than women, women (and children) are catching up fast. I know that I see men who have been narcissistically abused by their female partners, but this abuse largely goes unreported because of the shame that the males feel. It also troubles me that doctors, health professionals, social workers, police, solicitors, family courts etc., are all ignorant regarding the insidious behaviour of narcissists, and they more often label the victim as the problem. This further abuses the victim.

Here is a link to a short article I wrote on Female Narcissists:-
http://narcissisticbehavior.net/category/can-narcissism-affect-women

Jeni, I Hope this answers your question.
Christine Louis de Canonville

Hope this answers your question.

#50 Jeni Mawter on 03.12.13 at 1:54 pm

Hi Christine,

I’m so glad you came to this site! I read your article on the Female Narcissist and although I’ve never heard pf Female Relational Aggression I could totally relate. I intend to read all the articles at http://narcissisticbehaviour.net as soon as possible.

Interestingly, the female narcissist with NPD was the antagonist in a young adult multi platform book that I wrote and had published last year. It’s called Kiss Kill (Really Blue Books). The young male enters his ‘perfect love’ only to have it disintegrate over time. I presented Kiss Kill at a conference this year and am sharing the Powerpoint and YouTube for those who may be interested.

Kiss Kill Presentation

http://www.scoop.it/t/young-adult-and-children-s-stories/p/3995895138/transmedia-toe-dipping-2013

Kiss Kill YouTube ‘How Do You Define a Man?’ by Crane Films

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=scrdqYyXMFO

Will definitely stay in touch! Thank you so much for your insights and knowledge. Hugely appreciated.

Jeni

#51 Nancy on 03.14.13 at 6:13 pm

Hi Jeni,
Thank you for your blog/info on covert NPD. My younger sister is a covert… over the years there hasn’t been any thoughtless awful thing that she’s refrained from doing to me. Kicking me when I’m down is her specialty, she even tries to pull in our brother (they are only 10 months apart and he has never married) to humiliate and hurt me. It’s always when I’m least expecting it and off guard, and we’re all having a good time together.. this is her specialty. Out to dinner in S.F., out to brunch in Ashland, OR, during her engagement party, even, (this is the worst) at our own father’s deathbed in a hospital in Seattle.

Fortunately I have another sister (we are all in our 50′s), one that this younger sister also victimized years ago.. and she gives me emotional support, as does my husband. Mother views her as self-centered but she’s also the Golden Child.. seems she can’t bring herself to believe that her “sweet” youngest daughter would do mean things to other family members on purpose.

I’m healing now… we had a terrible blow out when I discovered that she was an HFA high functioning alcoholic (she’s a professional woman in healthcare) back in 2010. Surprise! I’m a wicked evil person that she threw away — again. I’ve been thrown away by her at least four or five other times over the years.. She always makes me believe that she wants a big sister again (never apologizes, of course).

This time it’s different, she can progress in her alcoholism and her codependent husband (who constantly has attacks of nerves, hives, cold sores, etc) Probably due to her antics ignores us as well..

In fact, they bought a second home about a mile from where we live and they travel hundreds of miles to this home and pretend we don’t live here. Believe me, I’ve gone through hell with this bitch over the years.. but I’m through now. If her husband ever wakes up and snaps out of it, he’s going to need some serious counseling.

Yes, the post traumatic results have been difficult for me, I wondered why I put up with her nonsense, lies and aloof meanness over the years… all I can say is she was my sister and I wanted to believe that she valued me. Now I understand that she doesn’t and she never really did. I attribute this bond more to my reluctance to let her go earlier but I do acknowledge that she played me like a fool for years.. one cannot go back and change a thing.
thanks for allowing me to write this,
please keep helping others to recognize these coverts,
best regards, Nancy

#52 Jeni Mawter on 03.14.13 at 9:40 pm

Hi Nancy,

Sounds like you’ve been through the mill and back again with your younger sister. I really feel for you. This is such a convoluted shape-shifting thing to experience I’m hardly surprised you got played for a fool.

I’m glad you’ve got supportive people in your life and hope they can rally at times of need.

This is an insidious battle to fight.

Hugs,

Jeni

#53 Nancy on 03.15.13 at 4:06 am

Jeni,

Thanks..
Yes the battle has been insidious.. but it’s Over now — I’ve no need to fight any longer.

She can keep our brother (who is apparently still under her control) and our Mother as well. She’s laid the groundwork for years and told them both what a out-of-control nutcase I am for years.

What people need to understand about these Coverts is that they can permanently ruin family relationships. This isn’t like a covert NPD who is an “ex-husband” or ex-boyfriend, etc. That would be easier to find closure. This is a family member you have done lots for over the years who has systematically and selfishly ‘poisoned the well’ within the family and ruined relationships.

Yes, it’s an insidious battle.. but there comes a time when you probably just have to ‘divide’ up the family and stay with those you know are healthy and objective… otherwise, the battle goes on Forever.

I could envy those with an ‘ex’ this and that who can walk away and begin a new life without a Covert NPD in their midst. More needs to be done to identify these people earlier on… I didn’t even realize there was a Name for what she is until 2010. Sad to live so many years in such a state of confusion.. There’s nothing to fight about — it’s flight time.

#54 anotherone on 03.16.13 at 5:21 am

My mother had numerous electric shock ‘treatments’ for her thyroid ‘treatment’ in Nova Scotia when I was around 1 year old.

Could this wrong treatment by the medical establishment, have CAUSED her Narcissist Personality Disorder?

I am looking for the Best book covering dealing with COVERT NARCISSISM, have not found it yet, as they deal with regular N.

I noticed online, there is no mention, so far, of really only ONE person being their lifelong target. The quietest, gentlest, youngest family member in this case. Generalities seem to be discussed for anyone seeking a way out their harmful relationship problems with their NP parent.

My older brother was the favored, protected one unsurprisingly. As these nutty events keep occurring more than several times a year and are physically, mentally, etc. disturbing and draining what advice do you offer?

I want to be able to say I can (as easily as parents seem to do) detach emotionally from them, when they go on the attack. He scores about a 12, her a 26.

Thank you, blessings to all putting up with this.

#55 Jeni Mawter on 03.16.13 at 4:51 pm

Hi Anotherone!

Nothing I’ve read relates Narcissistic Personality Disorder to electric shock treatment. Everything I’ve read points to parenting issues that failed to encourage a sense of ‘self’ and fostered the development of narcissistic traits. It would be interesting to find out more.

As to the issue of covert versus overt narcissism, there’s a whole chapter about it in a book by Eleanor Payson called ‘The Wizard of Oz and Other Narcissists: Coping with the One-Way Relationship in Work, Love and Family. Basically, Eleanor Payson concludes that the dynamics of the disorder are identical for both overt and covert narcissists. What differs is their Public Persona.

The Overt Narcissist gains their sense of identity from the need for admiration, power and control and gains their attention through a larger than life display of charm, intimidation or grandiose shows of wealth, high status, money etc. They demand an endless supply of public admiration, respect, awe or even fear. The overt narcissist often has a busy social life and many friends, but these are a carefully selected group with similar traits or happy to play a supporting or adoring role.

The covert narcissist gains admiration, status and control through indirect means and they often disguise their grandiose needs through player a role such as helper, humanitarian, expert professional, rebel with a cause, misunderstood artist etc. They often are drawn to a role that portrays them as humanitarians such as doctors, therapists, ministers or missionaries. It is through their role that their needs for admiration, money and control are met, whilst at the same time maintaining an illusion of selflessness.

So, basically the overt and covert narcissists are identical in need, but opposite in public persona.

As to how you manage your N family members, withdrawal, detachment, no contact, set boundaries, seek support from others who understand and will validate this problem in your life.

Hugs.

Jeni

#56 anotherone on 03.17.13 at 2:16 pm

Thank you for your responses Jeni, appreciated.

Unfortunately, there has been no one in my life who are willing to be a support person for me, and I have gone it alone. I did mention it to her brother who is a counselor, pastor, etc. Said he wasn’t aware of NPD. Due to my mother’s behind my back sabotages, and years of mistrusting her speaking with her support group of family and friends on the phone specifically, and hearing her speak inappropriately about my father for i.e., knowing she does it to me too with my relatives, has made the ability to reach out, well just about impossible. Everyone thinks she is a do good, giving, angelic person, and she had me fooled myself for almost 40 yrs too! I finally went on line, typed in her abnormal response to me, and up came pages on narcissism, which fit with her inability, lifelong, to emotionally attach to me, protect me, not bully me, etc. The culprits I had to deal with were her, dad, and his narcissistic mother too. None protected me from the other. Dad stood up for me once, decades too late haha.

Another website said behaviors such as withdrawal, isolation were not good things to respond with family. However, I have done the things you mentioned, because there really is nothing else to do. You have to live with the fact that other family see you as ‘different’, a loner, and other negative connotations, simply by staying away from your tormentors at gatherings to protect yourself and you never were given much chances to actually enjoy their company anyway, having to defend yourself and stopping and isolating, as defending only resulted in ganged-up attacks.

Are there many other cases where there is mainly One chosen target person for them? Like my parents did with me, not protecting me from grandmother, or either parent, or brother. I do find it shocking that people are so unaware in noticing the subtleties, however small, in her interactions with me, because she does slip up -altho infrequently. when in others presence.

I cried when I found out, just knowing, but so relieved to Finally, finally know what the heck was going on in my sick family. Both parents are emotionally detached, dad, like most men was abused by his dad. Unlike women who are frequently sexually assaulted by a boy’enemy’. I don’t feel like I have any shame over it, but embarrassment just being around them. Of course, there is anger also, as it continues! My mother used to say I hated myself, wasn’t mad at her! This, like all other comments, she doesn’t remember saying, and am so saved by knowing the yrs she tried to make me feel crazy, self doubting, will never occur again. Prayers don’t help, nothing stops the repeat attacks, but having faith doesn’t hurt anyway.

That’s off topic. It is good that there is support and information online because there are many like me, who have no one who understands or helps the target person have faster victory over the life they’ve lived since day one.

God bless! and thanks again Jeni. Saving lives and souls, as this is not an easy thing to live through. Living with the fact that family would choose to treat you this way, get away with it, and not let it affect you too much.

#57 Lu on 03.17.13 at 9:25 pm

Hi Jeni – thank you so much for this article. You have eloquently “summarised” a topic, which as you say, is so complex and convoluted, and yet it is remarkable how our experiences are so similar. If there is anything I can share – it is that there IS life after being caught in the clutches of a narcissist! I only realised, earlier this year, that my mum is a whopper of a NM – but had managed to extricate myself from her 16 years ago by emigrating. I am now more in control of the contact I have with her, never more than a couple of days together MAX. I, of course would prefer to keep it short, like say – a coffee/tea – hard to do when on different continents!
Kind regards,
Lu

#58 kat on 03.25.13 at 2:49 pm

hi jeni,
thank you for the article ,I’ve been dealing with a narcissist for 13 yrs. We are separated right now ,working on the divorce .i always feel as though I’m in his reach. The man knows how to manipulate and add plenty of guilt. He always made me feel as though if it wasn’t his decision than it wasn’t the right one. And the ups and down mood swings were completely unbearable. Along with alcohol abuse and mental mind games i was living in sheer hell. I was always walking around on eggshells so not to upset him. And he knew how to play on my fears as well. But needless to say i moved out witch was the 1st step .now i was wondering were i could get help for narcissist victim’s? Because i believe i might have fallen into the trap? Please help?

#59 Jeni on 03.26.13 at 1:44 pm

Hi Kat,

Congratulations on your decision and for taking a stand to move on. Such a gutsy thing to do.

The frustrating thing is that there are not many resources I can point you to. There’s hardly anything written about Narcissistic Victim Syndrome, although I’m sure this will change as more and more people recognise the fallout of NPD. There are some on-line support groups, lots of books on narcissism, but not much information for victims to either understand what’s happened to them, or find out ways to recover.

I can recommend Christine’s web site (see blogger above) at http://narcissisticbehaviour.net/

I hope this helps.

I’m starting to feel like Alcohol Anonymous, we need NARC Anonymous, or Narc Survivor, or something!

Hugs,

Jeni

#60 Greg on 04.03.13 at 11:53 am

Hi Jeni,

Thanks for your blog. I’m one day out of an 8 year relationship with a woman who systematically dismantled every aspect of my life. My closest friends aren’t talking to me anymore. I’ve lost 2 jobs I feel like I caught my toe on something 8 years ago and have been trying to keep from hitting the ground hard this whole time. This time I think and hope it is really going to end. Not because I don’t feel a strong love for her, we are simply in a repeating cycle that is destroying both of us. I feel a strong need to recapture a life with diverse friends and multifaceted interests, and a love of life.

Thanks,
Greg

#61 Liz on 04.06.13 at 7:43 am

Hello,
I am a survivor of a narcissistic grandmother. My family is all around dysfunctional, but this sudden realization of my grandmother’s narcissism is relatively new– in fact in the past week or so. I am wondering if anyone else out there went through the things I went through.

Growing up, I was torn between idolizing my grandmother and nearly hating her. I was very close to her growing up and spent a lot of time with her, but her behaviors toward me made no sense and were very inconsistent. She liked to dote on me– but her doting was to satisfy herself. She hardly ever asked me about what I liked or cared about– every “gift” she gave me was largely something she like or wanted. Basically, she was using me as a little toy to play out her fantasy. I think she wanted a daughter, but got two sons, neither of which lived up to her expectations of “fame and fortune” so she was grooming me to fill that role. The things I really liked or even needed were typically off the table. She LOVED to be thanked and she wanted people to give her attention constantly. Our whole family felt on edge when giving her holiday and birthday gifts, which she basically demanded. If it wasn’t big enough or sensational enough, she pouted like a two year old. She would deliberately put “thank you” cards in my Christmas gifts to be sure I thanked her for them.

My grandmother loves associating herself with people of wealth and prestige, even to the point that it is completely ridiculous. She acts like some local politicians and TV personalities are her personal friends and even embarrassed us in public on multiple occasions by trying to get their attention if she saw them in a parade or something. The person obviously didn’t know who she was, but she kept play acting like she was introducing us to her powerful friend.

My grandmother loved making me afraid of all sorts of things to control my behavior. I started having panic attacks and other obsessive compulsive behaviors at the ages of 4-5 because of her threats and scare tactics. She was especially obsessed with cleanliness…She is always convinced that I am going to die. When I went to college, she gave me a flu survival kit full of diarrhea medicine and aspirin instead of a normal gift. I didn’t get the flu.

She shames me and makes fun of me by bringing up stories from the past where I did something typical for a child, but she sees it as a flaw or weakness. Examples of this are: crying for my mother as a baby and holding a doll she gave me by the hair at the age of 2. (She didn’t like giving me real toys as a kid– only collectibles and then she got mad at me for trying to play with them like toys– imagine that!)

My grandmother only paid attention to me when it was to her benefit– or she got some recognition out of it. She never liked looking at pictures from my trips or vacations with me. She usually ignored me when I tried to tell her something about my life, but of course she spent hours telling me about herself– over and over again. She didn’t like playing games with me much either. I remember entertaining myself 90% of the time I was at her home growing up; my father went through the same thing as a child. I remember going on shopping trips where she would lavish on herself with nice things, but didn’t buy much for me at all, and expected me to almost kiss her feet if she bought me something relatively small.

Now that I am a married woman/adult, she is particularly awful because I am no longer around to feed her ego and she often tries to guilt trip me. She was mad at me for going away to college in another state away from her and said horrific things about my boyfriend (now husband) before she even met him just because she wanted me all to herself and couldn’t accept that there was another person in my life. Interestingly, now that my husband has a good job lined up and is about to become an officer in the Army, she has changed her tune. Now he’s the greatest (because he’s a somebody) and I’m the loser because I’m struggling to find a job.

My husband got a job in a town two hours away from her and she cannot accept that we are moving. (We already live an hour away). She called us both individually (very strange!) and told us about jobs she wanted us to take around the corner from her house, after we already informed her that our plans were solidified. I wonder if she was trying to play my husband and I off of each other for her benefit…

On Easter, I called her, and she really gave herself away as the narcissist she is. She openly said she is “possessive of me” and called me “her child.” She said, “I know I let your parents raise you, but you are really mine.” She also went on to say how she “worries” about me constantly and treated me like a little two year old. I am in my 20′s. I was so horrified by what I was hearing– she just cannot accept that I am an adult and an individual. She doesn’t approve of what I do, what I like, who I married, etc. etc. I am no longer around to help her enact her fantasy and she is mad. It is all about her– she doesn’t care what is good for me or what makes me happy. If she doesn’t get the glory, she treats me like dirt.

I am reeling with so many emotions, but right now I am just depressed and angry. Like I said, my whole family is dysfunctional and my own parents disowned me after I balked at their emotional abuse and controlling behaviors, so I am really at a loss right now. I feel like all the adults I grew up with used me to their advantage, but don’t really view me as an individual with thoughts, feelings, and dreams. It was all about them….

#62 Liz on 04.06.13 at 7:47 am

Oh, and she is particularly cruel about my weight.. because she was a stunning beauty as a young woman and I guess I don’t live up to her definition, even though I am certainly not unattractive or ugly.

#63 Irsa on 04.06.13 at 7:16 pm

My sister has been on antidepressants for 3 years and seems to be getting worse; she has left home and returned 3 times, she thinks she’s fat so she has stopped eating, she is so suspicious of everyone as though everyone is her enemy, she is so cunning and lies so well it makes you actually think whether you did do why she is saying, she twists stories its unbelievable, she doesn’t look after herself, only gives importance to ehat her face looks like and doesn’t look at anything else e.g feet, nails need cutting, it’s horrible! Every time you talk about her owing money she becomes very defensive and argumentative. As a family we just don’t know what to do?

#64 Linda on 04.07.13 at 3:23 am

This is how I figured out my (now) ex boyfriend is a covert narcissist; I have basically been crying on a weekly basis because of my being with him.

I felt like I do not matter, that I have been idealized and discard over and over again… I have been living up to crazy expectations and placed in impossible situations. Anything else than superb performance was looked down on as if I was a hopeless rat, and not getting his approval felt like a burn. How did he install this chip in my mind telling me: everything I do, I do accordingly to being his “perfect” girl friend. My needs, preferences, feelings and values were constantly overlooked or mocked.

He has pinched me to check my fat percentage when we see each other. I am not fat; I get comments on looking like a super model many times during holidays we have been on. I felt that he hated people complementing me. He objectifies me by for example offering one of his friends to kiss me on a cheek, like he just gave them a gift. He often camouflages criticism as being helpful. For example; teaching me how to work out my but many times a week. I did not ask for advice, and I exploded out of anger eventually.

He also criticized the way I talk, the way I dressed, my make up, my personality, my being messy, my general knowledge and my cleaning. My social smoking was completely out of the question, and I have even promised him a car if I light another cigarette. According to him I am a moody and over sensitive person. And he is walking on “egg shells” around me. And yeah… I am also maybe bipolar. How could I not see this sooner?

I am in my intensive master program now. I study economics in England. Doing quite well. Got 3rd best out of 80 people on my first mark. I feel he did not like that either. I was so tired. I started to drink in order to cope, and I had gotten rash all over my body and insomnia tendencies. I started to suspect that something was wrong with my head, and I got depress to the point that I would rather prefer to be dead sometimes. (I feel better now, and I would never actually do something to hurt myself).

How did I end up in a relationship with this man?
He had a crazy life style. He works as a teacher for 19 year olds in Costa Rica teaching fitness and physiology. We met down there. He is incredibly charming, handsome (trained, like a pro athlete) and always said the right things. He also is very intelligent and sophisticated of nature. His co-workers and friends look up to him. He is into extreme sports such as skiing and surfing. He cannot relax for a long time, and he is very competitive and fearless. When we met, he was quick to find out about how much I earned and if I owned my own apartment, and I guess I fitted his picture of a reasonable pretty, nice, and intelligent but gullible girlfriend.

Our relationship started quite sexual with exciting nights. It did not take long before we lived together in Costa Rica, and when we returned to Oslo, I moved into his apartment with him. I stayed in Oslo permanently while he travelled on business to Costa Rica for 1 month four times a year. He tried to squeeze a high rent out of me at first, but I refused to make myself a business proposition and paid reasonable rent. He instead made me pay most of the groceries or whatever he could. He would do strange things such as sell me something he had gotten for free without telling me…

Although we had an intimate and intense relationship, separation did not seem to affect him at all, and he was so surprised (or something), that I found it hard. I asked if he did not attach to people? He got furious and stunned.

I was heart broken as he would go down there for 6 weeks, and I did not feel he missed me at all. He was posting pictures of having the time of his life and being sad about returning to home. Meantime I was working full time and studying on the side, so I was piled down in work and had no time to be social. I felt he was also different when he got home, I do not know how exactly. I did not feel a true connection (ever) and I was unsecure if I could trust him. He yelled at me when I questioned him saying; “If you don’t trust me, we do not have a relationship any more”. He worked with educating something like 100 girls in bikinis who were madly in love with their teacher. He loves this attention. He craves attention from all people who “matters” or can give him higher self esteem or power. I also think he has been unfaithful. These are some of the hints;

1. He mocks guys who actually are faithful

2. When he would come home and we had sex, he said
“Oh, I did not realize you came, you come so silently” (compared to who?)

3. When I visited down there his roommate looked insecure when introducing me to the cleaning lady who asked who I was. He said “Um, Peters (my boyfriends)… friend” (why would he say to the cleaning staff that I was a friend? I cannot think of any reason but them having other girls in their villa)

Which my boyfriend heard, and just blew off in a tremendously clever way! I will give him that. But I realize now. I did not realize that “humans” could be so heartless until now.
He just pinched my side and smiled, with a little dance saying: “oh, so im your FRIEND now… haha”. And I let it go… Why?

He is exploitative, and always uses his position down in Costa Rica to get free stuff such as hotel nights, free food at restaurants etc. Saying to the businesses he will promote the store to the students, which I do not think he bothers to do. He also did this with a tailor, and he got commission on the money the students spent.

He is so rude to his mother, which is probably the reason he has become this way? To my family, he always acts like prince charming, so I cannot tell them his true nature…

Sometimes I am scared what his plans for me were. Do they plan? We have bought a house together which we were to move into in 6 months. What scares me is that he obviously wants me to doubt my psyche.
Once he also misunderstood me. I said. “If I was to be older than 60, I must start to live a more happy life.” I meant it as I feel like my heart and my head is hurting, and my physical health is crumbling (sometimes I leave the door open to my flat so someone can help me if I have a heart attack, probably over exaggerating but it hurts sometimes and I am a little scarred). He said “that is the stupidest thing I have ever heard you say”. He thought I meant that I would want to kill my self. And the sickest thing is; it felt like he was sort of happy with himself for this. I guess this is because he feels power? He is not worried for anyone but himself. If someone is in a sticky spot, he just criticizes him or her. No empathy, no possibility what so ever seeing two sides of a story. No compassion… He is really cruel, and you wont believe the way he talked to me after I cried about an abortion (yes, I had to have an abortion). He would rather go skiing than coming to help me deal.

I ended the relationship a week ago. Now, all I can do is read about this stuff. How did I get so codependent and addicted to another person? I want my happiness and my life back.

I just don’t know why I let him go in the nicest way someone can be dumped… I should be furious, right?

I am seeing a therapist now too. Hope to feel better, I think I will.

#65 Unknown on 04.21.13 at 3:17 pm

More please. Why and how do they pick their victims

#66 Nick on 04.23.13 at 12:49 pm

This is a fascinating subject which requires some thought before a meaningful comment.
The statement “They will need support to remove themselves from their narcissistic relationship, and to not repeat the cycle of abuse in their next relationship”…. in a real way is easier said than done..For some, the relationship is marriage (spousal), daughter, son and other general family situations.
Thanks for generating some serious thought in my life…as I am able to really concentrate I will return for some personal resolution.

#67 John on 04.24.13 at 5:46 am

This is very interesting, I actually was searching on google about rehab and why my ex totally left me after a month in rehab. Then all of this Narcissistic information came up as well.

I was with my ex girlfriend for 4 years, Let me tell you it was an extreme rollercoaster. I am actually really stressed out and i am trying to get over it. I still blame myself for her breaking up with me. I now see that she might possibly be Narcissistic. Has anyone else supported someone and had them go to rehab and they tell you one day out of no where that they love you and care about you but they are no longer “IN LOVE” with you? I just have never met anyone that you do everything for and they don’t even show you compassion for what they have done to you. I am hoping one day she apologizes to me and that i can tell its sincere. But i guess she must be Narcissistic, judging by everything in the past and what is happening now. STILL LOST…………..

#68 Jeni Mawter on 04.24.13 at 3:24 pm

Hi John,

It’s no wonder you’re feeling lost. The more you find out about Narcissistic Personality Disorder the more confronting and overwhelming the information can be. It’s like experiencing Post Traumatic Stress over and over and over again.

From my reading and understanding, a narcissist cannot apologise, or if they do it will be with Sincerity Factor Zero. Waiting for an apology will consume all your time, emotion and energy.

Narcissists are unable to empathise with others and can’t see the need for an apology.

They are unable to acknowledge that they have said/done anything wrong because of their inflated sense of self.

Through blaming, the wrong-doing always comes from someone else.

They see no reason to apologise…

… unless the apology brings with it narcissistic supply.

#69 Lisa White on 04.28.13 at 8:01 am

Hi,
I have a Narcissistic mother. She has tormented me all my life. I am an only child. My mother used my cousin as a golden child. As far back as I can remember, she has always said that she hates children. She did not want to be around me. I spent the majority of the time in my room. She did not teach me things that a young women should know such as birth control. I grew up feeling unloved. As a teenager, I became pregnant which I know now was to be expected. I only wanted to be loved and accepted. I was taught to do what other people told me to do. One of my mother’s favorite saying was “Who put that thought in your head?” I thought that I could not think for myself. So I did and believed what others told me. So not knowing about birth control and believing others would look out for my best interests. I became pregnant and the abuse was at it’s worst. She commented almost daily about abortion and she was ashamed to be seen out in public with me. What would people think of her? After the baby was born she let on that she was doing all the care for my baby. She drove all my friends away and isolated me. My father also a Narcissist was an alcoholic as well. He passed away when I was 21 years old from cirrhosis of the liver. Both my parents believed that I was too stupid for college and would end up stocking shelves at a grocery store.
After my father passed away and my mother stopped working to live off life insurance money. I had a very hard time with no friends and no one to help me. I became extremely depressed and suicidal. After attempting suicide, I was hospitalized. I was treated for my depression with medication. It never helped any!!! I feel resentment now that the trained psychiatric hospital staff did not recognize the abuse that I was living with. I tried to explain that my mother was holding me back in life and that all my problems with maladjustment/lack of support system were her fault. They focused on me instead and told me in order to “get better” that I needed to develop a better relationship with her. You cannot have a real relationship with a Narcissist! They told me to stop assigning blame to others and accept it myself. We even attended counseling together; the counselor listened to my mother intently and believed all her lies. She kept coming up with ways for me to make my mother’s life easier. I was to pay half the bills (my child’s father had passed away and she got SSI survivors, as I had no job), clean the house and cook supper every day. I felt like I was her housewife. Yet all I did was never enough or done good enough.
Later in my life…I filed for disability. And I married a Narcissistic, Alcoholic man who was abusive as well. He would not hold a job and often moved his family in with us. I was the one that had to pay all the bills and take care of the house. I struggled to hold the marriage together for 9 years. We had 2 children together (both have Autism) I stayed in the marriage because I didn’t want my children to have a broken home. After I could take the abuse no longer I finally got divorced.
I have decided that my life is my life and I am the one in control. I moved over 500 miles away from all the abuse and bad memories. I have come to realize that my parents never loved me! My ex-husband did not love me either. He is now out of the picture. I still struggle to make friends and some days my depression is really bad. I wonder if I will ever have a good life with a loving family. For that to happen, I would have to marry into one. LOL My extended family have nothing to do with me. I am trying very hard to have the life that I have always dreamed about. I am currently in law school now and trying to do the best I can for myself and my kids.
Thank you for listening.

#70 Jeni Mawter on 04.28.13 at 10:14 am

Hi Lisa,

I read your story and feel so strongly for you and what you’ve been struggling to cope with. There are so many elements that resonate over and over again with all victims of narcissistic abuse. One of these is the depression, and when help is sought the medical profession mis-diagnose, or more likely don’t recognise, the cause. So many people tell a similar story to you. I wonder sometimes at how many people being treated for depression have a link to Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Probably heaps!

The realisation that these people do not love us hurts so much. Even though everything about their behaviour suggests this, when the knowledge sinks in, it can be devastating.

The repeating patterns of behaviour, going from one narcissistic relationship into another, also happens all the time. The more we learn about how our behaviour contributes to the pattern, the better we can be.

I think it’s fantastic that you have finally worked out your boundaries, have moved away from the source of abuse, and applaud your steps towards a better life.

I wish you every success.

Jeni

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#72 Danielle on 05.10.13 at 3:01 am

Hi, I stumbled upod this web page as I look for blogs regarding NPD. I have been going through a lot of troubles with a narcissist for the past 20 years. There were common circumstances where I find myself contemplating wether or not I have miscalculated what my sister insist upon me that she believes I did. When I disagree, she labels me, crazy as the most common. “you are imagining things, or I never said that” are her favorite reasonings. There are also moments where she would accuse me of stealing her stuff, as she found it missing, and rats it to anyone present in the room even with absence of proof, and when I react to this ridiculous accusation, I am labeled as too sensitive. She would also eventually pop into an argument that doesn’t involve her and point out the flaws I got, making me believe that I’m the one who was all wrong, despite both parties were wrong, and preach every single thing you should and shouldn’t be doing. Times where she would out of the blue insult me in public, or comment something irrelevant about my lifestyle are her routines. The more I ignore her, the more obnoxious she gets, even commenting out loud that why am I acting like I hate her with the most condescending tone she could come up with. She is very condescending anyway, and it just makes me sick that I’m developing a defense mech of self pity for I tend to be very aloof whenever she is around. I start to doubt myself with capabilities I used to think I can do like matters in school. I don’t know how I’m going to morally keep it up with an NPD younger sister. I really want to give them a taste of their own medicine.

#73 Jeni on 05.10.13 at 7:00 pm

Hi Danielle,

Sounds like your sister’s a classic. This is so hard to deal with, but when it’s immediate family I feel it’s extra hard as there is no easy escape. You can try and distance yourself from your sister, even if the boundaries are not physical but inside your own head, it can still be effective.

You don’t mention your parents. How do they react to your sister’s comments? One of the hardest things is realising that one, or both, parents may be exacerbating the situation by siding with the NPD.

I find the self-doubt is withering. But it’s hardly surprising if you’re constantly told you’re crazy/too sensitive/wrong. When you’re told all your perceptions of a situation are wrong it is extremely difficult to believe in yourself. One way that helps to stand back from the hurt is to identify each of your sister’s behaviours as they happen.

That’s projection.
That’s gas lighting.
That’s relationship manipulation.

It won’t make her behaviour go away, but by being able to label it, it means you’re sane!

Wishing you peace.

Jeni

#74 Melissa on 05.14.13 at 7:55 am

Hi Jeni,
I’m sitting here in tears reading the responses and knowing I am NOT alone.
After finding out my N didn’t sign off his Facebook page and I found a long chat between he and his girlfriend (18 years younger than he) I went into a tailspin.
Of course he pulled out his narcissistic bag of tricks and I fell for it (at the time). Thinking I was the one who wasn’t there for him. He did agree to go into counseling and also told me I needed to go because I had “issues” as well. I really didn’t think I did at the time. Was I ever wrong. I went into therapy and through my once-a-week sessions have found out I’ve been married to a narcissist for 13 years.
Having found this out I’ve spent tireless hour looking up everything I can on the subject.
Where do I begin? His NPD is all emotional. He’s never been violent and I don’t know which would be worse (physical pain or the continued emotional pain). The emotional “frost” he carries with him is felt by anyone who enters the room. He can cut you off emotionally and act like you’re not even in the same room with him. He seems to go into a pout session when things don’t go his way or he feels he isn’t getting attention. All without warning.
Even my 15 year old finally came clean to me that she feels differently when he’s in the house than when he’s gone. She never comes out of her room when he’s home and I’m starting to see the effects on her.
He goes to therapy once every 2-3weeks and states he already knows what they’re talking about and feels he’s not getting anything out of it. When I urge him to find another therapist or go more frequently he just comes up with some excuse that maybe she’s getting around to the root of his problem. I honestly think he does not want help. He has no idea he’s a narcissist and, of course, I would never tell him that he is one.
My dilema now is do I try and gain coping skills with this narcissist? I absolutely (100%) DO NOT trust him whatsoever! I feel he still talks to his girlfriend (yes, they work in the same place).
Do I even want to try and work this out knowing I’d have to be mindfull of how he is? Some days I don’t want to put in the effort-it is so draining. I feel as though I’ve been sucked dry!
So confused right now but I’m going to tune in here often.
Thank you for reading.

M

#75 kc on 05.14.13 at 10:01 am

I have lived with a covert narcissist for the past decade. She is suffering from other illnesses such as MS, which makes this even more difficult for me to deal with.

in 2008 we separated, we went through a hostile divorce. She had me removed from the home on a unsubstantiated domestic violence charge and left me homeless. I worked out of my home so it, for a few days anyway, left me jobless.

I believed everything we had together was real, to everyone we looked like the perfect couple, but I had lost my friends and family, and eventually became disassociated with new neighbors when we moved as she had gone door to door and bashed me in front of them. I had been asked to be on the social committee when we first moved into our new home, but after what she did I could not even face them anymore.

I was crushed in 2008-9 during this separation. My attorney called and said that she would not be able to make it to court as her father was dying from cancer and she could not make it there. I told him enough was enough, we just both needed peace, I told him to have her draw up whatever she wanted.

She dropped the order, called me and over several weeks we talked. Eventually she told me she had a separation agreement she wanted me to sign. It was very unbalanced and inf fact, she had her father place a substantial lien on our home, several months earlier pretending that it was a marital debt, screwing me out of 50k+ of the marital estate. It did not matter to me, I loved her and wanted her to have peace.

She got me to sign the paperwork and a notice of non appearance so I would not have to even take time off work. we signed the papers and went our separate ways, at least for a couple of hours.

She called me crying and wanted to meet in the park so I agreed, she asked me how we got here when we were so in love, and about the good times we had. We both broke down in tears, she played a song for me that touched my heart and we kissed for the 1st time in a year.

We decided not to move forward with the divorce and not file the papers.

For the next few years we danced, vacationed, she changed her name to mine, something she had never done before.

We had some issues trust issues between us. I caught her using “key logging spyware” on all of my computers to hack my passwords and find out what sites I was going to.

(I have been in IT for over 20 years, I know this was done for a fact and even confronted her about it where she somehow “blamed me”)

I thought most everything was good, all but the control and the lack of trust (for no reason) towards me.

We were vacationing, making love, dining out, financially secure, adding on to the home, kids were doing well, everything.

I decided to get healthy as I had felt so depressed for so long in this relationship and the separation, so I started to work out and quit smoking, I was really working on self improvement as I wanted to be with her forever now.

in mid 2012, something must have gone wrong for her because several months after we were divorced, I found a letter addressed to me in the trash folder. (she had also hijacked my Gmail account and I had to prove I was the rightful owner)

I stated to realize I was not respected or appreciated one but by her or her family. she had isolated me from everyone I knew and loved, (with acceptation to pre-approved friendships facilitated by her)

I felt like it was her shown her family were the guest stars and I was the idiot plumber that saved the day in the last 5 minutes of the show, but still being made to look like an ass.

So I started to write down my feelings. This went on for a few days on a brand new laptop computer she had no access to.

One night, she looked over and said, what are you writing, I said a letter, she said to who, I said to you so we do not fight, she said oh…… several days went by and she did not mention it again, I finally asked her if she wanted to read the letter, she said no. I said it is about us, my feelings and our relationship, she said I know, then she said I just don’t want to be married any longer.

Mind you, this was within 3 weeks from out last cruise, in a full sweet (our 15th cruise mind you)

She had me once again removed and restrained from the home (even after police had come and determined there was no problem, she filed with the court anyways) and eventually dropped off my car with my stuff at a local church.

I immediately moved out of the state, 800 miles away as I realized just how bad she had become. when I finally got into an apartment, several weeks later, I found a letter, written by her, addressed to me. Inside was a motion to convert the separation to dissolution, uncontested, not even knowing that I had been legally separated from her for 3 years.

She rammed everything through, and got the divorce.

However, I was able to file with the court that she was lying, that we had fully reconciled, that I could prove everything I was saying (she changed her name, money, 2nd wedding ring, vacations, dance lessons, cohabitation in the same bed. etc.)

It is in front of the court now and I believe I have massive case as in her response, she lied numerous times and I can prove that she has lied, to me, the court, the attorneys, the police, everyone.

It is not so much my broken heart, trust me that is bad enough when you are in love, or think you are in love because you are being manipulated. but the truth is, I lost much more than that.

All the people I was friends with through her, The time I missed with my real family as I was isolated and forced to choose her over them.

The sacrifices made to try and win her love when I felt things were not right, I knew something was wrong for many years but could not see anything anymore other than her.

It is like she stood in the mirror worshipping herself and I stood behind her (with others) unknowingly worshipping her as well.

She has over 100 pairs of shoes, a new nose job, orthodontics, breast implants, tummy tuck, artwork, jewelry and everything I have poured into our marital estate

Right now I stand to lose over $100k that I have painstakingly worked for, saved and invested, she stands to walk away with over $350k in marital assets, uncontested.

She made me believe all of her lies, I have photos that would blow your mind and you would think we are a couple obviously in love.

I have bank statements, emails, correspondence, letters, contradictions, etc. that support my position and I will need all of it as she has tried to convince everyone that I am the problem.

I have just kept my cool and let her hang herself.

I tried to figure out her kids in this whole thing only to realize, they see me as a monster as well, why not, she has painted them that picture behind my back.

She is desperate now to keep the lie alive as when the divorce order is rescinded, then she will undoubtedly have to settle for a reasonable amount or face the judge with the fraudulent lien her and her father filed against the marital properly (this can now be proven)

This in light of the failure to have me properly served, the numerous lies on her sworn statements, her answers to the motions filed where she contradicted herself numerous times the testimonies of strangers met abroad on vacations that I kept as friends, they all know the truth, my HR department knows the truth, my friends and family know the truth, her friends and family do as well, but they are victims to her NPD and her MS for that matter as she plays the victim with that so well.

Do not get me wrong, MS is a horrible thing, but she is using it to further her cause and is on a rampage knowing she is holding the “What can they possibly do to poor little old me, I have MS card.”

It is tall true. I am not perfect, I make mistakes like everyone else, but I am a good man and I was a great husband to her, but it was all for a lie.

She did not deserve 1 nanosecond of my time, EVER!

I find myself in tears sometimes thinking about the good times we shared realizing it was all just a lie.

I was a “goodtime” and a bank roll to her, that is all!

Once I wanted my life back, it was over.

#76 kc on 05.14.13 at 10:24 am

I almost forgot the most important thing. “losing myself” has been the worst part. Trying to remember who I am, what I want, where I see myself, all gone.

It is nice that I can deal with this myself and do not have children with her (they were mine and hers from previous marriages and are all adults now) it allows me to face, every day. I wake up out of a restless sleep, wide awake, destroyed until I can convince myself it was a lie, sometimes it takes minutes other times it takes days (it used to be weeks)

Every day I wake up, I have to remind myself, I am me, this is my life and I live for myself and the people who love me.

This, and Gods grace, are the only thing that keep me from the bottom of a bottle, dead from overdose or any other of the dozens of ways I have thought of suicide and much worse.

I am lucky, I am strong in my faith and will overcome this.

I forgive her, but will never forget this.

I regret that I will not be able to care for her, in sickness and in health, as my fantasy/reality/illusionary marraige was once laid out for me.

I would have loved to be the right husband for her, I would have loved to be the right husband for anyone, but now that has all been destroyed for me. I am like her now, I cannot trust and without trust, you cannot have a loving relationship, at least not what I am looking for.

How do you love again after the one who you loved and thought loved you, has done something like this to you?

I am and always will be “broken”

#77 LC on 05.17.13 at 9:46 am

KC:
Don’t give up, if you give up they win. I am in the biggest challenge of my life right now trying to get through a divorce from my husband after 12 years of trying to deal with his NPD. Until last year I didn’t know what it was or why nothing seemed to work to help fix our marriage. It was when I finally went to a good counselor AFTER the failed year and a half with the marriage counselor, that I finally figured it all out. I was stressed out to the max. I truly think he will not be happy until I’ve lost everything, including my job. I was so run down I was just reactive, and couldn’t think my way out of a paper bag after years of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, years of verbal, physical, sexual, emotional abuse. I was simply reacting like a rat in a corner and fighting like a rat in a corner. Once I talked to the right people and got help to help ME balance, and be able to step back and ‘see’ just what was going on, it all fell into place. It’s hard because you have to grieve the dream you had for your marriage. And accept that it was never real for the NPD spouse. Unfortunately I have not got him out of my world yet as I need his help for the place we have each week so I can do chores and get to work. So he has ample time to continue his rages and blaming, and diverting, and projecting. It still takes energy to put up the wall to deflect his issues. You must look to move forward, and yes, right now I don’t like any men, how could I trust one again??? I understand, but you also have to forgive yourself, you were a caring person. Not your fault. The NPD can not care and it’s best to just work to get them gone, so that you can move forward and find better things. I was always a very independent and tough person, but I have empathy and I am a fixer, so I just kept trying to fix things for way too long. It was kind of surreal, I couldn’t quite believe where I ended up, and then it seemed no one else really takes you seriously when you try to talk to family and friends. They care, they just can’t understand because many people have no real idea what this kind of PD can do to others. But you have to pick yourself up, get help if needed, and think life. I have days I think I’ll never make it out of this mess, but I keep working a step at a time. There is a good quote: “Never regret, if it was good then it was wonderful; if it was bad then it’s experience”

#78 Luke on 05.18.13 at 10:11 pm

I would like to say how much my heart goes out to the people commenting on here. The three years of on again off again heaven then hell I dealt with my narcissistic ex girlfriend was horrible enough experience. The thought of a decade or two with shared children involved my heart just bleeds for you.
I really think that Narcisstic Victim Syndrome should be made a documented clinical diagnoses if it has not been already.
I won’t go into the whole in depth story of my encounter with a damaged individual and the deeply evil and sadistic behaviour those others on here will know without saying how mind bending and debasing the tactics the masters of manipulation are.
Its been over a year since we split for good (dumping me on christmas eve for the guy she’d been cheating on me with accompanied by a plethora of put downs and “i never really loved you” type comments and how funny her and her friends though it all was)
and its been about five months since she did the usual “come back tour” popping into my life at random out of the blue seeking supply the usual crisis and needing help..
When she did I had already finally accepted the fact of who and what she is but I was in the middle of my failing business going through liquidation and was too weak, stressed and run down to stand up for myself….I went straight into co-dependent mode showered her with forgiveness and praise we talked of friendship etc even shared a quick kiss…stupid me. I even began to doubt she was a narcissist maybe it was all in my head? maybe I was crazy imagining it like she always said?(gas lighting)
But I wasn’t… when my business finally folded I was devastated and I contacted her thinking I had a friend in her as I’d been there for her…wrong
She was not only not there for me she looked down on me the caring false self was gone completely no empathy whatsoever she put me down and criticised me when I was at rock bottom and then turned her back on me completely ignored my calls and msgs and two months later sent me a message acting as if she had done me a favour by turning her back on me when I needed her friendship most! gee thanks so much for that!

Anyway….
I’m having a really hard time letting it all go. My trust and faith in the inherent goodness in people is gone. I’ve isolated myself from my friends as she humiliated me in front of them and she made out I was crazy and they seem to have taken the bait because of course she’s an N a master of manipulation. I continually doubt myself and sometimes even find myself believing the gas lighting thinking maybe she’s not an N and its me…
I even went as far as contacting her and swallowing my pride asking for closure thinking maybe if we layed all the cards on the table I could let it go and live a normal life again without all this confusion.
But thats unacceptable to an N they can’t have you moving on! they want you to spend the rest of your life pining over them and mourning for what was and what might of been.
An endless supply of ego for them.
And Im really afraid that I might just be that guy…
Im still in love with the false self she showed me nearly four years ago even though I know now it wasn’t really her.
I even started to wonder if maybe i was the N!
But I know i’m not because after all she put me through I still feel sorry for her and it breaks my heart to know that she is very damaged and will never really ever feel love or true happiness…
Empathy

Does anyone know of any therapists in Australia that understand and deal with this kind of emotional, spiritual and mental abuse from these narcissistic people?

#79 Luke on 05.18.13 at 10:33 pm

Does anyone else have this problem of accepting the fact that they are an N and then going back to doubting that realisation? Its closed loop I really need to break…

#80 Melissa on 05.22.13 at 2:10 am

Luke, I do! I think “it’s not THAT bad” but then he has an “episode” and it alllll comes back to me!
Good luck to you!

#81 Jeni on 05.25.13 at 5:20 pm

Hi Luke,

My heart goes out to you and what you’re struggling with. It is an extraordinarily vicious circle you’re in. One big problem when dealing with the person with NPD is it is only recognised after repeated cycles of aberrant behaviour, often these cycles lasting many years. When you finally reach the ‘lightbulb moment’ of what you’ve been dealing with, it’s become ingrained.

The issue now is you. What makes you the co-dependent that you are? What patterns did you learn in early life that reinforced this co-dependency?

Then the next biggie is, What can I do about it?

I also live in Australia and have found that there is very little awareness about NPD or Narcissism Victim Syndrome which is why I started this blog. Despite seeking help from every medical professional from GPs, to psychologists, to psychiatrists, not once did I encounter the words narcissism or NPD. Even when I sought help stating that I specifically needed support from someone experienced with NPD I drew a blank. I spent most of the time explaining NPD to the ‘specialist’.

The only way I know how to deal with NPD and its devastation is to talk about it and share in community such as this. Most efforts to ‘explain’ to people who have not experienced the devastation of NPD do not understand, moreover they often do not even want to understand because they are the recipient of the ‘admiration effect’ of the narcissist. A friend of mine calls this Cassandra’s Curse. Not only are you cursed by the relationship with a Narcissist, you’re doubly cursed by not being believed (and thus validated).

My hope is to increase community awareness via blogs, articles, Pinterest etc. I have even written a fictional multi platform novel called Kiss Kill, that explores NPD from a male’s (victim) point of view. It may help you. It may not. You can find it on Amazon.

I really wish you every success in stopping the cycle.

Warm wishes,

Jeni

#82 Kat on 05.29.13 at 5:26 am

I have been with my boyfriend for a year and a half. He displays a lot of characteristics of a Narcissist. I’ve had psychological issues from an assault in the military and am constantly questioning the abuse from him because of that. He projects a lot. I’m always left feeling guilty and this is the tactic he uses to lure me back after he feels he’s lost me. He did the Narcissist crying bit for the first time yesterday when I said it was over and meant it. Just recently he stayed away from me for 2 weekends with his normal excuses (his friends). He says he never gets to see them because of me. I’ve beat myself up so much over time due to the neglect and emotional abuse. I’ve apologized when I shouldn’t but over time I’ve felt guilty if I didn’t after an argument. I’m always told that if I would change things would be different. I’m told I’m too negative and sensitive and I never go with the flow. I asked him once if I was all those bad things then why stay with me. He didn’t have a good rebuttal. I have no clue why he continues to do this. He no longer sleeps with me so I’ve suspected him of cheating and he denies it. I do want to cheat at this point and don’t care who it is. I know that’s bad but neglect will make you do the unspeakable. I’ve run out of options to make myself feel better. My mind spirals from advice from friends and the lies he may be telling me. When I think we have made headway we are back at square one again him projecting and me taking the blame. A day ago he bought my airline ticket to go see his family on the east coast even after I said I didn’t want to go. He wanted control I guess. What do I do anyone have any suggestions. I’m so depressed and all I wanted was to have a successful relationship and I got this. If anyone wants to email I’m at purkitty6@yahoo.com. Thanks

#83 DOLON on 05.30.13 at 7:39 pm

Hi,

I am Dolon, after reading this blog I think my huby is narcissist. Ours is arranged marriage. It was not working from the starting, because of his lack of attention. I never felt that feelings of togetherness and wormth instead of ignorance. Till now after 4 years and after having a loving daughter it’s not working that way. He always blames me that I am quarelling with him and that’s why he doesn’t want to spend time with me etc…etc. He also tells, “he is not that type of person who makes arguments, now after seeing me he has started all these.” There are so many things what one can’t explain like this. I wonder after a prolonged ill treatment he is telling “he hasn’t done any unfair thing to me.” Always lets me down in every aspect as he is very intelligent, even in front of his friends. And there are so many things…..

So, if he is narcissist then please give me some tips to bring him out from this disorder as I don’t want to break our marriage.

Please suggest me something.

#84 Luke on 06.01.13 at 10:31 am

Thankyou Jeni for both your kind words and for this blog….

Dear Kat
It’s so easy for someone on the outside to say this and so hard when your on the inside to listen.
Without ever meeting you or knowing you its so clear how unhappy you are how much your suffering in this relationship. Get out with dignity take back the strength the life force that’s being sucked from you. I wish someone had of said this to me a year and half in then I wouldn’t have tried and suffered and been humiliated for another two years.

When a snake bites you do you get angry with the snake? Do you try to reason with it? Do you give the snake another chance thinking the snake will change and not bite you again?
No..you just avoid the snake because you know that’s what it is…

Just like a narcissist.

#85 Luke on 06.01.13 at 2:22 pm

Wow the more comments I read on here the more I think I got off easy dodged a bullet so to speak.
It’s so sad to see all the hurt but it does help to know we are not alone in this yes?

#86 Brenda on 06.07.13 at 6:17 am

this is a great blog and description of the effects of a narcissistic relationship. I spent 36 years in a marriage to a very narcissistic husband. I always had a little voice in my head that would tell me ‘this isn’t right, isn’t normal’ but ended up doubting myself most of the time. It was so hard to figure out what was happening, I kept thinking he’s damaged by his childhood so if I just love him enough he’ll get better. Of course that never happens. The things you listed that are said in gaslighting “you’re too sensitive, I didn’t say that” etc. are right out of my book of life with him. I swear they all read the same manual.

Thank you for sharing these insights, I’m saving them to share with my family and friends who were often left feeling confused about his behaviour and words. I’m hoping that seeing him for who he really is will help me not to get into another relationship with the same type of person. I had no idea about this disorder until I reached out to an abuse counsellor before I left and she gave me a book to read. All these years I wondered and mostly believed it was all in my head, that no one else had been through what I had until I read the book she gave me. It was so liberating to discover I wasn’t crazy after all. I’m sure I’ll be working through the after effects of spending 2/3′s of my life in this unhealthy marriage for a long time, and I also see the effects it’s had on my now grown children.

#87 Linda on 06.11.13 at 8:53 pm

Hello, I have a brother who I believe is married to a woman with NPD. I read what you have written. You mention that many don’t know about this condition until someone tells them. My brother is completely dependent on his wife & at this point in time hasn’t confided in anyone about his wife’s illness, other than to say to my parents, “I know my wife has problems”. Other than that he constantly puts her on a pedastool & keeps saying he’s so lucky to have her. He has slowly removed anyone from his life that he was close too, including me. In this instance where he is not ready to recognize that it is her with the issues, is it then wise to point out to him that his wife is most likely suffering NPD? I wonder if he would even consider this to be an option. Would be interested to hear your views on this.

#88 Princess Die on 06.14.13 at 7:08 am

This was my dad. This was my life… Everything. Exactly. This is exactly right. I burst into tears multiple times and forwarded it to my mother.

#89 Jeni on 06.14.13 at 5:23 pm

To Brenda,

I’m so happy for you that you’ve found a path that works for you and makes you happy. May each day be better than the last!

To Linda,
I suggest you take the cues from your brother. If he expresses sadness/dissatisfaction/confusion with his relationship then it may be an opening for you to broach the subject of NPD. But if he is accepting of his relationship, and therefore happy to leave it as is, then there is no point in trying to discuss it with him as he won’t/can’t be receptive to what you’re trying to say. Be patient. The opportunity may present itself some time down the track.

To Princess Die,
I hope you can see a way forwards from this and that it brings you and your family some new understanding of an old demon. But cry if you have to. There’s a lot of grieving to do :(

Warm wishes to you all,

Jeni

#90 Krystal on 06.15.13 at 11:09 am

After reading this article, the light bulb went on. I have been at the wrong end of a NPD who happens to be my ex’s new wife.
For years, I and my son have been a target of her abuse and turns it around as if she is the victim in all of this. She is very crafty and manipulative. She has managed to convince a man who was once civil to hate me and hate his own son and to treat his own son with criticism and verbal and emotional abuse.
My son once live with his father, he endured emotional abuse and suffering at the hands of this woman. She also had his father convinced (Stockholm syndrome) that his son had Aspergers syndrome which included multiple visits to many doctors to find one in agreement of the case, she insisted that he needed harsh discipline and tried to induce hatred of his bio-mother (me) and at the same time inciting that I was using Parental Alienation Syndrome against them because my son had called the child protection authority on them because of the abuse he was experiencing from them. Since then, this woman has expended a lot of energy to erase my ex’s son and the history of a previous marriage from my ex. I was given my son when I pursued custody with the support of the child protection agency, a children’s lawyer and a lawyer of my own and the case was going to trial because her manipulations and placing false statements in affidavits was not working in her favor, she even blamed a miscarriage on me. My son was handed over to me with only the clothes he was wearing. Everything that he owned at his fathers was thrown in the trash and totally erased from his father’s family, even the extended family will not communicate with him. Every encounter he has results in abusive comments by his father. My son gets bullied online by his step mother via his father’s account accusing him of stalking because he is seen walking near their house. He keeps constantly being told how his life with me and everything I provide him with is trash. Her children bully him at school and report everything they see him do at school and he gets the third degree via his fathers account. We are constantly on our toes around these people while trying to have a normal life. Awful rumors are spread around the community about me and my family with hateful things.
This woman boasts that she is the best step mom ever and that she does everything for this kid. Her house screams Martha Stewart. She posts online about how great a step mom she is (she has hardly any contact with my son) She claims to be the victim of all of this that I am the one being vindictive and making my son hate them.
But it’s the other way around, by the way they treat him, he refuses to be bullied or abused, every time he has tried to have a relationship with his father results with his feelings being hurt and he chooses not to see his father for a while,but he keeps trying and ending up with hurt feelings. I have never once refused him to visit with his father. He makes the choices whether to see him or not. Every time he has contact with his father, I hear all the pain and hurt this kid goes through because his father and his step mother chooses to bully him. They then turn around and play the victim.
She victimizes and when there’s a reaction she denies any situation or involvement, plays the victim and makes accusations that those who she victimized are the ones who are victimizing her. A classic Jekyll and Hyde.
My role as a mother is to support my son regardless of what he decides to do. I’m there for him when he needs me to listen to his hurts.
I just want this roller coaster to stop.

#91 Jeni on 06.15.13 at 4:00 pm

Krystal,

Your situation sounds shocking. I understand why you need the roller coaster to stop but don’t envy you your choices. This is incredibly tough on you, and particularly tough on your son. You don’t mention how old he is. I hope he is at an age where you can try to explain the confusing and abusive behaviour. At some stage he will be able to choose whether to continue contact or not. Any possibility of him changing schools? Your son needs to find a ‘safe’ place where he is free from abuse and bullying.

Good wishes to you both!

#92 Maria on 06.15.13 at 10:23 pm

Hi Having read many of the comments on this blog I myself find similarities within my own life. As I’m a writer the best was for me to express myself is to write it out, thanks for listening to my story, it’s me talking out loud in my head as many of you have done.

Where do I start well I meet my NPD partner when I was about 22 in a night club, I should of know at the time that him staring at me wasn,t a good sign or a sign of admiration, it was more likely I was going to be his next victim, when I look back at that time how could I ever imagine that I would be on the otherside of that moment and in a very different situation years later writing about my experiences.
But that was my choice back then and who would of thought I would of reaped the most devasting consquences from that choice. As I look over my life and my decision and dissect the journey I had taken I have been unravelling the types of personalities whether family members or my ex and his family members and can see the NPD personalities all around me as a young child and him as well.
I myself had a wicked stepmother I suppose you could say, she had been sexually abused as a child and in reflection she seemed quite bitter and twisted about sides of her early life and childhood. Years later I did ring her up and tell her this, I said “What you put me through as a child was wrong and it was never my fault what happened to you and she had no right to put me through what she did” she hung up on me! NPD
Well it just happened to be that she became my stepmother and as the oldest daughter of my father I seemed to get her nastiness and scapegoating and cruely this was from the age of 5 years old, red flag first NPD personality to affect me and my own self worth, this continued until the age of 15 where I asked my dad to please let me board somewhere else as I wanted to finish my UE at school New Zealand qualifications, he agreed and I went to stay with my friends family until I finished school and got a job, Yeah my first taste of freedom. I went in and out of various relationship and then I thought I’d meet the one! admittedly in the beginning he use to be quite possesive and pouty if i didn’t do as he wanted but in the early stages I held my ground and continued to socialise with my friends, he then pressured me to get a place with him, thats when the controlling began. In the beginning I was quite inamoured by him and I thought I was in love as I am a very giving, loving nuturing and caring type of gal I began to open up to him, he had put me on a pedestal and I was uncomfortable with that as it wasn’t realistic to me. I thought I was doing all of the normal bonding type behaviours couples do, but he didn;t open up and he seemed very aloof, because I had quite an emotionally distant dad who didn;t show me much affection maybe I thought this was normal, I had the more stable job back then as well more stable than him anyway, he must of seen me coming! I can remember going to the movies with him to see “Ghost” with Demi Moore and Patrick Swazye and him just walking out of the movie theatre and leaving me their how sad is that! I asked him what happened were are you going, He just said I hate those soppy movies, we left! as I wasn’t great on boundaries I would of thought nothing of it maybe! Anyway these types of careless, rude and cruel occurances seemed to happen more regurarly and I would challenge him and argue with him and then leave and then he would beg me to come back and we would be ok again. Anyway we both decided to move away from where my family was in Christchurch and go and work and live in Auckland, before we left we had a big argument and I didn’t want to go but we made up and we went. In Auckland we stayed with some friends of his a guy he worked with, they were a nice couple with two kids. When we got up their he changed and got very arrogant he already was very cocky anyway, I remeber this one time he asked me to drive the work van and he had some of his workmates in the van. I had never driven around Auckland before anyway he yelled at me directions to a certain place and humiliated me in front of a van load of people it was really sad actually, I have lots of these humilating, degrading and soul destroying moments that he has put me through and afterwards he has no compassion, very strange when I write it down and I have compassion for myself when I re-experience some of these emotions. It is interesting though because on a soul level I was always aware that I was stronger than him and I knew instinctively he was very broken inside, I thought I could fix him! and I still had a type of compassion for him because I knew he only had me. But lets be clear I’m not in that place now. I am number one now and I have worked through all of his complex behaviours, mind games, lack of compassion, secretiveness, comparing me to my sisters, visiting my sisters behind my back after he’d hit me! having a moment with my sister in front of me! checking out other women, etc, etc,etc, I could write a book and I probably will, aren;t they just classic NPD behaviours, no I’m not crazy he is!
Me being the type of person I am I have been on a mission for many years to unravel myself and get to the core of who I am and what I am like and who I really am, that can be hard when you have had a negative stepmother filling your head with crap and fucking with you emotionally, psychogically and spiritually since you were 5 years old. I have this early memory of been sent to school wearing black tie up boy shoes, how humiliating is that how cruel and disgusting, I was such a beautiful innocent little girl when I was little, what chance have I got with parents like that obviously I didn’t feel loved and supported, interesting though I was still very popular at school and good at everything I did, top of class in all subjects good at sport but this is what I grew up around, the neighbourhood mums became my imaginary mums and they use to spoil me, or my neighbour friend would invite me to come on holiday with their family, of course my stepmum would say no! deep down I think they knew! it’s fucking surprising when I go over everything I’ve been through that I am still fricking sane and “normal” why was my dad so weak as well, jury is still out on that? I have forgiving my parents now and am on good terms with both of them but it’s sad looking back because your childhood does influence your choices in later life.

Recently my ex partner with NPD had invited me over to Australia as he said he wanted to make up for what he hadn;t done properly for his children, I was finishing an employment contract in NZ so I thought to myself Ok this will be hard for me but I feel i have’nt got all of the answers to my questions and I still haven’t been able to get parts of myself back of him or I haven’t fully detached enough from you to feel I can move on. Me being an honourable person with intergrity and intention thought I’d fight this last battle with him so I could be fully restored to myself, and work it all through. It’s been a struggle but I have been brave and I knew what my intention was going in. I wouldn’t nesecarily recommend it for others. Iv’e been in this zone for the last 9 months and as I sit here now I can say I have all the answers and feel whole again.

The last conversation I had with him before I left was this “We have never had a connection have we?” No we haven’t we have never been connected, I have never connected to you” with a smug look on his face, I then said great now I know the truth now I can move on!

He had admitted the truth to me face to face it wasn’t an apology but it was an acknowledgement. To me I was and had been used for whatever purpose suited him! this has meant I can face my ultimate truth as harsh as it is for me to stomach. I am now able to begin to heal properly and belive you me I will stay single for awhile (:

If I could give anyone any advice I would tell you to not to take as long as me to get to this point. I have wasted so many years in a confusion and I always use to feel I was being side swiped out of nowhere, this has now ended and I can have my peace back, I am quite reflective person anyway. As I haven’t really experienced true love and affection or positive regard or have an accurate understainding of it, I can see that I myself might of choosen this bad relationship when I was young so I could fit in with my peers and be normal and do what others are doing and so I wouldn’t be alone. As I have now found the last piece of the puzzle I can now move on. The last piece of my puzzle came with watching you tube last night and getting the final ephinany about my ex being a NPD personality and me enduring NPD abuse from the age of 5 years old till now, I always sort of knew but watching those videos confirmed it completely! I was watching video’s by Sam Vakin and Melanie Tonia Evans those video’s really assisted me to tidy up everything I have gone through and move on, check them out (:

#93 Krystal on 06.16.13 at 4:12 am

Jeni, thank you for your support. My son is in his teens and he understands what he is going through with these people. We live in a small town and all the kids go to the same school. He gets a lot of support from his high school, but they only can do so much. He has secured his social networking sites, but his step mom has his fathers passwords and she snipes him every chance she gets posing as his father. He has confronted his father and his father denies that such messages were sent. She makes the post and sends it to my son and deletes it so her husband won’t see what she posted. My son is smart enough that he is keeping a record of what gets posted and sent to him from his fathers account. It is sad that a person would go to such lengths to create any kind of attention on herself. One day her behavior will catch up to her and she won’t be able to get out of it.
I am hoping to find a job that will get us out of this town and my son can live free of all the bullying, gossip and lateral violence cause by this family.

#94 Kat on 06.16.13 at 9:13 am

@Luke…
Thank you so much for your advice. It’s means a lot to me. Recently I attacked the narcissist. I was so upset from being neglected and not being heard. I know now that it’s time to leave. I think I got used to my role even when I was unhappy playing it. I got used to being blamed for everything. Then I snapped. He’s fine, a few scratches but I’m mad at myself for scratching him. He had no emotion zero empathy. I wanted him to feel my pain.

#95 Maria on 06.20.13 at 12:26 pm

I was wondering if there was an inverse to the NPD? I mean specifically when the subject doesn’t look for admiration from other people but pity.

#96 Kimmo on 06.20.13 at 2:05 pm

I was looking for information about “professional victims,” people who compulsively project themselves as victims of a “narcissist” and who use this fantasy victimhood as a means of coping with their own psychological issues (which have nothing to do with being a victim of a narcissist). Are you familiar with this phenomenon?

#97 Sam on 06.21.13 at 2:12 pm

Being a victim of a person with NPD is like being in a horror movie and you’re the only one who sees the horror. When no one else sees the evil it adds to the torture.
Every word of this blog is true. I feel for the poor victims who don’t know yet what is happening to them. Being around others who truly understand and have been through it are the only people I can be with after escaping the abuse.

#98 jaya on 06.21.13 at 2:51 pm

I’ve just read this and its basically a manifest about my father and our family as victims. Thank you so much for this and your other posts which I’m reading and researching. I am finally ready to start to deal with the NPD side of things after many years of working on healing for myself, and still on the road to recovery. The gas lighting term is one I hadn’t heard of but its been experienced by us for many years. The comments are direct from my fathers mouth. The stockholm syndrome reference – I am so grateful to read this as I have suspected this in my mother and brother for many years. I managed to get away and live a long way away now and in a loving marriage and with positive friendships. But I do mourn the loss of those left behind and who still dont believe my concerns raised in the past. Thank you Jeni!

#99 Jeni Mawter on 06.21.13 at 3:36 pm

My pleasure!

#100 Jeni Mawter on 06.21.13 at 3:42 pm

Hi Maria, I think it’s the same thing. It’s still a form of attention-seeking. It’s still a form of attempting to control others. It’s still a form of narcissistic supply – it’s just that instead of feeding off admiration, they feed off pity.

#101 Marie on 06.25.13 at 4:40 am

Thank you so much for this. I found it after having suspected someone I know may have NPD and searching for information on it.

#102 Howard Buttler on 06.26.13 at 6:10 am

My name is Howard Buttler, i live in London, and I’m happily married with a lovely wife and three children. I had a very big problem with my wife few months ago, to the extent that she left the house with our kids to her parents’ for almost 5 months. All efforts to bring them back proved abortive. Friends and Family were all in concern and my very close mate gave me an advice concerning a spell caster, and he quote.“There’s someone who can handle your situation, he’s always ready and able to do anything related to spiritual matters, i will like you to contact him with his email: prophetjumamaspirituality@gmail.com. I never believed in spell casting, but he convinced me and i had no choice than to follow his advice, because i never dream of loosing my lovely wife and i was desperate. So i contacted him via email and explained my situation. He told me that I’ll get my wife back in two days after the spell is completed. I was skeptical, until the second day when my wife called and said she was coming HOME…..I was Flabbergasted!!! That’s how i got my family back through spiritual means and our relationship is now stronger than ever. One of the price i was asked to pay was to tell it to people around me that problems like this, can always be solved by Prophet Jumama. So, my advice to you out there is to visit this Prophet and tell him your problems. He’s capable of handling anything spiritual and spell casting.

#103 Julianna on 06.26.13 at 10:33 pm

I have been married to a man with NPD for 20+ years and my awakening about what he is only happened 12 months ago. I could never understand why I was so unhappy, confused, self doubting, depressed, etc, etc. Now I know why. My life has been horrible and devoid of the most fundamental pleasures such as love, caring, understanding, companionship, etc. I am struggling now to find myself and feel lost in a sea of mixed emotions. I have been disassociating for so long and repressing my true feelings that it has become second nature. I now have so much work to do to heal myself. I go to see a psychologist and although she is guiding me towards emotional healing I feel as though she just doesn’t understand the full impact that a true NPD has on a victim and how utterly soul destroying their abuse is. I’m still in the relationship physically but mentally I am no longer fully engulfed by his narcissism. I need to heal my inner self and gain strength before I can consider leaving the relationship. I feel like I am in a never ending spiral of confusing emotions. Your article was one of the best I have read regarding victims. It is so comforting to know that there are people out there that do fully understand. Thank you.

#104 Danny on 06.29.13 at 12:33 am

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Continue the good work!

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#107 Luke on 07.03.13 at 1:27 am

@ Kat
Your very welcome I wish you all the best and makes me very happy to think of you taking your dignity back.

@ufc 162 online
All I can say is what the?
Is that a busted translation app?

#108 Gladys N. Crespo-Ortega on 07.03.13 at 8:40 am

wow, I am thankful for information like yours. I have been a victim of different types of abuse and have been working hard to break with those cycles in my life. In my experience I have to say that breaking the cycles are outreageously difficult, painful and you need to be ready to fight against all odds. I want to share something I wrote to help people understand what a victim has to face, and my personal reason to fight back and continue to fight back, because my work is not done yet. Here is it:

A Letter from someone who has been there
by Gladys N. Crespo-Ortega
Why stay in it?

Because it is more painful to try to get out of it than to stay in it.

Because it is easier to believe you are wrong (and you have been well trained to think like that), than to deal with people not believing the experiences you have gone through day after day, moment after moment, which sounds too bad to be real.

Because that person has the ability to gain more trust on others outside the picture than you. That person has been blessed with charm.

Because that person knows the power that he/she has over you and the people around who could help you.

Because that person knows how to manipulate the system strengths, and use your deepest weaknesses against you.

Because your broken state of mind will betray you and will make you look like you are just blowing things out of proportion.

Because when you look for help you are so beat up, exhausted, and confused, that you do not have the strength to deal with breaking the barriers of ignorance, judgment, and reasoning of people who are unfamiliar with the situation.

Because you are so tired from surviving, than looking for evidence to try to present in your favor looks almost impossible, for you have no strength left.

Because you never thought you needed to keep record of anything to present as evidence for you never saw the need for it.

Because that person has already stripped you out of external support, so you have to build up a network when you do not have strength left to breathe, and you do not have a clue who to trust.

Because most of the people around you do not know anything about how to deal with your situation and will act upon normal judgment and normal common sense which don’t apply.

Because you know that all the reasons above will set you up for failure and you will end up in more danger than when you started trying to get out.

Why decide to fight against the big odds?

Because you already have lost too much that there is not much to loose anymore. Because if you are going to die anyways, is better to die trying, and leave the foundation for others to build on it until the path of freedom is finished.
Because you have come to trust God for the best even when you know your life, your image, your dreams, your relationships, your everything is in jeopardy, and even when you know others may see it the opposite way.

#109 van on 07.07.13 at 3:03 am

My sister has been a problem in our family for many many years. I just realized that her problem is NPD. I kept being confused that she was so out of touch..never asking for permission, never feeling guilty, never feeling anything for anyone except herself. She hurt me continuously then blamed me. She never ever had any sympathy or empathy but she would from afar make it appear she cared about animals and abuse which I think she did because she saw herself in them but she never cared about me in the way I needed. She lied and manipulated me against my brother particularly after our parents died. She controlled me until Nov 2012 when AT LAST I stood up for myself and told her NO!! Now she will not speak to me and I’m happy because I am now free of her abuse. I thought at first I would be scared of her abandonment but now I see I am free. But i need help to get through this because no one knows how insidious these people are. they hide in plain sight as they confuse and win at any costs. I am glad to find others so I do not feel so alone. This is not my fault which she had me believing it was. I have so much anger towards her.

#110 Rik on 07.08.13 at 6:42 am

Yeah that’s all good, but how? I can barely get the energy to enter the bedroom, yet alone put this in her hand and say “I can’t take any more, this is you”
I’ll spend 25mins finding out why am to blame, and if we break up I’ll never get to see my daughter, no one will believe me am 6ft4″ everyone thinks she’s wonderful…

#111 Danielle on 07.09.13 at 5:48 am

I am going through a break up with what I think may have been a narcissistic boyfriend. Can someone tell me if these signs are indicative of him having the disorder?

So to give you guys a little background story into our relationship, I knew my ex all through my adolescent years and we were always very good friends and hung out in the same circles. When we were 18 years old, we started dating. He struggled with addiction problems in the beginning and I had told him I could not date someone who was involved in drugs and encouraged him to get the help he needed. He went to an in-patient treatment center and I supported him through it, and in the weeks following his release, I continued to help him through his recovery process. As time went on, we began dating. Everything was great and I had never been happier in my life. A year into our relationship, he decided to join the Marines. I was nervous about being in a long-distance relationship, especially because we spent every second together up until he left for boot camp, but I ultimately decided that I loved him too much to let a long distance situation break up our relationship. So, I stayed in the relationship and patiently waited and supported him throughout his time in the Marines. He was stationed in California and I was living, working, and going to school in our home state of Massachusetts, so it was not easy to maintain a relationship, but I put thousands and thousands of dollars into visiting him as much as I could to keep our love alive. He was also deployed twice to Afghanistan, both times for 7 months, which was also hard because we could rarely even speak. There were definitely bumps in our relationship, there were times he would come home on leave and act distant or choose partying with friends over spending time with me, and it hurt me alot. However, I made excuse after excuse for him because of his deployments and the stress he had in his life. Plus, like clockwork, every time he came home and acted that way, he would apologize and beg for forgiveness and I always gave him the benefit of the doubt.

Well, fast forwarding a little bit, this year was his last year in the Marines, and he was to be released in March of 2013. We had been dating for 5 years. He had expressed wishes of wanting to stay and live out in California once he got out, so I was looking into transferring schools and applying to jobs out there. I was so happy for him to finally have some freedom in his life, that I basically was willing to relocate to wherever as long as he was doing what he wanted to do and loved. It was hard to tell my friends and family that I most likely would be moving to California, and if I expressed any concern to my ex about it, he would get all frustrated and withdraw from me for days. So, I felt like I wasn’t really getting the support that I needed from him. Around the same time, I received news that I had to get a biopsy of some of my breast tissue done. I was very, very scared so I didn’t really tell anyone after I first found out, besides my ex. His reaction was somewhat cold: when I expressed that I was nervous, he simply replied “Haven’t you had one before?” I was a little disappointed by his reaction because I had indeed gotten a biopsy before, but it doesn’t make it any less scary for the next time you get one. But anyways, I brushed that off and just hoped for the best. Unfortunately, my biopsy results were atypical, precancerous, and to take the safe measure, I had a very small lumpectomy procedure scheduled. When I told him about this, he seemed a little more supportive this time, asking a lot of questions as though he was concerned. It made me feel a little more loved to know that he may be worried about my unfortunate results.

However, a few days later, I realized I must have misinterpreted his skepticism as concern, because on Christmas night he called me extremely intoxicated and starting accusing me of making the entire thing up. He was yelling over me and asking the same question over and over again: “Do you have cancer or not?!?” and I was trying to explain that the tissue was precancerous and that is not a good thing so we were removing the area and hoping that no other areas of my breast came back positive for cancerous cells, but he kept yelling the same thing “Do you have cancer or not?!?”. I felt stupid and I felt betrayed by him and I could not even believe that I was explaining myself in this situation to him. He said that he was with his friend and his friend’s wife and the wife had said that she has had plenty of biopsies and it doesn’t mean anything. I explained that it was great for her that her biopsies went well, but my results were not good so that is why it was a more serious issue. I was so humiliated that he had even shared my medical concerns with two people I had never met, and now they were all discussing it together and calling my bluff. It was awful. I finally hung up the phone and he texted me “Not even trying to sound mean but I just don’t love you anymore.” I couldn’t believe he was saying all these things to me at all, nevermind on Christmas night. I just tried my best to go to sleep.

About 3 days later, he texted me apologizing and saying that he didn’t mean it when he said he didn’t love me and that he hopes my procedure goes well and saying that he wanted to keep me in his life. Like an idiot, I accepted his apology and we moved on from it. About 2 months later (a month before he was going to be getting out of the Marines), I was hanging out with a bunch of mutual friends and I heard one mention that he was going to be driving home from California to Massachusetts with Tom (my ex) when he got out of the Marines. I thought it was odd that he had not mentioned this to me, so I asked Tom about it. He immediately went on the defensive and denied that this friend had ever said that and accused me of being a crazy girlfriend and making it all up. However, 2 weeks later he admitted that the friend was indeed going out to visit.

From this point on, things progressively got worse. I noticed him being very flirtatious with a bunch of random girls on his Instagram account. It was very humiliating to me, as he was doing it for everyone to see and he had a very serious girlfriend of 5 years. When I confronted him about it, he did not answer and I didn’t hear from him for 2 whole weeks. Randomly one day he texted me and said “I got out of the Marines today, thanks for being there for me through tough times”. And of course, me being the pathetic girlfriend that glorified every little positive thing he did, I responded saying how happy I was and proud of him I was. However, a few days later I found out extremely devastating news. One of my girlfriends was in a bar and overheard Tom’s ex girlfriend talking about him and her got into a contract marriage. She told me this and I was in utter shock. The girl was his ex-girlfriend, from our hometown, who we went to school with for years, and she was openly talking about being married to my boyfriend in front of a bunch of people in a bar. I confronted Tom about it, and once again he put on the defensive. He admitted to getting married to his ex 2 YEARS INTO OUR RELATIONSHIP, while home on leave, behind my back. THe two of them snuck off and went to the courthouse and then he left to Afghanistan, and the entire time I sat at home waiting for him to return, he was sending this other girl checks in the mail every month and she was using his insurance. He kept telling me it wasn’t a big deal and to get over it because no feelings were involved, but I don’t care what the reason was for doing it, they went behind my back and I was lied to for 2 entire years while I stuck by his side and supported him all along. Once he got angry by me explaining that it WAS a big deal, he also admitted to cheating on me with a bunch of his coworkers, whom he had always assured me were just good friends. I was so disgusted because I had trusted him so much and gave him so much freedom and never suspected any of this.

I was obviously very upset by the news, it felt like my whole world shattered around me. The man that I had dreamed of marrying for 5 whole years, had waited for 4 years of long distance, had supported him through addictions and military life, who I trusted with my all and was willing to move across the country and uproot my life for, had betrayed me in so many different ways. I was yelling and crying on the phone with him and he just hung up. Shortly after, I got an extremely verbally abusive text message from him placing all the blame on me for the demise of our relationship. He never once apologized or showed any remorse.

The next day he began his trip across country, and he never said another word to me. He went to raves and stopped at all these crazy spring break places along the way and was posting comments about all the beautiful girls he was seeing and how much fun he was having. It was heartbreaking for me, because I suddenly felt like my boyfriend, who was also my best friend, was just a complete stranger. He showed no care at all towards how I was doing. The second I questioned him, he had just taken off.

Somewhere along his trip, he accidentally text messaged me a picture of one of his friends posing with 2 girls at a club. This friend of his had a girlfriend back home, and Tom must have been scared that I would show her (which I would never get involved in) but he texted me this long threatening text message in which he told me that if I ever showed anyone that picture to get back at him, he would take the intimate pictures I had sent him while he was deployed in Afghanistan and post them on every single social media website there is–instagram, facebook, google, youtube. It was such an aggressively mean text message that I was in shock. This man had cheated on me, married someone behind my back, and emotionally damaged me by never even apologizing or explaining himself to me, and then the next time I hear from him it is something like that…it just absolutely killed me. I was besides myself and couldn’t even leave my room for days.

When he finally did get back to our hometown, I still did not hear from him. It has now been months that he has been home and he parties and goes out and socializes with everyone as if he has no shame at all. He still has not apologized to me about anything. I have heard that he says the reason we broke up is because I texted him too much during his cross country trip home…when in reality, we weren’t even regularly talking during that except for his threatening message that he sent me (HA!). So, it is very frustrating to see someone who has done so many horrible things to me getting along just fine in life and having everything work out for him. He seems very happy and he has actually maintained a friendship with the ex girlfriend whom he married, and they both look at me as being the enemy even though they are the 2 people who hurt me.

I am very confused by the whole situation, and he never gave me any closure because we were never able to have an adult conversation like I had wished. He was too defensive to talk on the phone and would only text message hurtful things. So basically, he just left me without an explanation or anything. All of this has left me in a deep depression. It is hard enough to cope with the realization that he cheated on me in so many drastic ways, and then it is even harder to cope with him being back in town and in the same social circle as me, acting as though I never even existed. It has caused me to lose my self confidence, question my own worth (why would he do this to me?), feel not good enough for him, and I’m just plain sad that what I thought was a 5 year long serious relationship, was all based on lies. I had waited so many lonely nights for 4 years of his military lifestyle, and he took advantage of my trust and my love. I was by no means perfect but I always loved and supported him, and the few times I needed his support in return, he ran away. All of this has made me feel very disposeable to him. The worst part is, I still love him very much, as much as I have every reason to hate him for what he’s done to me. We live in a very small town and I am nowhere ready to be able to handle seeing him with another girl. I am so scared of how that will make me feel, and I know it is inevitable. I find myself becoming so sad about what happened and then becoming so angry at him, and then so angry at the universe by allowing him to be so unaffected by this break up while I struggle so harshly with it.

I’m just not sure how to get through this. I have never felt this low in my life, and I never ever expected him to even be capable of hurting me in this way. A few months ago I thought I was going to be living in California with the man of my dreams, and now I am stuck in this mess. On top of everything, he acts angry and hateful towards me, as though I was the one who hurt him. It all makes no sense at all. I am so confused and so unbelievably heartbroken and devastated. I am sorry for the length of this, but I just would like to hear some thoughts or ideas, or even related experiences if any of you have some. THanks!

Again, sorry for the length! It was quite the crazy situation…I just want to know whether or not this may be an example of a narcissist. I am very confused by the things he has said and done because I thought we had a mutual love for each other.

#112 Jeni Mawter on 07.09.13 at 3:44 pm

Hi Danielle,

I have read your post a couple of times and really feel for you. The one line in the whole thing that I would like to address is this:

The worst part is, I still love him very much, as much as I have every reason to hate him for what he’s done to me.

My question is, why? Which of the following features attracts you to this person?

-lying
-conceited
-zero empathy
-exploiting
-alienating
-self-obsession
-controlling
-manipulative
-arrogant
-abusive
-undermining
-destabilising
-shaming
-blaming
-deceitful
-vengeful
-distrustful
-attention-seeking
-entitled/superior
-self-serving
-narcissistic rage

As a victim you have probably been in a cycle of denial. You may have felt fear, or shame or self-doubt. I’m sure I could add a stack of other feelings:

-bewildered
-frustrated
-confused
-feel used
-exhausted
- inadequate
-neglected
-disempowered
-lonely-
-alienated
-vulnerable
-undeserving of love
-misunderstood
-frightened of confrontation
-shattered
-fear of going crazy

You need to seek help to heal. Awareness is one thing, but for emotional healing to take place you need to empower yourself, and reclaim yourself through setting healthy boundaries etc.

Good luck with this!

Jeni

#113 Danielle on 07.09.13 at 3:51 pm

Jeni,

Thanks so much for responding. I started seeing a therapist since I noticed how he was making me feel and you’re completely right. I was so scared of confronting him throughout our entire relationship–even when I thought things were good–that I should have known something was wrong. He definitely has caused me to feel all of the things you listed above, and I am so mad at myself for allowing him to have that much control over me. I am also so mad at him for misusing my trust and love as a way to control me. It is so exhausting trying to figure out why he did this to me and put me through so much pain when I never hurt him, and I want so badly to get over it, but it has been so difficult. I feel like he has broken me down completely. I am trying so hard to pick up the pieces, but it is very difficult for me to not blame myself or thinking there must be some reason I deserved this fate.

#114 Lonnie on 07.12.13 at 1:34 pm

I am a 60 year old who grew up with an NPD older sister. It seems like the article on NVS describes me and my life to a tee. It feels very validating to see my experiences and resulting difficulties in print! Thank you. Are there any books you would highly recommend?

#115 Jeni Mawter on 07.12.13 at 2:45 pm

Hi Lonnie,

I’m delighted that this post has brought validation to your life.

I often think that victims of someone with a Narcissistic Personality Disorder are in fact Double Victims – once of the NPD, and once of a society or community who have not recognised, or validated – what a victim has gone through.

As to books, I’m not in a position to recommend any specific one, but I would recommend you read, read, read up if you can.

Warm wishes,

Jeni

#116 Kat on 07.18.13 at 3:29 pm

@Luke
Thank you Luke. I have ended things permanently or perhaps I should state that he has. He was caught in a lie and he ended it but made me think that I has. Instead of me having a complete meltdown like I usually do I instead agreed with his decision and said goodbye after he told me to have a nice life. We had just came back from vacation to visit his family which was in itself a pleasant experience with his family but hell with him. He put up a nice front for them it was all a facade. I learned so much from this experience. One thing I learned in almost 2 years is that the only individual you can change is yourself and also it is better to just be honest with yourself and suck it up and call it quits if something isn’t working out. Unfortunately I let my ego do my talking for a long time because I was afraid of being alone and equally afraid of him finding someone else because he had always said I was the problem and I believed him. For anyone reading this: You can get out! It will hurt a little at first cause I’m experiencing it right now but I believe that ultimately you will find yourself again. All your precious gifts you allowed to push to the back because it was all about him/her will now be put back in the to do list! I can’t wait to start travelling again, to cut my hair short (he liked long hair), to focus on my spirituality (he didn’t believe in Karma etc). I won’t have to be at his beck and call anymore. It’s a foreign realization for me and at first I will feel awkward but I know ultimately it will be like riding a bike again. First I wil swerve but then I will steer in a straight line. Good luck to you all. Much love!!!!!!

#117 Roxy on 07.19.13 at 9:52 pm

One year no contact with narc mom, and sister. 2 years no contact with narc dad.
My life is a lot better, and I do wish for the family I never had. I really missed out, but then I am reminded that some people even had it worse than me!

I didn’t know how I found my voice. But one day, after overlooking my father’s narc behaviour ALL the years, he decided to try it in front of my boyfriend. And I just flipped. How dare you think you can talk to me like this in front of my boyfriend, you that have been nothing but a source of pain. You will never ever talk to me that way again. And I will not waste anymore of my energy on your bad behaviour. He promptly told me to F off in front of my boyfriend, which just goes to show there was never any love there.
My mother was all nice, sweetness and light. I thought she had changed because she became a grandmother. Poor stupid idiot me! No, this was for my boyfriends benefit. She was recruiting him as a source of supply. When he wasn’t around, her old behaviours came back.
She tried flirting with him on fb- disgusting. When we got engaged she pretended to be pleased. She wasn’t. Before the wedding, she told us she was too busy to book a flight. I was like, here we go. The start of how she is going to twist it into something about her. I promptly told her if she is so busy, she is very much needed there where she is and shouldn’t come.
She didnt like that, she then tried very much to come, but I said everything was already sorted I wasn’t going to do everything again to add one person.
She told my boyfriend how much she wanted to be there for me. But he’d already seen her email about being too busy to book a flight, care or show any interest generally about the most important day of my life.
I had a great wedding, everyone was instructed to not breath a word about my family. I’m done hoping and being hostage. Stay like that, I don’t care. I’m out of the damn fog.
She still tried on LinkedIn to tell my husband to tell me I am loved. Of course I am you stupid narc, I have friends and a husband that loves me. As if I fear that I am not loved in my life. Stupid narc, as a very passive person I do wish I had become outwardly angry sooner. Instead of turning it on myself.
But in any case, I am no contact with any of my family. Not one single person. Maybe I will when everyone comes to accept that I am no longer accepting the scapegoat role- and I also know longer take any bull. That person is gone to them. They can’t be trusted.
I just hope my parents don’t live too much longer, but then evil doesn’t die!
I took my life back, I owe to myself to not take the abuseof my narc family and live a good life.
I stand proud in the truth that I am a survivor of child abuse.
I hope this narc behaviour is not in the genes I can’t handle having narc kids.

#118 Pawley on 07.21.13 at 9:45 am

I was pursued by a man for a year and my gut feeling said not to get involved. He was so persistent and charming that I caved in. During the beginning of our dating, he wa s the most wonderful man I had ever met. He built me up and told me how beautiful I was, smart, strong…you name it, he knew exactly what to say to make me feel loved. After a few months, I asked why he had not taken me to his home. He claimed he lived with three guys and his place was a mess. I accepted it but then I noticed he was never available on the weekends…especially Sunday. When I asked him, he made me feel like I was crazy for asking…and reminded me of when we went out ONE Sunday. After 5 months, I did a background check on him and found out where he lived and also listed was “Maria” with same last name. I confronted him and he told me they were divorced but he lived in a guest house. I should have dumped him right then and there. Shortly after he started treating me like I was an option instead of important. I started to get depressed and then I started treating him the same way…like he was an option. I became someone I didnt want to become. I knew after six months I was just being used for sex. I just broke it off on Weds and texted him. I told him if he contacted me ever again, I would call his wife. I am so distraught over this and it was only a short relationship. I cannot even imagine the pain and fear that some of you that have stayed in marriages for 20 years must feel! I was a strong woman with a good self esteem and in six months I felt raped. I am going to recover and I will be strong again…I encourage you to get out and do the same. This man has two children who I am sure have been affected by his behavior. Don’t let yours pay the consequences for not getting out! I have never encountered such a con man in my life but now I know what to look for thanks to sites like this and others. No one should live an abused life with a sick person such as one with NPD…Take care and God bless you all

#119 kate on 07.24.13 at 5:13 pm

hi jenni.
well were to begin I’ve been married to narcissist for 13 yrs. Then recently we’ve been separated for a better part of the year now. And when we do talk its what can I do for him to make him feel better, and what can I do to fix things between us, and I’m loaded down with guilt and I feel hopeless like did I make the right decision and he told me if I don’t move back with him were done. Now mind you I left because of the emotional hell I was under, and his belittling me and alcohol abuse. But to me it just seems like he wants to control everything and doesn’t care about my feeling at all. But a lot of the time I am racked with guilt and feeling depressed. I often do not know witch way to turn. Because I also feel as though I suffer from co depended issues. I left feeling lost, lonely and very confused about the whole thing. He’s very good with adding guilt.am I wrong for feeling this way?because all I remember about being married to him is walking on eggshells around him so didn’t upset him and being depressed and feeling very dumb. Like nothing I did was right. He always told me I was imagining things when I would see him texting in the middle of the night. That I was crazy. That every argument we had would because it was something im not doing right.

#120 Jeni Mawter on 07.26.13 at 3:53 pm

Hi Kate,

Accept that your feelings of guilt and depression are influencing your relationship and that it’s up to you to seek help for these. I believe that many, many people who have been in a long term relationship with a NPD would feel exactly the same way. I wish you all the best in your endeavours to overcome your guilt and depression!

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#122 Cathy on 07.27.13 at 9:47 am

Hi,…I too have a problem with a friend who I’m sure has NPD. I met him over 3 years and 7 months ago on a dating site. Soon after meeting him he told me all about his business,..which I was interested in,…but the problem is all of my money went into it and more. In all this time I have gotten no money at all out of the business,…just lies, secrecy,…him taking off to the States,..having no phone,..no way to contact him,..he acts rude,..puts me down, etc. etc. etc.

He has no permanent address,…tells me nothing of what he’s doing, and keeps insisting that he will be finding a younger woman,..he’s 58, I’m 54 and too old apparently. He wants a younger woman to have a child with. Don’t know who would want him as he never has anything. He has a large family and doesn’t want me to know how his mom is (i used to call her before) and heard she had surgery. Now i have no way to reach her. I feel hurt and upset all the time….He’s given me nothing,..but its a terrible thing when we really do see the good things in a person.

He constantly lies, talks big and NEVER comes through with anything.

What do you think of this situation.? I told him he had NPD,..he said that’s awful and that Barack Obama has that. Well if Obama has it, its definitely for the good.

#123 bklein on 07.28.13 at 9:42 am

I even know where to begin after being married to a this maniac for 15 years. The gas lighting, cheating, the degrading comments. Being alienated from his life unless he needed a family photo to improve his image. I don’t know if I will ever be ok again. We are apart now for one year and I can finally see the how crazy it all was. This took lots of therapy with a loving and supportive therapist. I had to have the truth beaten into me. My though process was so muddled that I could not even think clearly anymore. It was a living nightmare. I pray for all the victims of this kind of abuse. Now he wants me to feel bad for him! I have so much rage at him and myself for allowing this to happen but I didn’t even know was happening. I thought I was losing my mind. The circular reasoning the lies and the gaslighting. I think it is an inherited behavior. His grandmother committed suicide at the hands of his grandfather. I am finally OUT. I will be damned if I will take my own life for that piece of garbage. I pity his new 23 year old girlfriend. She is going to be his next victim. Keep posting please

#124 Lynn on 07.31.13 at 6:05 am

This makes me so sad. I was emotionally abused by narcissists my whole life. It took me years to actually “SEE” my own “stockholm syndrome”. I felt and still feel ashamed of my adult choices. I thought I should know better by now. I tell myself that many women have experienced this abuse and that I am… uhhh…”lucky?” to have this insight and not repeat it. Some women have no clue an never leave.

#125 Rox on 08.01.13 at 3:47 am

Jeni,
I was amazed and gratified to find your blog. Three days ago, my narcissist friend dumped me after I sent him an email offering to lend him support if he needed to vent. He completely turned my offer around, calling me too affectionate, too demanding of “special time” with him, and saying he’s changed and has no desire to have a personal relationship (we’ve been friends for over two decades) with me. It struck me as odd that my offer of help would trigger this response, and then I found your blog. I’m absolutely thunderstruck! My friends and my husband had said this guy was an abuser and I should dump him, but I never let myself see it and worried all along that I was the cause of the problems. Now his wanting to control me (he decides where we go to eat and when we should be finished eating, chastising me for being too slow) and keeping me off balance (he walks away from me when he decides a get-together is over, including leaving me alone on dark, dangerous streets) make perfect sense. This sounds exactly like what you’re describing as narcissistic behavior, doesn’t it? Do you have any tips on how I can give my confidence/self-esteem a quick boost and how I can avoid falling back into this relationship, should he want me back to feed his needs. God bless you for writing this. You’ve lifted a great weight from my heart.

#126 Star on 08.07.13 at 3:17 pm

Superb blog you have here but I was wanting to know if you knew of any user discussion forums that cover the same topics talked about here?
I’d really love to be a part of online community where I can get responses from other experienced people that share the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. Cheers!

#127 Sharon on 08.13.13 at 1:58 pm

It has been exactly one year since I found out that I had been conned and that he was a narcissist and sociopath. I don’t want to bring it back up with friends or family, but still have a need to talk about it and then move forward again.

I think his condition would be labeled as narcissistic vulnerability. After dating for awhile, he moved in with me, with a hard luck story. A few months later, he convinced me that he had gotten a serious concussion from work, which lasted six months, followed by the discovery of a brain tumor. I took care of him that entire time. He convinced me of an offer of a new exciting job, so I quit my job of 12 years (I own that one). It was all lies, everything was a lie and he was brilliant in his storytelling. He didn’t criticize me at all, so my experience is different than many others. He was always dejected, stating that he had nothing to offer me, that he was less than a man, etc. In looking back, I could see that he was unable to feel any empathy for anyone but himself. The day that I learned that it was all lies, I also learned that he had been in prison for years, for petty larceny and forgery.

I got him out immediately, towed his broken down old truck, sent his dog to a shelter, and threw out anything he had. I got another job, got help from family and friends, and I’m back on my feet again.

I still trust people because I choose to and would only be a victim if I allowed this experience to change me. I’ve been through alot, though, over this past year, in terms of experiencing anxiety, due to this experience and the stress that comes with starting a new job.

I don’t think about it anymore, except of course when I realized today that it was exactly one year since I had discovered I had been conned. I don’t blame myself. I’m a kind and compassionate person and, although that may make me more vulnerable to con artists, it also positions me to be valued by someone in the future who is also kind and compassionate.

For those of you who have been conned, just be kind to yourself as you go through recovery. You will feel anxious and stressed. Just take care of yourself, make sure you eat healthy and sleep as much as you need. Read others’ stories online, to understand it all. Stop blaming yourself. Just focus on caring for yourself. Once you learn to love yourself again, you will be ready to move forward into your future.

#128 jennifer on 08.13.13 at 5:23 pm

thank you for this and the Gaslighting page, so much. I’m in the middle of a contentious marriage, proposed only by he [i think] npd or -path I’m married to, his having seen my family wasn’t there for me, and isolating me among his abusive tribe. I called it on the spot, and he becomes regularly abusive when I mention his abuse, or denies it and blames his actions and words on me. It’s so delightful. I’m afraid of him at this point given I still talk of his repairing these actions as potential for repair, like an idiot, I know, yes I know, due to his having a wife is vital to a promotion he’s up for. He knows I’ve given to him and made his life better, yet acknowledges also that he’s been unhappy since the beginning when I didn’t know or see any of it, yet he rejected me in all ways since the first day of our marriage. I’m so discouraged having always wanted to be married, in the way it’s supposed to be, negotiation, and mutual agreement, though this former child abuse victim still unable to say he was abused, has broken every agreement we’ve made, gone through all the abuse actions/words listed on all abuse lists of actions and words. I’m so tired…. and not quite sure how to gather the strength I need to divorce the guy even while he insists on it, and has been threatening it and telling me as he did two days ago, that he loves me and does not want divorce. His family is quite monied, and I actually fear at this point that this position he’ll have to miss if he is going through a divorce and won’t be voted in for, might put me in danger. ugh, and where do I find help. I’ve never been with someone so ugly, if even disrespectful, I’m sad, feel like a failure, and afraid.

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#130 InaDip on 08.14.13 at 9:12 am

I am born into this and my parents are going along with my siblings abuse. They used to and sometimes still do it too: Physically and mentally but more mentally. Lucky for me we don´t fight often any more. I am currently looking for a job to get out of my parents house and get away from everything. It get´s harder everytime i try to do something just for me so i keep it hidden and just show my depression. It works for some time. Does anybody have any tips on how to remove myself safe and quik from this situation? I do not want them to sabotage me anymore. I am very tired and just want out. Sorry for my bad English btw, i´m Dutch :)

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#132 leven on 08.20.13 at 12:54 am

I am supposed to be somewhere, but just can`t move – have to keep reading.

Been crying the whole time – for those of us who still suffer and those who got out.

(Seems to be an epidemic of sociopaths).

Mine divorced me (thank God) in need of new narcissistic supply…it`s been 7 years.
He still owns me.
He owns my baby.
It will never be different.

In a different time of age, I`d shot him for what he has done to me (us).

I just refuse to accept that they´re getting away with this.

#133 Debbie on 08.20.13 at 3:38 pm

when I read your page I couldn’t believe that I finally found out what, when how and when. I was bought up where co-dependency was the norm and I also had a narcissistic parent and consequently it turns out that my brother has followed in the parents footsteps, I didn’t realise this until much later after losing my job my home my relationship I just managed to salvage but I’ve been living with the exact symptoms described in your blog, thoughts of suicide etc. My whole world was turned upside down when I allowed a certain individual into my life. Consequently I have been hospitalised for my condition I know I suffered from terrible post traumatic stress disorder or so I was told but at the time I feel it was a bit more severe than that I couldn’t think straight I lost my confidence anyhow it’s been 7 years since it all started happening well it was gradual and it all began many years ago. I became aware of NPD only recently and that’s when I got onto the web and started searching finally I came across your blog and it all fell into place. Thankyou for clearing up a lot of confusion now I have some clarity about my condition and so will many others.

#134 mr micheal on 08.21.13 at 5:02 am

An amazing testimony on a spell caster who brought my wife back to me.. My name is Micheal smith i live in Australia,and I`m happily married to a lovely and caring wife,with two kids A very big problem occurred in my family seven months ago,between me and my wife so terrible that she took the case to court for a divorce she said that she never wanted to stay with me again,and that she did not love me anymore So she packed out of my house and made me and my children passed through severe pain. I tried all my possible means to get her back,after much begging,but all to no avail and she confirmed it that she has made her decision,and she never wanted to see me again. So on one evening,as i was coming back from work,i met an old friend of mine who asked of my wife So i explained every thing to her,so she told me that the only way i can get my wife back,is to visit a spell caster,because it has really worked for her too So i never believed in spell,but i had no other choice,than to follow her advice. Then she gave me the email address of the spell caster whom she visited.{ogbapaullovespellcaster@gmail.com}. So the next morning,i sent a mail to the address she gave to me,and the spell caster assured me that i will get my wife back the next 3days what an amazing statement!! I never believed,so he spoke with me,and told me everything that i need to do. Then the next 3days, So surprisingly, my wife who did not call me for the past {5}months,gave me a call to inform me that she was coming back So Amazing!! So that was how she came back that same day,with lots of love and joy,and she apologized for her mistake,and for the pain she caused me and my children. Then from that day,our relationship was now stronger than how it were before,by the help of a spell caster . So, i will advice you out there to kindly visit the same temple {ogbapaullovespellcaster@gmail.com},if you are in any condition like this,or you have any problem related of “bringing your ex back.all thanks to great Dr Ogba for bringing back my wife,and brought great joy to my family once again.

#135 Irene on 08.22.13 at 8:27 pm

I know what this is like because I come from an NPD home and cannot get out. Its frustrating and emotionally exhausting. Plus a lot of favoritism involved and I am the “crazy one” its making me sick physically, mentally, and emotionally. I don’t have support system that will help me out. My own boyfriend isn’t around to help me or have support.

#136 Irene on 08.22.13 at 8:28 pm

Its all I want. Real support from some one who says he will always be there. I am feeling devastated.

#137 how to bowl a hook on 08.22.13 at 8:44 pm

I rarely leave remarks, however i did a few searching and wound up here Narcissistic Victim Syndrome | Jeni Mawter’s Blog. And I do have some questions for you if it’s allright.

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#138 Jane on 08.23.13 at 2:21 am

I’m 63 years young. The man (child) I was with for nearly 11 years broke up with me more than 10 months ago. I am still reeling from the shock of HOW cruelly & deceitfully he did it …How he moved directly into another relationship.. and HOW he was engaged within 6 months. Sometimes my gut sensed ‘who’ he really was, but my heart either couldn’t or wouldn’t. It feels outrageous now to know his new ‘love’ is CONSISTENTLY getting all the decency and kindness I was only sporadically given …and the worst part for me (since I’m usually so kind-hearted) is I really, really WANT him to mess up. Pathetic what a N can create.

#139 Jay on 08.23.13 at 7:04 am

I am currently with a great woman that spent 20 years with a man that is a narcissist. She broke free and for some time struggled with it always thinking of going back even though she knew she would be worse off. Even now after a year she goes through times where she romanticizes there relationship or him in general. She told me she was in love with him at one time and when she realized how he was she thought she could fix him. Of course that just gave him more control.
I try to help her all the time but there are times I just don’t understand. When he is nice to her you can see her light up and want to believe everything he says, then when he is nasty( I mean nasty like I have not seen before) she stresses to a point of almost crawling into a shell. She has gotten better but it is still there.
I have told her that she needs to get counseling but know that will not happen.
The things I know that this man has done to her would make most peoples hair stand on end and those are only the things I know of.
How she could have the reactions she does is beyond me. He continues to try and control her but since she is not with him any longer he doesn’t have the control he wants. This does not stop him!
How can I help her? Why even though she says she does not love him any longer and hasn’t for years strive for his approval or just to be nice to her? Even though she knows what he is why are her emotions still tied to his actions?
She is a great woman and to the outside world appears strong and assured but when it come to him she is a basket case.

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#142 SCARED BUT EMPOWERED on 08.27.13 at 4:17 pm

I’ve recently realised my husband of 12 years is a narcissist. He attempted to have an affair with my friend (she showed me the texts, he couldn’t deny it). So after thinking I was crazy, imagining things and outright unworthy of love I searched for answers. I found blog after blog from women telling my own life story.
My husband is a text book narcissist. He’s never wrong (even when proven wrong). He’s always the best man for the job. He can’t handle our children having an opinion or a thought different to his own. Every compliment is followed by a but or an except for and he pours on the affection to suit his owns needs and retracts it just as quick whenever we may actually be building a little self esteem.
He (jokingly) puts everyone down all the time without exception. And he always has to be the centre of attention ALWAYS.
I now see him for what he IS. A pathetic shell of a man, who has no idea who he is. I love him, I know why he’s the way he is. Neglectful, uninterested self indulgent parents, who allowed him to raise himself. While taking care of their own selfish needs they allowed him to be bullied (extreme bullying) and placed him in the care of a family friend who used him for his own sick sexual needs.
However my pity is no longer for him it is for myself and my children. He can no longer convince me that it is my fault or that I’m crazy. I feel strong, energised and above all FREE.
I am no longer his extension, my eyes are wide open and I am hopeful for the future, whether it be with or without him.

#143 Kelsey on 08.28.13 at 3:24 am

I’ve been going forum to forum, been googling and reading all about my Narcissisic mother and finally my whole life makes sense. I told her I wanted no contact. I have since then become so confused about my life, my self, questioning my reality, my feelings, thoughts, perception. I feel so lost and broken and have no idea where to I from here. The truth is out but how do I carry on? Nobody in my life understands and I left with the silent grief of my mother and my entire failure of a life. I can’t concentrate or think about anything but this; trying to find answers, understanding, solutions. I wonder if its too late to heal. I want to run away and don’t know where to go or which direction to take, but at the same time am so exhausted I’m finding it hard to make any sort of a plan. I want justice, I want recognition, I want to hide, I want to run, I want to cry, I want to sleep…..where do I go from here? Is there a light at the end of my tunnel?

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#146 Al-Maria on 09.09.13 at 3:22 am

I am 61 now. I was the youngest of 3 and of course the only girl. My father left us before I was 1 and although ne was a narrsasit he left us with the worst narrsasite. She never once touched me only took all she could from me to mother her. She hated me infront of everyone and everyhting was my fault. I married a narrsiste and he abused me and our 4 daughters for 22 years .He still treats the girls the same but they have learned to recieve rather thean understand. I have deep depression and severe generlized anxiety. I feel so bad I want to dye. I pray and pray but God does not tkae this from me even though I have fiqured it out. Thnaks for your bloga.God Bless you all .

#147 Al-Maria on 09.09.13 at 6:06 am

I’m 61 now and was the last of three and only girl. My narrciste father left when I was about one and never looked back. No relatioship with him. He left us with a severe narssacit and nut. She never once held me and would not let anyone else comfort me. My four daughters I raised but they treat me like a chid and do not recpect me. I have severe anxiety pstd and depression. Thanks Al.

#148 Jani p on 09.09.13 at 6:37 am

My husbands mother is a narcissist. I did not even know what a narcissist was, until I bean to become involved with his family. During the time of getting to know them, and during a 3 month stay she had with us after we were married, I began to research personality disorders, as it was very apparent to me that something was very wrong with his family. To make a long story short, I was convinced that she was a narcissist mother, and he was the scape goat, and his sister was the golden child. It became so bad that we have since removed communication from his mother and sister. They were horrible to him. The scariest part of it all, was how blind he was to the things they were doing. As an outsider, I could see things he couldn’t. Finally after years of drama, he did begin to see what they were doing to him. He is convinced though, that this way they acted was just as of recent. I on the other hand, believe that they were always like this to him, he just wasn’t able to detect the treatment he was receiving. He was finally able to see it while married to me, not because it was new, but because it became so extreme ( with me calling it out and extreme fights that came out of it) … And before me, I truly believe the same abuse was there, but he was indeed brainwashed, or was so accustomed to the treatment, that he just didnt know. …. Now, the reason I am commenting here, is because I am looking for help,… I have found many articles on narcissism, not many on the aftermath it leaves on the victim as they are an adult. I found tis article, which was great, and I thank you for this… Here is where I am am right now with my husband….. Our relationship is not well. We cannot hold the most day to day conversations. If I say “babe have you seen my keys?” He reaches with “oh so I am responsible for your keys, and its my fault they are missing?” …just one out off 200 examples. He says that everything I say to him has an underlying tone to it, and that tone is because I am blaming or criticizing him, and so he will protect himself. It’s became so bad I just don’t talk to him at all. Even the most common sentence, triggers to him that I am attacking him or trying to trick him, or get one over on him. I feel like he is putting me in the place his mom and sister held, and he doesn’t see this and surely will not accept this when we have talked about. It’s breaking me down. It’s making our marriage stale and so sensitive I am afraid to talk. I don’t know what to do. If anyone could direct me to articles or have any insight into deeper analysis of these victims as they are adults, and their current relationships, and how to help them, it would be deeply appreciated.

#149 Jeni Mawter on 09.10.13 at 4:10 pm

Hi Al-Maria,

The overwhelming theme when people comment or write to me is that they are hurting and despairing and don’t know what to do.

I am in the process of researching and putting together some suggestions to help victims of NPD move on. I will post as soon as I am able, so watch out for this.

Hugs to you and don’t give up on your future!

Jeni

#150 Jeni Mawter on 09.10.13 at 4:19 pm

Hi Jani,

How hard this must be on you and your husband and your marriage! And how frustrating that now, having found an explanation for the NPD abusive situation, you can’t change things for you both.

I guess that’s the key. Your husband needs to understand what’s going on and he’s going to want to change.

How to do this? Reader suggestions would be appreciated.

Jeni

#151 Dave on 09.10.13 at 11:54 pm

Hi Jeni,

I’m so happy to see this forum!

I think my ex was a narcissist, and some research suggests this. However I would like to know what you think about these ‘notes’ I made whilst I try desperately to get over her. The ‘notes’ were a list of her bad points to help make me feel better about the split:
- never complemented me about my appearance
- Never said she loved me (as the instigator), and only ever said it in response to me telling her that I loved her
- I have chronic back pain and she never asked me how I was feeling or if I needed a rub
- Never saying that she appreciates me for all the money I’ve given her and gifts bought, etc
- Showed me no affection
- When we went out she very rarely offered to buy a coffee (over 4 years)
- Never had a birthday card
- Would never phone and say “Hi, how are you?”
- Even though she lived 10 mins walk away, she would never walk around to my house to say hello
- Sexually I would always arouse her to orgasm, and then she would lose interest, turn over and leave me frustrated
- I always brought her a coffee in the morning as she woke up, she never offered to bring me one for a change
- She knows I love walking but would never join me, not even for a short circular walk
- Tell me if a meal I’d lovingly prepared wasn’t too her liking
- Never bought me a surprise gift or flowers, even though she would constantly get such little love reminders
- I would pay for everything when we went for a meal or shopping, my own fault for offering but why wouldn’t she say “Let me pay for a change?”

That list isn’t exhaustive, just things I could think of as I looked back over our (often rocky) relationship. I hope it gives you a good idea.

And one final thing.

Whilst we were on a “break” (her words), she met someone who was interested in the research she is doing regarding conspiracy theories. She told him that to undertake further research it would cost circa £500 (this is actually true). When he offered to pay, the friendship developed into a relationship (she had been in this relationship for a couple of months, but when I saw her last week and tried to woo her again with flowers and champagne, she said she wasn’t looking for a relationship with anyone). Maybe this to pacify me?
Anyhow, my thoughts were that she was attracted to this guy because of the gift of money and she felt duty-bound to offer him sex and a relationship as way of thanks. Could she (as a narcissist) be so self-serving?

Oh, and she often told me that she’d been in a relationship with a narcissist in the past, and even accused me of being one. When all she has ever got from me is unconditional love, support and my heart and soul. I called her my true-love and Goddess. And that is why I’m hurting so much. And even though if what I’ve read about narcissists is true, why do I feel lost and empty without her at my side?

Thank you and very best wishes
Dave

I feel a bit guilty for writing so much, but do so welcome this opportunity to get an outside opinion.

#152 Dave on 09.11.13 at 12:29 am

Jeni,

What I forgot to mention that is germane to our relationship ending is that when I saw her last week and she told me she wasn’t interested in a relationship with anyone, just wanting to meet new friends (even though she’d been in a relationship with this new guy for two or three months).
I never slept for two days and hardly ate, just the thought of her being with someone else drove me almost crazy (and still does, actually), so, thinking I might still be in with a chance to renew our relationship after the ‘break’ I wrote a very long email, basically pouring my heart out by admitting responsibility to the problems that had caused us to split more times than I care to remember. She replied 3 days later, by way of a brief note saying that I’d said some lovely things, that she didn’t want to write long emails (even though she’s a touch-typist) and basically thanking me for sending the email.
I had to ring, it was too non-comittal and din’t say anything about how she felt. She arranged to meet for a coffee a couple of days later, where she confirmed that she had met someone else. No “Sorry Dave for all the good times, but I think the time is right to move on…” Nothing by way of remorse, just carried on drinking the coffee and what was interesting was that she made a point of wanting to remain good friends. I agreed and told her that she had my unconditional love, support and friendship and that I’m happy for her. It was almost like I was giving her permission to continue in the relationship by wishing her well, which I regretted.

Right now, I’d take her back in a heartbeat. My heart is ruling my head, I think……

Thank you again

#153 Dave on 09.11.13 at 12:33 am

(this to follow the “No “Sorry Dave for all the good times…) above – I missed the following out:

She just said that she was “Seeing someone else” no explanations, no nothing…….

#154 Dave on 09.11.13 at 12:42 am

Please forgive me – I keep thinking of things to add….

When I found out her new guy had a lot of money (I haven’t), drove a car (I can’t even drive) and wasn’t afraid of flying (I am), I became mired in grief that she would never want me back again as he could offer her more.

#155 Jeni Mawter on 09.14.13 at 1:11 pm

Hi Dave,

I read your comments and as I go I tick each point off on a long list of NPD traits. Your relationship seems to be classic. Even the projection that you are a Narcissist is classic.

Here is a link to an interesting article about why victims of NPD abuse find it so hard to move on: http://www.healthyplace.com/personality-disorders/malignant-self-love/mourning-the-narcissist/

I know recovery from Narcissistic Abuse is a challenge for most, and often takes a very long time – years, not months or weeks – so I wish you every success at making sense of your world and finding a place of peace.

Warm regards,

Jeni

#156 Jane Levine on 09.20.13 at 5:42 pm

Hi Jeni :)

Just asking if I could receive your blog via the e-mail address given. The one proposed when I tried to subscribe just now is a google mail address that I never look at. Hope that using the address I’ve just given will be okay. Really enjoyed reading your lastest post. Best. Jane x

#157 Angela on 09.21.13 at 7:27 pm

This is one of the most well written pieces about NPD that I have read ( and I have read quite a few!) Thank you….I need to read this stuff to remind me of what I have been put through.

#158 IAMOK on 09.27.13 at 3:49 am

I live with a wife that has NPD I feel..Her mom was really weird. Having studied NPD for years now I think I have a better hand on it than most professionals. Having to survive it either makes you stronger or destroys you..
There also is a sneaky side to it where you think you are handling the N and the tentacles still get you because it is so insidious. You may forget what normal healthy is and that sucks.. When I think NPD I think control and severe low self worth. Sometimes the lack of maturity is appalling. Like she won’t grow because that would signify she was faulty and can’t go there at all..In no way can we ever talk because its like light and darkness. She won’t come in to the light. She is very mean to myself and the kids and thinks its ok to behave that way. Its everyone elses fault why she acts the way she does. To talk with her is very confusing she doesn’t think rationally.add PMS and MP and OMG. Rage, depression,alcohol,lazy,blame,overweight/cortisol. I could go on and on. Anyone who has to deal with this I would like to give you some pointers..If you are not strong get out…If you are going to hang in there know what healthy behavior is/study study. Never let them get you angry. Understand the source and deal with it. Let them know you don’t agree with their thinking.
In some cases watch out for the family/money etc..
To N’s money can be a drug. Be strong for the kid’s.
Never content, never happy, always complaining, never enough, and its all your fault…
Praise the Lord..

#159 Bri on 09.28.13 at 12:43 pm

I have an extremely narcissistic mother and I feel it is affecting me as an adult and mother myself. When i hit puberty i was not allowed to shave my legs, like until i was 14 and i was sneaking razors from her shower. She would read my diary and still brings up embarrassing things she read, especially in public or in front of people who don’t need to hear it. She never came to any of my high school events because she was “busy” but if she ever came she would make sure EVERYONE knew she was there. Even now she claims that she was asuper PTA mom and brags about all my accomplishments amd loves when people say how great i am because it reflects in her. I had to be home from school exactly 15 minutes after it ended (nearly impossible) or I risked punishment. as achool ended i had to answer her phone call, and if i didnt answer it fast enough i was in trouble. i was not allowed to stay at friends houses. I was not allowed to go with friends. I had to be home early from my proms (retaliation because i didnt want her to chaperon). when graduation came i had many choices of colleges but ultimately i HAD to choose one an hour away, so she could “drop in” and so i could come home every weekend. she said not to complain because she was “letting me” go to college. I ended up transferring colleges and getting married to my long term boyfriend so I could “escape”. We have an amazing marriage that she meddles in. Marriage advice, telling us how to pay bills and scolding us for going out on date nights. God forbid we mention going away for a weekend because she will get mad that we dont invite her and if we dont, she tells us how irresponsible we are for blowing money and we need to stay home. she had to know every detail about when we bought our car, down to the monthly payment and interest rate. She comes by my house every day to see my children even if I ask her please come by another day. She calls 10+ times a day mainly just to see what I am doing or where I am at, if i dont answer i get a message that says “urgent” or “call me asap”. if I say I am going to the store she will ask why and then tell me how to spend my money. If I tell her anything about future plans she belittles me. I told her I wanted to go back to school (something she was never able to do) and she told me I was “selfish” and I needed to “put my kids first”. She is always telling us how to raise our kids, how she did it was best of course. She tells me what i “need to do” around my own house. If I say anything like “thanks for the advice but we are doing this or that instead” she will then blow up, say I am a horrible person. I can have no opinion about myself, my husband, my children, my life. I am smothered and I’m losing it. She lives 5 minutes away so I can’t go No Contact. I set boundaries and she breaks them. If I do voice my opinion she says “im stressing her out so bad her heart can’t handle the stress” she is always and has always used sickness as a ploy to manipulate us. I can’t breathe around her. This has to stop.

#160 joanna on 10.02.13 at 3:15 am

I’m grateful to find this post as I attempt to make sense of life again.

I’m in the aftermath of ending a four year relationship with a narcissist and find myself angry, depressed, sleepless, feeling worthless, intermittently suicidal, berating myself for hurting him, regretful that I declined his marriage proposal, bitter about the emotional and sexual abuse I endured and generally struggling to feel anything close to “normal” or myself.

I find myself ruminating about how he is probably drawing supply right now from others, sharing how he was wounded by me, his selfish, evil, rude and hurtful (or so he called me in his voice and text messages) ex girlfriend. He is extremely handsome, handsome and popular. When we were together, he was always quick to remind me how he loved me when “no one else would”. Boy, did I think I’d hit the jackpot when we started dating.

I was extremely isolated throughout this relationship due to the high demands placed upon me and the interrogation that followed any outing at all, even going somewhere by myself. I have no friends to speak of anymore and don’t have the resources to pay for professional support, so I am forced to “wing it” for now.

Since I have a history of borderline personality disorder and thus an unstable sense of identity to begin with, reframing my self and my life without my ex telling me what’s “right” and “real” is extraordinarily painful – especially since this relationship reenacted in many ways the trauma I experienced at the hands of my narcissist father.

Blessings to you for disseminating this information and for your kind compassion to all who have posted here. Blessings to all who are working to become well. We are all worthy of being well and happy and hopefully, one day in the near future, we will be. It’s a painful road we walk but hopefully not a long one.

#161 Jeni Mawter on 10.02.13 at 1:55 pm

Hi Joanna,

Sending you a hug and the best of wishes for finding your way through this and out the other side.

I know how tough this must be after a life-time of abuse, but I also believe we can move through this. Not absolutely sure how, but I’m researching it at the moment and hope to put out another Slideshare soon on Surviving and Thriving after Narcissistic abuse.

Warm wishes to you and all who read this blog,

Jeni

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#164 Tim Dennehy on 10.09.13 at 1:45 pm

it was my dad all along,and he is still blaming ,my mother,and everyone else,and he is the fuck up.i am 32 now,and am only ignoring him now,my life has been wasted,listening to him,oh that’s not good enough,there is nothing in that.thank christ for my sister.being lesbian,just to piss him off.

#165 Julia on 10.17.13 at 11:42 am

I am caught in this at the moment. My husband has NPD and I have suffered for over 25 years. I am now at a terrible point in my life after having realized what he is and where I am at. Reality hurts. I have been plummeted into a very dark depression as I am now being forced to face the truth about him and myself. He has so effectively eroded my sense of self over the years and the codependency is so strong that I feel completely paralyzed by fear and trapped. I know that this relationship is clearly destructive and detrimental to me as a person and yet I cannot muster up the strength and courage to leave – hence feeling trapped. It is such a complex and convoluted situation that only those with experience in this could fully appreciate. I am seeing a psychologist and although this is beneficial it is also unearthing so many emotions that have been hidden deep inside myself and it is very painful. Also I don’t believe that my therapist fully gets the complexity of the abuse of a narcissist and narcissist victim syndrome. Instead of looking at the whole picture, which includes all the different facets of the abuse, they tend to look at each individual symptom and try and treat that on its own. For example: I am depressed, lets treat the depression. What about the rest??? What about the feelings of worthlessness, lack of self esteem, shattered confidence, trauma, anxiety, etc, etc. It makes it very hard for individuals like myself to get the right treatment and support. Meanwhile I struggle alone and gain comfort from reading posts like yours and the stories and comments of others like me. Thanks.

#166 Ian on 10.24.13 at 7:59 am

my ex used to say, “i don’t like your mom.”

when i would fight back, and say, “why the hell would you say that” she would turn around and say, “Why are you getting angry with me. It’s not my fault you had a bad day at work.”

i think i’ve completely lost my mind.

Her own parents take her abuse, and used to say things like “Oh, i would never get on ‘her’ bad side.” Then, after years of me having to deal with her behavior that her parents avoided dealing with, i became the bad guy. Everything was my fault. Her parents told me I wasn’t being nice to their daughter.

Is this normal NPD behavior I was dealing with?

#167 Jeni Mawter on 10.24.13 at 10:56 am

Ian, I’d never use the word normal with NPD in the same sentence :)

It does sound like you’re embroiled in a family with NPD issues. You seem to have the whole package – the NPD(s), the enabler(s), the Special Child’, and the victim (you).

I wish you every success negotiating your way through this and that you find a place of peace.

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#169 Ian on 10.26.13 at 6:46 am

Thank you Jeni.

#170 Kat and Jay on 10.31.13 at 1:38 pm

My son and I have read your blog, and we were stunned by the familiar scenarios and symptoms of a victim. And we have both came to the conclusion that we are both the victims and the Narcissist. How weird is that. Wow is all that we can say. Thanks for informing.

#171 cleigh on 11.11.13 at 4:58 pm

This is a very well-written and informative post. I sometimes feel like there is no greater anguish than the suffering that comes from narcissistic emotional abuse. My family pushed my sanity to the brink but I won’t let it break me. If nothing more I am grateful that I can finally see the light. I wish more people know about this kind of thing.

#172 Jeni Mawter on 11.11.13 at 8:33 pm

Thanks for sharing Cleigh!

#173 marina on 11.15.13 at 11:02 am

He brought back my ex,

my name is marina from america,i had a problem with my husband sometimes ago but never knew what the problem was,i tried to asked him but he refused to tell me what it was as time goes on i discovered he was having an affair with a friend of mine that happens to be my best friend,i was so sad that i never knew what to do next,during my search for a way out i met a friend of mine who had similar problem and introduced me to a man who helped him with his situation,on getting to the man i discovered he was a spell caster i was shocked because i have not had anything to do with a spell caster in my entire life so i tried to give this man a chance cos i never believed in spell casting as i thought it will not work for me but to my surprise i got
positive results and i was able to get my husband back from her even after the spell caster did all i discovered my husband fell much more in love with me on like before so i was so happy that i never know what to do for him so i am using this opportunity to tell anyone having similar problem contact obatalasango@gmail.com…..He will surely solve your problems temple of solution…..

#174 Diva on 11.18.13 at 9:19 am

Does a narcissist realize what they are doing? Why are others blinded by their behavior when in many instances its obvious that something is not right about their behavior?

#175 Brandi on 11.20.13 at 10:02 am

Was just wondering if there was a reason my entry was deleted?

#176 Sue on 11.24.13 at 8:29 am

Hi Jen
This is a great and informative post,it has given me some clarity that I am one of many and not alone and crazy as I have been lead to believe.
I live in nz and wondered if you were aware of any services similar to the heart center that can give my guidance and support for my recovery from my Narcassist

#177 ina on 11.26.13 at 1:03 pm

This site is an eye-opening one. So many vicims, so many lives hurt especially the children in these abusive relationships but not many help to turn to. I have been doing extensive research because I gave up trying to fix my marriage of almost four decades, simply because of my Christian belief that marriage is till death do us part and not knowing that there is such narcissistic personality. All my life I only asked for one thing, a happy marriage and happy children. To that idea, I kept myself clean, married a virgin and prayed so hard for a “kind” christian husband. What did I get, a passive aggressive or borderline personality husband who is a mama’s boy to boot. He never stood up for me against his narcissistic mother, never listened, could not communicate, could not say any kind word or appreciation for me. I even cut my own hair and the rest of the family, make our clothes, work the yard and vege garden, on my own all the time. He never helped or asked what I was doing. Consistently working parttime to help the family’s finance. Cook meals everyday, save money by diy. The horrid MIL died a few months ago and now the passive aggressive son is totally lost and miserable. And getting violent. The last straw (we are living apart, he is overseas) was out of the blue, he accused me of being greedy when the proceeds of a house sale on his specific instruction (he was worried of additional tax) was placed in my name. The account is linked to our joint accounts and he has access, anyway. And when I reminded him it was your instruction, he was about to punch me on the face with a clenched fist. He only stopped when I challenged him to go ahead and I will have him in jail. This is when I said, I had enough. Trying to help this abusive people is a waste of time and energy and interpreted by their screwed up mind as “control”. They don’t take personal responsibility, blame every one else for their “chaos” producing childish behaviors. I do not accept that I “enabled” him as stated by some psychologists. I was working hard to make the marriage work, bending backwards for so long. I am not afraid of him but I feel unsafe with him now. Am I a co-dependent? Everybody in a relationship is a co-dependent. There is nothing wrong with that. The problem is the abuse perpetrated by the abusive partner. Sometimes the victims are punished a second time by being labelled as “enabler”.

#178 Ebeta Anya Jagelo on 11.27.13 at 6:18 am

Hello, I Mother of a NPD daughter who is in her 40′s. I have suffered alone for many years. She has convinced my fanily and friends that I am crazy and need to be commited. Se has gone as far as sending police to check me out, she is threatning me right now with this. Finally she is getting some help but now the Dr is telling her that I caused her to be sick. I can’t win and I want to die but can’t because it would scar her for life. I can’t afford to get help…..

#179 Susan on 12.02.13 at 9:53 am

Thank you so much for this site as it has helped me to feel not so alone in my confusion and agony. I am 3 months out (for the second time) of a relationship with a man whom I think has NPD, he is an alcoholic, porn addict, compulsive liar, verbally and emotionally abusive and an emotional cheat. He was ever so charming when we first met, even after he was an hour late for our first date I excused him (I should have left after he was 15 mins late) I have read that always being late is a form of control . He left me the first time to go back to his ex because he owed her money but then he left her to come back to me, I have heard that he has tried to contact his ex since leaving me but she won’t have contact with him. His abuse was so subtle in the beginning, his nic name for me was ‘the idiot’ but he always followed with ‘but your my little idiot’ and would laugh which, although it bothered me, I was supposed to take it as funny as well and he would tell me that I had lost my sense of humour, I didn’t find it funny, especially when in public or with my friends (the very few I still had) he would call out ‘hey idiot’ or call me a F’ing idiot if I had an opinion which differed to his. He would often burst into irrational rages and rants after 10 hours of drinking (which was every day, when he was working he would drink for a few hours before he went on night shift and then drink OP rum on his way to work) he often would accuse me of doing something wrong which I had no idea of what he was talking about, I felt like a child and he made me cry nearly every other day. He is a firefighter with the MFB and owns a farm out of town, he slowly moved all my belongings to the farm as he wanted me to move in with him, I was madly in love with this man and I blamed the stress of his job for the drinking… I always made excuses for his behavior and I thought I could change him, in the end HE changed ME. He was very critical of me but even that was subtle, it was always meant to be a joke, he would even critisize me when we were intimate which was humiliating, he demanded sex before he went to work on night shift and if I ever refused I got the silent treatment or he would remind me that he worked with some pretty cute young women. He had completely moved all of my belongings to the farm and I had sold the things we would have two of and a week later he went into a drunken rage over a roast dinner, told me it was over and kicked me out. Luckily I had not yet sold my home and I had somewhere to go but I had the expense of removal trucks etc. I am having an extremely difficult time trying to get my head around what had happened that night but I know deep down that I cannot be all to blame, he is back on rsvp which really hurts, he will find another victim I know as he is so charming. He was my first true love (at first sight) and as they say… the first cut is the deepest!

#180 Susan on 12.02.13 at 10:28 am

I would like to add, my brother said to me after the second separation, ‘giving someone a second chance is like giving them another bullet for their gun as they missed you the first time’ thanks bro x

#181 Susan on 12.02.13 at 11:38 am

Apologies, I too (like Dave :) keep thinking of things to write, I guess this is like therapy for me as I have no one to talk to as I have locked myself away for the past three months and, I don’t like to bother anyone with my problems.
My ex partner refused to acknowledge my Birthdays, it was not that he would forget, he told me straight out that he will never acknowledge my Birthday which made me feel unimportant and worthless to him for him to do so, even when I would make a fuss of HIM on his birthday. He owed his ex a great deal of money and instead of paying her he bought a $20,000.00 boat from America, even when he was in drought and his cows were starving and lice ridden, he spent the cash he had on the boat, he has never used the boat but loves to put it behind his car and take it to work to show off to the boys. The farm house we lived in was a broken down wreck that he had been renovating for 15yrs, the two external doors were broken and could not be closed, the kitchen roof leaked in bucket fulls when it rained, the oven hadn’t worked for 2 yrs but he always expected bread baked (in a portable convection oven I had to buy) and gourmet meals to be on the table when he was ready to eat, which was usually 10 or 11pm at night when he had finished drinking, there were broken windows which were patched up with cardboard, no floor coverings in most rooms, some of the internal walls did not have plaster, roofing was missing, electric wires hung out of external walls so, when it did rain, the power always went out and we did not have water to the house as we were on tank water, I was usually home alone and if I ever commented on how difficult it was living like this he would tell me to leave. He had the bathroom lined in marble and installed a 17 jet spa even though it was a drought and on tank water he could not see that the money would have been better spent on feed for the cattle. I walked on eggshells most of the time as what ever I said was either wrong or I was a stupid female or an idiot. My mother died earlier this year after a 15yr illness and he picked a fight with me and dumped me 2 days before she died, he called the day before the funeral and asked if I wanted him at the funeral, I said no and asked him if he realized how devastating it was for me to lose my mother and my partner at the same time and his reply was ‘she is not my Mother so why should I care’… but I took him back, I feel so stupid now that I did. He bought me my own herd of 10, 4 day old calves to rear and gave me an abandoned calf of his which was one day old, I raised the calves as my babies, especially the day old calf and she became a pet, I have offered to buy them from him but he will not answer my requests, I cry mostly for my cows as I know how cruel he is to his cattle, the thought of my baby being beaten (and frightened), as he does to his cows, makes me so very very sad.

#182 Susan on 12.03.13 at 8:35 am

Good Morning (and it is good)
I wish to sincerely thank everyone who has shared their stories on this blog as it has helped me immensely, helped me to see that I am not alone in my agony, that I was not going crazy, that I am not a worthless, stupid human being nor an idiot! I only discovered this site and learned of NPD a few days ago and for the first time in many many years I did not consume a whole bottle of wine last night to numb my pain to get me to sleep, I drank peppermint tea whilst reading more (sad) blogs from NPD survivors (I prefer to say that I am a survivor rather than a victim) and I slept soundly to awake this morning to see the sun shining brightly, to hear all the gorgeous birds singing to greet the sun and, I feel as if my dark cloud is lifting to reveal a wonderful, exciting, peaceful life ahead of me without criticism, without degradation, without humiliation and without the feeling of being worthless, I still have a long way to go but I feel that today is the first day of the rest of my life (I know, I know, an old cliche but a goody) so, a HUGE thank-you for sharing your stories. Love and peace to you all xx

#183 Jackie on 12.04.13 at 5:28 pm

I am a product of two NPD’s, my dad may be co-dependent, but he shows signs of the disorder. I am 35 a single mother to two children from two different dads. I can’t keep a job and am constantly having to move back in with my parents. I am hated by my siblings (one sister is also an NPD) and other family members. I was diagnosed bipolar a few years ago, but came to realize within this last year what is really happening to me. Sadly, my personality is horrible and I have already lost my relationship with my 16 year old son who lives with his dad. I currently am in the process of again moving in with my parents because I have nowhere else to go and I am devastated. I don’t have any money for therapy, I have been searching for a job for the last 6 months to no avail. I’m at the end of my rope! I have a 7 year old daughter who I need to be here for, but I’m not sure how much longer I can go on. I don’t know what I’m asking, but no one I know (which is very few people) will listen to me. All I hear is that it’s all my fault and that I’m sick. I’m scared to death my daughter will grow up like me because she is also involved with my parents. I have absolutely no self-worth and I can’t get better if I’m constantly under their control living with them or not. What can I do? I feel like this is so out of control and so far gone, that I will forever be in this horror.

#184 Connie on 12.06.13 at 1:14 am

I was married to a narrcisist/sociopath for almost 10 years. He systematically dismantled my life and left me with nothing. Nothing materially and nothing spiritually. That was 6 years ago.
I am a life long codependent, whose mother was an extreme narcissist. She had 13 children, and although I never knew it till recently, she had all those kids so she would have endless supplies of adoration from them. Having so many children also brought my mother great sympathy from the outside world. It enabled her to live her life as a martyr. No doubt my mother had so many children because somehow she knew that not all of them would be capable of her “conditional love” demands. Unfortunately for me, I was one of those children.
Keeping in mind, although I have sought therapy many times in my life, at 53 I’m only now starting to understand why my life has been such a dismal failure. In the 6 years since my husband left me, I spent 5 years living with my grown daughter and her husband and helped them with the children while they both worked full time. About a year ago got my own apartment and now live alone.
Like I said earlier, although I had many bad relationships throughout my life, my marriage was the “last straw” for me emotionally. I have very little contact with people (my grandsons once a week), I have no desire to ever have another relationship of any kind. When I met my husband I was a professional woman who owned her own home; I now live in a cheap apartment, I’m on full disability due to my inability to work (I tried after my divorce and was fired from several jobs), and I can barely make ends meet. I have absolutely no hope for the future.
I’m in therapy, actually have an appt today. I’m getting EMDR treatment. I am motivated to seek help, only because I want the dreaded cycle of family dysfunction and child abuse to stop. I don’t really do it for me, I do it for my grandsons. I have severe doubts that I will ever “be cured”….thanks for listening.

#185 Vannessa on 12.10.13 at 6:31 am

I am still suffering the effects of having been in a relationship with a very sadistic Narcissist. As I look back, it would seem as though the more I tried to love him, the more he hated me. I can now identify what looks to be a fairly consistent stream of abuse that, at the time I forgave as individual mistakes. The most painful experience was watching him convince his family and friends that I was crazy, when in fact, he was absolutely insane. He used other women to hurt me, frequently, and blatantly lied and was caught over and over.
The list of abuses is actually embarrassing to me now. I have a hard time believing the kinds of behavior I forgave.

The end came while engaged, I found him on Craig’s List,soliciting sex from men. I made his ex wife aware in an uncharacteristic attempt at retaliation. He ended our relationship with a 6 word text. He initiated the silent treatment after telling me I was responsible for the loss of his parental rights of his 12 year old. I attempted to communicate with him for a few months but he only saved the messages and threatened me with a law suit. I have had brief communications, but he blames me for the loss of his child and considers me this horrible person, even though he was the one that was always cheating.

I can not tell you how painful this was for me at the time. The relationship had been turbulent and had already significantly effected me very badly. I was very depressed, unable to work, unable to cope, and totally confused as to why I was so devastated. The final ending left me in the state of a nervous breakdown, from which it took many months to recover from. I am not certain that I have ever truly fully recovered. I know he has left a long trail of destruction, but I am the only woman he has ever completely cut out of his life. I may be the only one who ever fought back. I don’t know. I guess I am still confused……..

#186 Susan on 12.11.13 at 8:00 am

To Vanessa,
my story is so very similar to your story as I found out that my ex N was also soliciting sex from men, he was a self confessed porn addict (which I chose to accept/ignore) and I discovered that he was obsessed with gay porn and had joined a casual sex site to find men (and women) in our local area to have casual sex with, I told him that he had a legal and moral obligation to tell me if he was having sex with other people and he told me that it was none of my business…. a truly grubby little man!

It really makes me angry that these Narc a**holes keep getting away with what they are doing, which is destroying innocent peoples lives, they devalue and discard and then move on to their next victim, it is all a game for them and we are left to deal with the horrendous grief, confusion and post traumatic stress…. why can’t they be stopped? It should be a criminal offence to treat people in the way they do, I just pray that Karma gets them in the end (sooner rather than later!)

#187 Nichole on 12.12.13 at 1:30 pm

Hey ladies, I want yall to check out my blog, please.

http://tmnms2.blogspot.com/

You stories are similar to mine. My abuser wasn’t a cheater (well, that I know of, who really knows right?) however, he’s still getting everyone around him convinced he’s innocent. He’s gotten himself is some legal trouble when he attacked my father and man, he’s pissed he has to deal with the problems he created for himself. I want yall to read my blog because, Vanessa, you are so strong for surviving that and I think it’b be great reading the material I’ve found, also feel free to post any time or email me!

#188 Stacy on 12.15.13 at 5:12 am

Hi,
I just wanted to thank you for this post. It turns out that I was married to a narcissist. I am only just now realizing the abuse that I have suffered. Luckily, we are separated and headed to divorce, but we have a child together. What effects can this personality type have on their kids. I haven’t noticed anything worrisome so far, but I have been knee-deep in this for almost 10 years.

Thank you!

#189 jan on 12.27.13 at 10:19 am

I have buried two blatant narcissists without a one apology from either for over 60 years. They are a phenomenon par excellence, a breed unto themselves. They take no prisoners, and I think pride themselves in their inaccessability to any moral persons reasoning. Cut your losses and run in the opposite direction as fast as you are able unless you wish to be gaslighted into your closest state institution. I am deadly serious they are not to be taken lightly, ever!

#190 sue on 01.09.14 at 8:29 am

Wish these narcs would all go f themselves. The world would be better without them. They are a WASTE of oxygen. The Lord says “forgive” and I’m really peeved at these predators.

#191 Stuff to look at – December 2013 | Rejoice in the Lord! on 01.13.14 at 12:40 pm

[…] Narcissistic Victim Syndrome. Something that people involved with those whit NPD can develop. […]

#192 rich on 01.15.14 at 1:03 am

Wow! Great page! I married one two years ago. She is spot on a narcissistic nightmare. I’m lucky to be strong headed and will defend fact and dismiss the bs. She almost had me….almost. it was great till we bought a house then it all changed very rapidly. In the beginning she have no hint of it. She had no idea I was as strong as I was. When I was confronted by being blamed for her wrong doings I refused to take blame. They do not like that. I see how easy it is to be fooled. She has fooled friends and family for along time. Not going to happen with me….EVER! Telling me I need help. Ha. She has been married 3 precious times and guess what….all those men were rotten…. ya right. Great page and stand up for yourself it is as simple as knowing what the true facts are and defiantly defending yourself. Cut your losses and leave. I’m out literally 30,000 dollars, I’m broke now and so what! I’m not hanging around regardless. Do not wait 20 years or 20 minutes. When you are blamed for something they did, get the hell out. It will never end. Good luck people!

#193 sarah on 02.11.14 at 2:25 pm

Hi Jeni! Congratulations on this site, it is not only interesting but from what I see it has helped quite a lot of people.

I was wondering if its common for two narcs to end up together? From what I have been reading, not only is my husband a narc, but so am I. He has some of the characteristics of a covert narc and I have others… If one recognizes oneself as a narc, what can we do to stop? Or might I be confusing this with codependency?

Thank you very much!

#194 Jeni Mawter on 04.09.14 at 12:57 pm

Hi Sarah,

Sorry for my delayed reply. I am in process of building a new web site so have been off-line for a few weeks.

They say that anyone who labels themselves as a person with NPD, is not. The label implies insight which an NPD does not have. Co-dependency is another ball-game and may be worth researching and addressing this problem, if indeed it applies to you!

Warm wishes.

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