It is difficult for most people to identify and recognize the true nature of the narcissistic personality. Therapists are often fooled by them. There are therapists who are narcissists who go for the gold of desperate clients—I have known some of these and I’ll bet you have.
Don’t blame yourself for being charmed into surrender by a narcissist. It is often very difficult to say “No” to them. One of the best offenses is to research the narcissistic personality in-depth.
This is the age of narcissism, a time when these individuals have risen to the top of the heap in our worlds of business, commerce, the healing arts, government, Wall Street, banking, etc. The cult of the external image is fully formed in our society today. People are judged and assessed by how they look, their wealth, success in their professions, their youthfulness. The adoration of the externals prevails in this society today. There are unique individuals who are taking an opposite route to the evolution of the self, compassion for others and leading a simple life–but these are the exceptions. Shopping itself has become a kind of religion. Incessant travel is an escape that is considered wonderful–even an accomplishment. There is nothing the matter with travel but when individuals are in a swirl of obsessive shopping and travel and continually externalizing themselves, they are not growing inside.
Narcissists announce themselves in various ways. The classic ones are grandiose, charming, highly confident, extremely self entitled. They come bearing gifts of promises that they are entranced with you. They make promises that we want to believe. They make us feel better about ourselves, more exciting than we have felt alone. They bring ever vibrant Technicolor into our lives. The classic narcissist is in command and we are easily seduced into his/her world. (This post refers to male and female narcissists.) They promise to lift us out of our misery—They become our saviors in a sense. That is how convincing they are. They speak of their love for us; we believe them–That’s how fine their acting comes across. I call them fine method actors.
You join with the narcissist in a close relationship. You make plans with the narcissist and believe that you are now different because of this developing relationship. You put faith in this. It becomes a central theme within you.
You trust this person and make the assumption that he will always tell you the truth and act accordingly. Along the way you discover that this person has been lying and deceiving you. You are shocked. You confront the narcissist and he tells you that you are mistaken–that you have misunderstood–even that you are confused and crazy. So many victims of narcissists believe that there is something the matter with them. You are a person of integrity and think that others have these same characteristics. The narcissistic personality does not. He does not have a developed conscience. The “conscience” of the narcissist is determined by whether he will get caught or not. Narcissists are continually lying; it is automatic for them. They have been deceitful all of their lives. This is a hard concept for those with a true solid conscience. It is very important that you understand that not everyone has a developed conscience. Always keep this in mind in identifying the narcissistic personality.
Narcissists are loyal to no one. They can have many relationships at one time. These are not authentic ones since the narcissist is incapable of true emotional intimacy.
Narcissists are constantly seeking narcissistic supplies which makes them feel fuller. Inside, deep in the unconscious, the narcissist’s world is bleak and empty. As a result the narcissist is always in search of praise, adulation, even veneration. Those who are high level narcissists in the world have re-circulating sources of narcissistic supply–people that come to worship at their thrones.
Narcissists cannot be loyal to anyone. They move from one victim to the next. One person is interchangeable with another. When you no longer supply their need for image enhancement, your role as their servant, etc. they replace you quickly. They can’t be bothered with you anymore. You have serviced their purpose. They send you out of the paradise of their presence. As devastating as this can be, it is opportunity to escape from the imprisonment of life shared with a narcissistic personality. I have known many individuals who have made this travel to freedom and rediscovered their true selves. .
Your intuition will tell you who the narcissist is–you are getting signals about this person’s true nature. Pay attention to them. They are telling you the truth.
Remember to value and put yourself and self care first in your life. This is not selfish. It is essential.
Have quiet times for the beauty of Nature, exercise in the ways that work best for you, explore your creative gifts in all of their forms. Practice gentle hatha yoga, do short guided meditation that appeals to you. Spend time with friends whom you trust who care deeply about you.
Knowing and appreciating who you are will always protect you from becoming mystified by narcissistic personalities. They will announce their presence to you and you will know exactly who they are. They have told you this in every way. Congratulations!
6 thoughts on “When Narcissists Tell You Who They Are–Believe Them”
Dear Dr. Linda,
I read your blog frequently. I believe I have only written once or twice, but I felt compelled to write tonight to give you appreciation for this particular entry, which was so eloquently written! Most blogs are heavy in “techno-speak”, the lingua franca of psychologists; unlike them, you have the aptitude and unique ability to transcend that language and put it into everyday examples of this personality disorder. I applaud you for that absolutely unique ability! I visit your blog regularly and I feel so ferklempt when I see that you haven’t yet written a new entry for several days at a time, because I so adore your posts and wait for them!!! I am certain that your life is busy and you cannot write sooner. I know this in my heart. But somehow I wish you could write more, and more frequently. Alas, you are human, as am I, and only have so much time, as the rest of us. Thank you SO MUCH for your writing. Please know, I have learned so much from you. Kudos to you, Dr. Linda! Please keep posting!
Dear Ms Martinez
I’m from Greece. For five years I watch your website. I lived 35 years with a narcissist. For years we had problems and I could not understand what was happening. He had convinced me that was my fault for problems with his mother and our children. His contradictory and frightening behavior in the house was causing many problems in children, which did not give correct directions but also undermine and my own work by reducing me before their eyes. Then I had the feeling that something was going on behind my back and that many times he lied to me. He had a girl very moderate occurrence in his office, divorced, uneducated and without any income, but 20 years junger, and extremely shrewd itself duplicity. As he told me when I discovered their relationship, it was not the first time he had a mistress !!. When I realized that he had relations with her in the beginning I tried to save our marriage to be able to study our children. Despite his promise that ended this relationship, he continued to see her whith passion and obsession. He said that she makes him feel God, that he is the boss and she is the servant and this is the right relationship between a man and a woman ! There I saw another man. I left him. It took me a long time to put the pieces of the puzzle in place, figure out what kind of man he was, to explain the contradictions in his behavior. Your site helped me highly in this and I thank you very much for that. Now I feel that all those years I lived in an environment like the one described by Kafka. I have no desire to go back, I feel like I went through hell. I needed the help of aspecialist to recover. He continues this relationship without being progressed to marriage. What concerns me now is that he is trying to impose her on our children, which still need him financially. He wants to have our children relations with her. I new her for years, it was me who asked him to give her a job ! She now behaves as if nothing bad had happened ! I do not want to have my children relations with such people, nor to live near people with an unhealthy relationship. What is your counsel in this matter?
Forgive me for my mistakes in language.
i am in extreme pain being with a narcissistic spouse
Thank you for explaining & providing some tips to identify and avoid NPDs. I have been attracting them all of my life since growing up in a home riddled with narcissism. It has… no! They have taken their toll on my self-identity and self worth. Enough already!!! I will continue my quest to Know mySELF and express myself in myriad ways; and I remain hopeful that, in turn, trustworthy & genuinely loving people will enter my life. Again, thank you 🙂
I’ve dated at least 2 narcissists. Not realizing the concept of narcissism then, I can CLEARLY see it now. If you are EVER dating a man and he says you are better off without him (or something similar) BELIEVE IT AND RUN… AS FAST AS YOU CAN!!!!!!!!!!!
last one said walk my walk and talk my talk and no one will ever hurt you. boy did he hurt me.
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