Narcissists Leave Their Families in Psychological, Emotional and Financial Turmoil

Narcissists live strictly for themselves. They bring individuals into their lives–spouses, ex-spouses, children, siblings, friends, business associates, to play “roles” that build and enhance their grandiose images and masks of their ubiquitous false selves. Narcissists are disingenuous, incapable of being true, real or authentic.

Narcissists create chaos, pain and destruction wherever they go. Those who have grown up as children of a narcissistic mother or father, know this story too well. I hear from so many of these children and the tales are hair-raising. Children are emotionally and psychologically neglected, treated like dirt or in the other extreme–chosen as perfect living replicas of themselves–These are the golden children who are picked from the rest of the pack for their physical beauty or handsomeness, intellectual brightness, athletic potential, social graces–they embellish the narcissist’ self image. On the opposite end are the children who are treated with derision and scorn, those who are beaten verbally or physically, neglected and cast out as “inferior” from the day they were born. They are the outcasts, the prodigals, the wretched ones of the family. The narcissistic parent has no problem inflicting severe levels of pain since he/she doesn’t have a conscience and no capacity for empathy, compassion or guilt.

During the sickening lengthy divorce battles, narcissists are particularly nasty. They fear that they won’t get everything to which they are entitled. They expect to win over the opposing spouse and if this involves devastating the lives of their children and other family members, this is of no consequence to them. They are in a no prisoners mode, nothing is going to stop them; they are heavily lawyered up and hell bent to take everything in reach, even if they are not legally entitled to it. Custody battles are particularly nasty. Narcissists often drag them out over many years to wear the other party down, manipulate the children to their side and attempt to destroy any positive relationship with the other parent. They play games with the children, ensuring them that they are the good parent, can and will provide the kids with whatever they want and need. This puts the children in a severe psychological bind as they are whipsawed between one parent and the other. Eventually, the formal divorce comes to an end but not without enormous emotional and psychological fallout.

If you are the child of a narcissist, married to or divorcing a narcissist or have any relationship with one of these toxic individuals, your greatest assets is the power of knowledge. The more that you understand the narcissistic personality in-depth, stop blaming yourself for all of the damage and destruction he has caused and learn to appreciate your real self deeply, the sooner you will begin to heal and move forward with the life that you have always deserved.

Merciless, Greedy Narcissistic Spouse Cannot Love You

The narcissist is gifted at presenting an attractive, compelling, fascinating, convincing false self. It is very difficult to understand how this person who is so charming, bright and who appears to have fallen for you is incapable of truly loving another individual. The narcissist is “self” centered. Everything revolves around them. (This post refers to female and male narcissists). From the beginning the narcissist was playing a role. In some cases he was the Chosen Child–the Star, the Golden One, the Savior of the Family. In other family constellations the narcissist struggled to fit in with the rest of the family players. In order to win the childhood survival game, he developed a compelling, magnetic false self that drew people to him. He learned how to captivate others, almost like putting them under a spell. Especially if the young narcissist is physically attractive and bright and talented, he or she can develop the skills necessary to manipulate and control others. This begins within the family and moves outward into every region of the budding narcissist’s life.

Narcissists are ravenous for attention, praise, adulation and in many cases wealth and sources of power and influence. Deep down they are unable to form genuine relationships, including the role of a spouse in a marriage. They are so entitled and obsessed with self that others, including their spouses, only count as a source of perpetual veneration and praise. For the narcissistic spouse the husband or wife is a possession, a person to be molded to fit the perfect image that the narcissist has created for this individual.

Some of those married to narcissists spend decades in these highly constricted, abusive roles. They are kept in an emotional and psychological strait jacket. They live in delusion and fear, always checking in with the narcissist to make sure they are following his rules.

Those who are married to narcissists are possessed by them. They are tightly held with “rules” that are written in stone by the narcissistic spouse. There is no authentic love taking place in these pseudo relationships. In some instances the victimized spouse awakens to the knowledge that he or she is married to a serious personality disorder that is not going to change, that her life has been eclipsed, her creativity squelched, her sense of self abbreviated.

It is a profound awakening to know that the man or woman to whom you are married is incapable of loving you, of valuing you as a unique individual who deserves warm emotional and psychological reciprocation. With a narcissist, there is no give and take—They take greedily and mercilessly, leaving you in a weakened exhausted state.

Don’t wait for the endgame with the narcissist. Recognize this person for who he is—a severe personality disorder that is fixed like steel–impenetrable.

Turn to yourself–recognize and appreciate fully how genuine you are, how gifted and bright you are, the beauty of your warm open heart, your deep capacity for real love. Put your feet, head, heart and soul on your unique life healing, restorative pathway.

Narcissistic In-Laws Attempt to Destroy Your Marriage

I have heard many life stories about the chaos and emotional and psychological destructiveness of narcissistic in-laws.  This includes the mother-in-law narcissist, the father-in-law narcissist or the narcissistic couple.

When we get married it can be very difficult to know if our prospective in-laws are narcissists. Yes, they may be self-absorbed or entitled or too entranced with the golden child you married. In the beginning everyone was playing the “good behavior” role. Some spouses get a glimpse of coming psychological attractions before the vows are spoken. Most of us are too distracted with the wedding plans and thinking of the meaning of the upcoming marriage and let these warnings pass through our consciousness.

The cracking of the familial perfect face begins with one of the narcissistic parents demanding tremendous amounts of time and attention from the “beloved son or daughter” and giving you the cold shoulder or the silent treatment or outright cold unwarranted criticism. Eventually this leads to scenarios of my way or the highway. This becomes particularly ugly and the couple starts to argue frequently. The golden boy or golden girl narcissist often responds to the family demands since he or she has been the King or Queen of this feudal kingdom since birth.

The spouse who is out in the cold is further criticized and ostracized by the narcissistic in-law(s). Finally a reckoning comes and a decision often must be made–whether to stay in a marriage where you are being constantly abused and mistreated or to move forward and sever the marital relationship.

Meanwhile the narcissistic relatives are relishing your marriage unraveling, knowing they will get their perfect son or daughter to come back to them alone–where he or she belongs. Narcissistic in-laws think of their children as possessions who belong to them and no one else, including a spouse.

Quite often these circumstances do not have a happy ending for the newly married couple. It is better to cut your losses in most cases if you know that your spouse is more wedded to narcissistic mom or dad than to you. You will never win against this deep level of psychopathology.

After you have made your decision to end the marriage and get a divorce, you begin to heal from the relationship you thought you had with this person you had picked to share your life. Pay close attention to your intuition as you go forward. Remember, you come first. This is essential.

Narcissistic Spouse’s Cycle of Abuse

For the narcissist everyone is ultimately disposable and expendable. Since the narcissist is incapable of emotional and psychological intimacy, he/she forms “relationships” based on the ultimate need for narcissistic supplies–adulation, praise, power over others, acquisition, veneration, validation of greatness.  (This post refers to male and female narcissists).

Each narcissist has his own unique style. Some are boorish, others low key appearing to be humble. The grandiose classic narcissist is highly extroverted, seizes the spotlight at every turn, exceedingly confident, continually singing his own praises at maximum volume.

All narcissists are abusive. They are self absorbed, not tuned into the needs of others, lack empathy and project their volcanic rage– especially on to their family members: spouses, ex-spouses, children, siblings, etc.

There is a cycle of abuse that many narcissistic spouses engage in: Charm, Seduction, Manipulation/Exploitation, Disposal.

“Charm is an energy, a vibration, a contagious optimistic state of mind. Charm beguiles; it can seduce us to do almost anything…It is a magic elixir that sets us soaring.” (From: Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life)  It is very difficult to say “No” to the magnetism of the narcissist.  They are captivating. You feel spellbound, enchanted, taken up with them.  In this first phase you are inclined to believe the narcissist and to feel that you are an integral part of his life, that this person cares deeply about you, loves you.

Narcissists are masters of seduction. They know exactly how to get under the skin, the nerves, the heart of a individual whom they have chosen.  They cleverly play on our deepest needs to be wanted, worthy, important, special.  We become entranced with them.

Narcissists are highly manipulative and exploitive. They are exceedingly cunning and know how to play complex cruel, calculated games with your deepest feelings. They use both charm and intimidation to get you to do and be what they want. You must be perfect like they are. They make sure you never measure up to their “standards.” When you don’t make the grade you are severely criticized. This emerges into a pattern of continually putting you down. This is done to weaken and control you and force you to doubt your perceptions. Another ploy is the emotional/psychological push/pull game. After a major blowup the narcissist claims he is sorry and says he needs you desperately.  He wants you back into his life, not because he loves you but due to his need for narcissist supplies to be adored, obeyed and praised constantly. When this sequence is over, he finds a reason to get angry and throw you out of his life. Many victims of narcissistic abuse repeat this pattern over and over again, thinking that the problems arising from the relationship are their fault.

“Dismissal (disposal) arrives as surely as thunder follows lightening…By this time you are not even an imprint on his mind. He has moved on to his next glorious quest…Like a speck of swirling dust, the memory of you as a unique individual and the positive magnitude of your good deeds dissolve into the atmosphere as if they never existed.” (From: Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life). You no longer fit into the narcissist’s grandiose sense of himself.  You have not sufficiently fulfilled the overwhelming needs that this person has for you to be perfect, obedient, ever-loving (regardless of his dark cruelties) and available 24/7.

Stop this cycle of narcissistic abuse by leaving the narcissist with your plan to regain your sense of a strong authentic self. Study the narcissistic personality in-depth. Understand these fixed personality traits that are uninclined to change.

Along with this learning, acknowledge and feel deeply the wonderful unique lovely individual that you are. Walk forward. Rest. Restore. Recover. Renew.

Come home to yourself!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Narcissists Lack a Real Conscience

Are you concerned at times that you have hurt someone’s feelings due to your harsh words or actions? Do you have worries that you misspoke out of anger and your own projections? Do you apologize when you have caused someone  distress?  These are  a few of the questions that those who have a conscience exam within themselves. Individuals with conscience care about the emotional and psychological welfare of other people. They monitor themselves and make every effort to do and say what is right and fair.  (This post refers to female and male narcissists).

Conscience is developed, not innate. By the time a child is three a primitive conscience begins to emerge through the quality of parenting. By the age of seven or eight, the conscience becomes more mature. Conscience grows as a result of parental input that provides the growing child with a sense of caring about the feelings of others. The good parent sets limits on a child’s impulses and wishes in a healthy way. Conscience  develops and becomes more refined throughout life (or doesn’t).

Conscience, the capacity to distinguish what is right and wrong and to experience guilt when we have done harm to another is absent in the narcissist. These individuals do everything in their power not to get caught in their deceptive, unethical and illegals deeds.  For them, this is “conscience.”

The narcissist is ruthlessly goal oriented to the extent that he or she is always in the fast lane to achieve his goals regardless of the harm and distress that it causes others. If lying is the best way to win–that’s fine.  The narcissist rationalizes his lies or doesn’t even acknowledge them.

Lack of conscience makes the narcissist’s movement to the finish line first much easier. He doesn’t have to be concerned about the devastating effects of his misdeeds upon others, especially spouses, ex-spouses, siblings, children, co-workers, business partners and everyone who crosses his path.

How often have you seen reckless drivers on the freeway, threading in and out of heavy traffic at high speeds.  These individuals are endangering everyone else on the road but that doesn’t matter to them.  This is a visual metaphor for the narcissist who moves through the fast lane of his life goals without conscience, empathy, compassion or guilt. These individuals sleep at night without a quiver of guilt.

Our current society is exceedingly narcissistic. Being ruthless without conscience is highly accepted in many sectors of this current narcissistic climate.  Winning, “succeeding” at any cost–have become life goals. There is nothing the matter with success.  We work diligently with our gifts to do better and use our efforts to perform professionally and personally on a high level. But we do this with conscience.

Along with the narcissist’s lack of conscience comes deception, duplicitousness, manipulations and exploitation.  As the narcissist races through life, he is regressing and becoming more deeply entrenched in these pathological personality traits and actions.

Learn to recognize the narcissist quickly so that you will protect yourself from these individuals. Being informed is very powerful. You will know what to expect–nothing!

Remember,  you have a conscience—the narcissist doesn’t and will not develop one.  This is a fixed personality constellation that is not inclined to change.

You are evolving all of the time. This process is not a straight forward line. There are plateaus, trials, disappointments, losses, fears and regrets that we face. This is the life process. Give yourself tremendous credit for being a person of conscience and compassion.  You are that unique individual that always strives to do the right thing especially when no one is watching or will ever find out.  It is in the deep inner self that you feel the peace of your authenticity and integrity.

Narcissist–Master of Deceit

“The narcissist is at all times a deceiver, never straight, clear, or true …He has mastered the ability to delude himself and others. Like a sorcerer, he hatches intricate plots in secret.” (From: Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life)

The false self narcissist lives in a world of delusion and bombastic self adoration. (This post refers to male and female narcissists.)  He expects everyone to pay attention only to him. He is the singular person who exists unless you are the bearer of re-circulating narcissistic supplies.

Deceit is the narcissist’s middle name. This individual is always playing a game, hatching a plot, planning how he will trap, uproot, degrade, diminish and conquer you. This is especially the case when a marriage has disintegrated and you are in the throes of the divorce wars. Narcissists are relentless in their attacks, plots and plans to make sure that you don’t get anything–financial, psychological, emotional–out of the dissolution of the marriage. In fact, narcissists want what legally belongs to you. I have seen so many cases where the abused spouse has been left with almost nothing after a series of cruel, ugly skirmishes during the divorce. The narcissist is always armed with a trickster of an attorney (often another narcissist or socialized sociopath) who is paid the big bucks to collude with his client. Narcissists love to run the table on you during a divorce. Often this includes a tug a war with the children. Narcissists are incapable of love but they use their children as living narcissistic supplies. There is a great ugly series of battles that go on over the children.

The narcissist is a method actor who convinces everyone else that you are the bad person or weak and incompetent one–He tells lies about you to family members and friends indicating that you are psychologically unstable or even crazy.

Knowing in advance the true nature of your narcissistic spouse will help you tremendously to prepare for the divorce. Vital to this process is your learning to take charge and care of yourself. Keep your distance from the narcissist–remember that he/she is always in some state of rage, just waiting to project psychological venom on to you. If you think of the narcissist as a clinical case, this can help you to maintain a clear distance and maintain healthy psychological boundaries.

Surround yourself with individuals whom you trust and who have your welfare uppermost in their minds. Take time for yourself alone. Nourish yourself in every way possible. Seek practices that calm your nervous system–beautiful music, Nature, creative spontaneous writing and journaling, gentle hatha yoga with emphasis on breathing through the nose, acupuncture that helps your nervous system move into the parasympathetic, spending time with people who can be trusted and care deeply about you and your evolution as an individual who deserves deep inner peace and the full use of all of your creative gifts.

 

Narcissists Love to Play Psychological Gotcha!

Narcissists are always plotting and planning your psychological demise if you are in their way.  They come on with their magnificent charm, endless promises, seductive ways and excessive confidence. They know precisely when and how to strike to make you feel ashamed, unworthy, a failure, ugly, a castoff. They have a cruel gift of  knowing exactly when to pop up in your presence when you are feeling particularly vulnerable and at your wits end.

Narcissistic mothers target their scapegoated children with multiple humiliations and caustic criticisms; narcissistic siblings make the unexpected grand entrance in all of their glory to put you down; narcissistic spouses wait for the right moment to emotionally pummel and humiliate you.

Narcissists are feverishly competitive. They must always win over you. They keep score. They know your moods, your weaknesses, how easily you can be deceived with their lies. Since they don’t have a developed conscience they are not burdened by wounding you psychologically, emotionally and financially.  You are not on the same moral footing as the narcissist. He or she doesn’t have a moral compass. Their True North is what they want and must have. Playing their game of Psychological Gotcha they put you back in their control  in the fight or flight sympathetic nervous system.

Be prepared for the Gotcha game of the narcissist by practicing daily healing in the ways that work best for you. Learn how to move toward the parasympathetic calming restorative nervous system through getting the sleep that you need, eating foods that nourish and sustain you, exercising regularly in the way that works best for you, stretching and doing gentle yoga poses with emphasis on breathing through the nose (Nostril breathing activates the parasympathetic nervous system). Creative activities—writing, sketching, painting, music, dance–all of these and more activate the restorative healing parts of your body and mind. Guided meditation is another way of calming the body and mind. Short periods of meditation –3 to 5 minutes a day done consistently moves you toward healing. This accumulates over time.  You will find that you are calmer, stronger, have more physical and psychological stamina.

As you heal and get stronger, you will find others whom you can trust, individuals who are not narcissists and who are empathic. We don’t need a lot of friends, just a few. Friendship is a powerful part of healing and sustaining us throughout our lives.

End the cruel Narcissistic Psychological Gotcha game by using these practices and your deep intuition which always tells you the truth. Pay  close attention to these messages. We tend to wave them off. Don’t share your intuitions with most people. They won’t believe you. It is a waste of your time and effort. You will find very few individuals who trust this kind of knowledge. The more you use your intuition the more powerful it becomes.

Trust the healing process within you. Celebrate your individuality and authenticity. Embrace your creativity. Feel your loving heart.

 

Put Yourself First–Heal from the Narcissistic Spouse

I have found that those who are married to and divorcing narcissists have always put other people in their lives first. They are highly empathic individuals who take care of others. Many of them have narcissistic mothers and/or fathers and learn early that they must obey, dance to the tune of highest expectations, demands, recriminations, threats. “Be perfect or else” was the message they received from the narcissistic mom or dad. As a result these individuals are always in a state of fight or flight. They can’t relax. They become people pleasers and serve others. They don’t learn to give to themselves even when they are feeling ill, exhausted and completely worn out psychologically and emotionally.

Some children of narcissists develop chronic illnesses due to all of the stress, parental deprivation and abuse. I have heard from many of these survivors of the narcissist family wars.

Instead of choosing a partner who will love, appreciate and cherish them, children coming from these pathological backgrounds readily take the bait of the ever so charming magnetic irresistible narcissist. We are inclined to repeat patterns of behavior learned in childhood. These are survival modes that are very powerful. Don’t blame yourself if you have married a narcissist. It is not your fault. You couldn’t have known that you were getting into this dreadful “relationship” that would cause you untold suffering.

Once you recognize and know that you are married to a narcissistic personality and understand that he or she cannot change and have made the decision to divorce, go forward with a detailed  well thought out plan.  The essential part of this process is to put yourself first. You are not going to please the narcissist ever–even if you are perfect!

Pay attention to every detail of your plan of action. Part of this process is your healing practice. This is the first time in your life that you have watched out for yourself.  Take courage in this new freedom road you are constructing. The psychological terrain is unfamiliar–putting yourself first. Know that you are creating new neuronal pathways in your mind, that your body is strengthening, that you will is deepening, that your creativity is thriving—all of your engines are moving along with a new sound–a fine music that you are now hearing. You will become more familiar with this real self that has been inside of you all of the time. Embrace it–love it, find refuge and peace here. This is the thriving original authentic creative lively true self!

Narcissist’s Boundless Hubris in Marriage and Divorce

Hubris–extreme arrogance, haughtiness, high-handedness–describes much of the narcissistic spouse’s deeply ingrained personality style. With no sense of limits, psychological boundaries, one scintilla of empathy or a developed conscience, the narcissist drives in the fast lane of life, weaving in and out, putting everyone else in various forms of psychological, emotional and financial jeopardy. This is especially the case with spouses of narcissists who are married to them or going through the travails of a divorce. (This post refers to female and male narcissists).

I have found that some of the loveliest human beings are married to or divorcing narcissists or narcissistic ex’s. Often the spouse of the narcissist is highly empathic.  I have heard innumerable life stories of the cruelest pain perpetrated on the spouse.  Without a conscience the narcissist is free to do whatever he wishes, to get every prize by cheating, lying, demeaning, intimidating—threatening to vanquish those in his way. Unfortunately, acting boorish and obnoxious often works. The narcissist’s over the top confidence is perceived as strength and mastery in this age of extreme pathological narcissism.

The narcissist is determined to “get to you”–to weaken and annihilate you psychologically in some egregious cases. He is determined to make you lose your temper and explode or to make you cry uncontrollably or to act out in an irrational way.  He is setting traps for your emotional and psychological vulnerabilities all of the time, especially during a divorce. The narcissist is determined and knows that he is entitled to the “spoils” of the marriage—property, investments, bank accounts (even if they are joint ones) and in many cases, he is counting on having the children as his ready narcissistic supplies. Narcissists are very bored with raising children and they only care about the progeny that are very attractive, bright, athletic, filled with charm and high level confident social skills.

A wife or child is a commodity to the narcissist, a way to get re-circulating narcissistic supply. When the wife is no longer fulfilling this voracious need, she is dismissed cruelly and replaced by a younger model. If the replacement has excellent social connections, an incredibly successful career and family money, all the better. The same is true of a female narcissist who is replacing a now hapless, boring husband.

There are no limits or humaneness as the narcissist ruthlessly and brazenly moves through the divorce process. All agreements are off, then on, then postponed.  The narcissist feels superior even to the attorneys and judges he encounters. He is the all knowing brilliant wise person. No one is superior to his perfection. This grandiosity works in this age of inflated egos.

Never be surprised at the outrageousness of the narcissist. Doing in-depth research gives you a detailed picture of these individuals. The research and clinical longitudinal studies and the many years of study indicate that the narcissistic personality is not inclined to change.

Once you are in the process of extricating yourself from the narcissist, take heart in who you are as an individual and give yourself tremendous credit for taking this courageous step. Put your self care first. Some spouses find that high quality psychotherapy helps them move through this process. Maintaining a strong and resilient support system is key to keeping the faith that you will be free and intact to  lead the life that you deserve. Various practices–gentle hatha yoga, guided meditation, acupuncture that calms the nervous system, your form of exercise, the healing power of Nature, etc. are all keys to your success throughout this major shift in your life.

 

Divorcing A Narcissistic Physician–A Waking Nightmare

I have had communications with many women and men who are divorcing narcissistic physicians. (This post refers to male and female narcissistic doctors).

There are innumerable physicians who save lives and improve the health of their patients. They are dedicated, highly informed and gifted at their professions.

In this post I am speaking about divorcing narcissistic physicians. Imagine that you are married to a narcissistic doctor and going through a very nasty prolonged divorce. Some of you have been there and can attest to the relentless, painful unforgiving aspects of going through this series of battles.

Narcissistic doctors, especially those who are highly successful make very large incomes. The amounts are even larger today with the cost of healthcare rising astronomically. One of the scenarios that I hear repeatedly is that with the narcissistic physician you often have a pronounced Jekyll/Hyde series of personality traits. The doctor is above reproach publically. In private he/she is full of volcanic rage, has low impulse control, continually projects his venom on to spouses and children, is obsessively controlling– checking to see who, what, where the spouse is at all times.

Narcissistic doctors play around a lot. Some have more than one affair going at a time. Since they have no conscience this kind of deception or any other doesn’t bother them. After all, as long as their precious egos are getting boosted and no one finds out, what is there to worry about.

Narcissists are full of deceit and duplicity. They continually manipulate and intimidate their spouses and children. They are hypocrites and know how to act like “good people.” This is part of a contrived persona that enhances their image even further.

Divorcing a narcissistic physician takes a lot of detailed planning, regular self care and a divorce team that is competent, knowledgeable, savvy, available, understands the personality traits of the narcissistic personality and is highly experienced at strategies that work with these toxic individuals.

I know of men and women who went through this process on their own without much outside help of any kind–including having to deal with a series of incompetent attorneys. This is truly remarkable. I have tremendous respect for these individuals. They never gave up. They kept going each day–one at a time. They made strategic decisions, protected their children, maintained control over themselves despite even being balled out by other attorneys, counselors, mediators, etc. They were determined to win and were up for the marathon battle.

Start by giving yourself fully earned credit for who you really are–Honor your true self. Don’t blame yourself for having married a narcissistic physician. You could never have known who this person was. Stop making self judgments. Those I know who have come through this process learned to let go of this kind of mind set. They kept themselves in a positive, ready for combat and self contained frame of mind as often as possible. Don’t be judgmental about your meltdowns–You are human after all.

The narcissist is always waiting for you to cave in and will do anything to throw you over. You can surprise even the narcissistic physician. Forget all of his medical training, the schools he/she attended and his walls of degrees. Remember that beneath the grandiose extremely self entitled false self, there is a highly damaged, psychologically empty, true self that is very regressed. You are the adult in this situation. You have the fine character, courage, psychological and emotional intelligence and the deep intuition to move forward in this process and your life.

If you have access to support, use it. Lean on those whom you trust. There may just be a few. I find that this is all we need, especially in this time of your need. Most of all, be kind to yourself.