Dealing with narcissistic family members is exceedingly difficult. After all, these are our brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers, grandparents. We grew up with these individuals. In many instances we share a common gene pool. Even if we don’t, they are part of our family constellation. This thinking is ingrained in most of us, particularly when we were are very young. It is like breathing—father, mother, sister, brother—kin. We are told directly and indirectly to trust our family members. These are the people we can always count on. This is society’s message. But this is not always the truth about our closest relatives, especially if they are narcissists.
If we have narcissistic family members, we can count on this: they are narcissists first and family members, second, third, fourth–often last. This is a difficult and painful truth for those who suffer at their mercy and keep blaming themselves that their narcissistic brother or sister or parent(s) label them–defective, stupid, inept, worthless, naive, even evil.
The narcissist is a master of projection.We all have character deficits but when we are constantly berated with every step and move by the narcissist, we can be sure it is his/her projection. A projection is an unconscious defense mechanism in which the narcissist psychologically ejects his own self-hatred and self-loathing on to someone else. Speaking of self-loathing, for some people, this can be quite a tough place to get out of, especially if this is targeted towards themselves. But it could be as simple as checking out sites like https://www.knowledgeformen.com/i-hate-my-life/, in the hopes of finding a way to manage loneliness and self-loathing. Or other people may find that speaking to someone about how they are feeling could be a way to get through this time in their life.
The highly charged, toxic unconscious feelings the narcissist has about himself are projected on to the sibling, parent, child or other victims who receive and internalize the venom.
Don’t take the bait or ingest the venom. Learning how to specifically identify narcissistic family members will open your eyes wide. Protect and distance yourself from them. Narcissists have neither psychological limits nor boundaries. Be clear about your own boundaries and do not allow yourself to be overrun by the narcissist. Build up your psychological immune system with your knowledge of narcissists, understanding and respect for your unique autonomy and developing strategies for quieting your mind and body as well as increasing your self assertion skills. Visit my website: www.thenarcissistinyourlife.com
Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.
One thought on “Protect Yourself from the Narcissist’s Venom”
Let’s just face it..& come out & just say it. These Narcs are trash. Just b/c a relative is trashy by blood, doesn’t make you trash. You’re probably all class so you rage back at the unearned entitlement. Genes are a crap shoot. Rightfully outraged by the vulgar lack of manners & authentic social inadequies, you’re appalled. They really are an embarrassment but just as the above article notes IT’S ALL pROjeCtiON. As predictable they will project their issues (which BTW,..have issues) onto you as some sort of social embarrassment. Now he’s scrutinizing all of your interactions at a social event like he’s your Svengali. The kicker for the victims is that the psych-covertnarc is completely flying blind in social situations. The covert/stealth narc is shy & insecure, was bullied as a child. Hails from dysfunctional, usually trashy home but feels personally justified translating your every move on the ride home from event. They often suffer from ‘ideas of reference’ & think peole are bothering to be all focusing in public on their mostly unremarkable selves.their childhood home life was 3 steps up from marginal & they were controlled by dictators w/all kinds of trashy issues…yet these deluded narcs O/Coverts appoint themselves our behavioral sensors. Interpreting my social interactions cont’d earlier while I was escaping from you b/you hounded & found me. Sometimes you just click w/others right away. Something they are so incapable of, that exhilorating feeling, a human connection. You may be gifted in this area & they envy you like it’s going out of style b/c you’re responsible for teaching them how to fix possible slight brain damage/genetics. You watch them emulate you w/other people. This is the covert narc who is rightly ashamed of his inadequies & conflicting deep desire to be great. He deserves to be a pornsite owner which fails. He deserves to have an acting career & character on The Sopranos but chagrined to admit it’s his burning passion for fame, power..control. You have to piece them like a puzzle to read between the lines. Exhaustion & a bad investment. Real men don’t make it so hard. The wasted time, investment,quibbles about the silliest, pettiest things. Go build me a large shed instead of rotting in bed Internet porn addiction& expect me to do everything around here. We keep our homes up where I come from. You don’t belong here. Your thought disorder & circular reasoning I won’t miss. Rapid binary mood swings. ..and you who grew up w/a singlemom of 4(that we know about) 3 different dads taking you on prison visits, poor as dirt-YOU, of all trash dare self righteously attempt to critique my social interactions & mannerisms, IT dork? An ogre you can’t take anywhere & ruins every vacation/holiday b/c you envy the gifts you don’t possess. Like being with a competitive female 8th grade fair weather friend from jr. High. Trash beginnings can’t be remedied. I’ll never slum or date down again. Common denom I’ve found with most Narcs a/researching this subtype for months on end. Radiohead’s Creep comes to mind. Last line so fitting.
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