What are we grieving? The many stages of comprehension. This is a longer read but an important one.
From my Book – Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist!
It all begins with the nightmare of going from being in love (idealized) to being hated (devalued and discarded.) Then discovering the web of deceit and lies at so many levels. Next coming to terms with understanding that you were only an object or Narcissistic Supply and somehow that has to make REAL sense to you. You begin to understand that everything you shared in your past, the memories, dreams and plans were corrupted by the Narcissist’s disordered agenda AND this relationship/love was only real to you! Then you realize what was real to this Narcissist was an agenda to extort what they could through this manufactured love AND THEY USED YOU. You hear a term called gas-lighting which basically describes someone (your Narcissist) trying to make you believe you were mentally disordered or INSANE!
You realize that you don’t have the ability to create real closure. You are not able to let go with love but instead you HAVE to let go with an ‘understanding’ that the person you loved is severely damaged and dangerous and you have to somehow accept and live with this. Your belief system is completely shattered. You hear your Narcissist boasting about having sex with a new person, or perhaps married, or they gone on with their life so quickly, and they are BRAGGING about it to intentionally hurt you and now that feels like a NEW stab to your heart. You start to get nostalgic for what could have been, and you only lose touch with the reality that they are disordered and you start questioning yourself AGAIN. You wonder what it is that YOU did wrong. It is a vicious back and forth cycle that only leaves you so confused and frozen in time. All of these thoughts and more become a part of detaching from this monster BUT unfortunately the coefficient that you loved them is in the mix as well and you are vulnerable and broken! The Narcissist is woven into your memories and your life in very conflicting ways and it is just too confounding BUT TODAY YOU REALIZE THAT NONE OF IT WAS REAL!
You would have to take a course in psychology that deals with personality disorders to completely internalize that they are a Narcissist and disordered to understand the rationale behind this abuse. You probably have never even heard of a Narcissist or associated them with psychological/emotional abuse AND that you were with one. On the other hand, you still have many mixed messages from this Narcissist saying that YOU are the disordered one here and to blame for everything, so you ARE questioning your own mental capacity trying to establish where the real problem lies. IS IT YOU OR IS IT YOUR EX? It is like being on a roller coaster ride through hell and you have to figure all of this out on your own. You have to somehow put this all together in a short period of time going from loving this person to now accepting that they ARE the predator and you were prey. It is just an insurmountable feat to pull this together in your mind especially when you are already so vulnerable and worn down by the many years of this abuse. BUT NOW you start to realize that you were a target/victim of emotional and psychological abuse and that is just a new level of confusion and more that you have to deal with and somehow sort out.
Narcissists can be your mother/father, brother/sister, wife/husband, boyfriend/girlfriend, the mother/father of your biological children, a friend, or boss, and more than likely you have spent MANY years with them as well. You may be financially or legally connected to them. You need a lot of time and an education to process this. You start crawling your way out of this and then you realize that this Narcissist has BRANDED YOU as the abuser, defective, mentally ill, as well as destroyed your integrity by using familiarity against you. They are out there SMEARING your good name to everyone that is important to you. You are really starting to see this monster behind the mask and you LOVED this creature? This is more like psychological rape and you are left there alone to pull yourself together and find some sort of help, but where do you start and what fires do you put out first. It is no longer a matter of the denial, it is reality and you have to face this and try to function in your day to day world as if you are the healthy individual you once were. You end up stumbling and picking yourself up over and over again! It seems like there is no end to this and then anxiety and depression set in.
When you start out on the journey to recovery you are faced with some very difficult objectives and that is picking up all the pieces of your shattered life and trying to put them all back together again. It would be akin to trying to put your house together after a hurricane totally destroyed it. Everything that WAS your life and memories are now shattered and strewn over a hundred-mile radius. You try to sift through the rubble and damage to save what you can, but it is almost impossible to dig in AND through all the piles of debris to find anything familiar or savable. Your whole world is so distorted from the damage that this hurricane caused and you can only see the resulting damage from this disaster and now you have to put this all back together to achieve a cohesive normal ‘YOU’ again and basically do it all by yourself! You basically feel fearful from all of the uncertainty that lies before you.
You start the process of recovery in disbelief, fear, and shock! The shock in essence numbs you temporarily from going completely insane by giving you the ability to separate yourself from the totality of this disaster or some breathing room – it is nature’s sedative. Once the dust settles though you start to see the whole picture standing before you and now reality sets in. As you are setting out on this journey your emotions are going to be overwhelming as you try to understand all of this and they get in the way and confuse you. You are trying to sort through pure chaos and you are going to respond to it with tremendous ambivalence, anger, hatred, vengefulness, and MANY other negative feelings. Along with this you will be doing some deep soul searching trying to put perspective on so many opposing thoughts that don’t correlate with the love you believed in AND it creates a huge void and a great sense of being so lost and alone in all of this.
Your reactions are actually quite normal, and this is just you being a human with confusion, emotions, and empathy striving to find that cohesiveness. You are dealing with two CONFLICTING realities – you were in love and believed it was real for so long, but the reality is that there never was a real person there that loved you because it was a manufactured love and hideous con job because this person was severely disordered. You MUST experience all of these feelings and crazy emotions to move forward to understanding the REAL ‘whys’ as they concern all of this. Even as confusing as all of this is it is a necessary process to actualize and organize what you can! This is how you move forward and that is a learning process that includes the truth that has disabled you in the first place.
You MUST learn everything you can about this disorder and the psychopathy of a pathological Narcissist. You are not dealing with a so called normal breakup where two people move forward with closure. You are having to leave this relationship and whatever love you believed in with ONY an understanding of something very unfamiliar to you (a Narcissist/psychological abuse.) This will all come together when you start to see the patterns emerge and get that ‘ah ha’ moment. This is where you connect the dots and where you begin to bridge your situation to being abused by a Malignant Narcissist! There is nothing normal with abuse nor do you have much experience from your past to compare this to unless you were a victim of this abuse before.
You are dealing with hardcore psychopathy here and a personality disorder. This is exactly why you have such a hard time wrapping your head around all of this! This is real, and you need a helping hand to put a perspective on all of this.
You will return to the past to recall, remember and review many details. This is not you obsessing but instead a viable part of the process that is very necessary for recovery and healing. This is all new material and you are starting from square one to internalize what this abuse is and connecting it to what you thought existed but did not exist (the love, relationship, memories, dreams, goals, etc.) So, you must actualize what really existed and replace those emotional connections with the stark reality of the truth. You must now emotionally detach yourself from the disordered Narcissist that you loved and grasp the reality of this massive deception that eroded your being and world.
It is hard to separate from the emotions and accept the reality of the situation, BUT you have to tell yourself that you loved a monster. You didn’t know they were a monster, because they are predators that manipulate their prey into the abuse. BUT every time you start remembering the love you believed in, you must now turn those thoughts around and say that you were psychologically and emotionally raped by a monster and predator. You can’t be kind with your thoughts and give the Narcissist the benefit of the doubt because there are NO doubts that Narcissists are destructive abusers to everyone. ANY benefit of the doubt that you allow the Narcissist only keeps you connected to the abuse and will not allow the closure you so desperately need to move forward! You were a target/victim of ABUSE!
You must constantly tell yourself and reinforce that this was not a normal or real person that COULD love you. You have to accept that it was a huge lie and most importantly that it had nothing to do with you because the Narcissist managed you down to believe that you are to blame and the disordered one! You HAVE to accept that it did happen to you and there is no rhyme nor reason to it because Narcissists are character disordered and in a class of their own. They are dangerous to human beings and destructive and you are so FORTUNATE to be FREE of them. You are a testament to this very fact because you have experienced their psychological abuse and have been severely damaged by a relationship with them. You have to completely switch off from thoughts that pull you into believing they will change or you can fix them – YOU CAN’T!
Now you have to actualize that there is so much goodness in you and seriously that is what this Narcissist wanted to own and destroy and that is why they targeted you. You ARE a good person and probably an AMAZING person so don’t ever lose touch with this because the Narcissist told you differently. They are disordered and negative and they live with this premise to make everyone else around them unstable by managing them down. THIS is what psychopaths do to their targets, manage them down to nothingness to control them.
You have to create a discipline to stop looking at the ‘what ifs’ or ‘could I have done this or that’ or that somehow you caused this abhorrent treatment. You have to stop yourself from trying to obtain information about what they are doing through social media OR trying to make any type of contact with them. You seriously have to just stop thinking about them as being anything real to you and concentrate on YOU. Tell yourself that this is DONE! Yes, there are situations that you must stay in contact with them, but again you must separate the emotions and break the chain that binds you to their psychopathy and keep it to the business at hand. Ask yourself what it is you would want back (as in fixing the relationship?) Do you want to enter back into the abuse to experience more dehumanization, lies, betrayal and extortion? No of course not! Lock into this message and put your happiness first! Remember that a Narcissist will ALWAYS use chaos to pull you back into the abuse to have control over you so NEVER allow it again.
Now as far as connecting to the reasons WHY you were the target of this disordered Narcissist – in a nutshell it is because they are predators after prey pure and simple. With this type of encounter with horrendous abuse we definitely have a strong desire to re-evaluate our life and behavior. Again this is normal and can be progressive in your recovery because it is your desire and ability to grow, transcend and move forward learning from the situation and looking inward. The encounter will provide a spark to grow and evaluate your inner self to correct anything that kept you tied to the abuse and you will correct all of that with introspection and boundaries – but that will happen once you traveled through the truth with REAL KNOWLEDGE that this was abuse and you are no longer vulnerable and caught up in the distorted emotions and confusion. Acceptance will move you forward, anything else will pull you right back into the confusion as well as more abuse and you will only have to start at square one AGAIN!
Try not to be your own therapist and psychoanalyze yourself because we are not trained to do this. Seek out a QUALIFIED therapist to do this instead if you need personalized help. Also, the world is still out there and as much as you don’t want to get back to that world you HAVE to or you will be frozen in the confusion and fear! Find people who will emotionally support you and do not make you doubt yourself. Those people who try to tell you or imply that you are somehow at fault are going to make you only start blaming yourself again. They are seriously not the people you want to help you through this. AGAIN, you are dealing with a character disordered Narcissist and they are an anomaly and aberration and NORMAL rules do not apply to them nor normal theories. You need to pull out the big guns to end this battle. Friends and loved ones are not qualified to do this. They can love and support you, but they can’t fix this. You need to seek out other targets and survivors that understand.
Lastly the question or arguments of what a Narcissist is. Are they evil or disordered/sick? My thoughts are they are possibly both, but it doesn’t matter. What really matters is that you recognize the pattern of this abuse so whether you believed you were abused by a demon or a personality disorder you were abused and you must free yourself of them forever. You must accept this and stop trying to figure any of this out beyond accepting the truth about their actions that describe who/what they are and diverting all of your attention to your recovery and growth! They are not going to change, rescue you or do anything but abuse you more! You can do this – I promise. No/minimal contact to start on the road to recovery, freedom and a healthy mind again. Greg
They blame us for everything to keep us locked up in our own thoughts trying to figure out what WE did wrong, or how to fix this.
Among everything else a Narcissist does they BLAME us for everything to keep us in that distorted fog of constant confusion – or locked up in our minds and hearts trying to figure out what is wrong, or how to fix this. There is no fix except to get out completely!
From my Book: Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with a Narcissist
The reality of what they really are: A Narcissist lacks all social graces in the most extreme ways because underneath their ‘seductive’ façade, they don’t honor any human rights, any standard, respect individuality, have integrity, or obey any written law. They live life in an extremely pathological and abusive manner. They imitate a functioning human being and take everything they want and need through some extreme and manipulative methods. They also get bored easily with their conquests SINCE they lack the mechanisms to form healthy bonds (and decisions), so they STRAY very easily to keep the excitement and adulation flowing in their world. Now it is bad enough they are life’s extortionist, but they also seem to loathe all healthy loving people that would dare express their individuality, question them or demand accountability, so they lose their patience with us quickly and psychologically attack our minds in an effort to destroy our life as we know it. Like any other bully you have to disengage from the Narcissist because if you don’t, they will only attack you in unimaginable ways to destroy your integrity as well as your life. They have to win the battle they have with life, people and essentially the WHOLE world! You will ‘seemingly’ end up being the crazy one and the abuser because they will make you out to be everything bad/wrong just like a psycho bully would react to remove any blame from themselves and pass it onto you, basically their back-stabbing and smear campaign. Not a very pretty package at all. Just always remember, you haven’t done ANYTHING wrong to deserve this because they don’t function like other human beings. They don’t even have a clue what liking, caring or LOVING is so they live without it by pretending they know it, but you CAN’T pretend to love especially when you have no empathy or morals, and it catches up with the Narcissist very quickly because they are so ‘out of control’ and careless.
What it boils down to: Narcissists relate to other human beings as objects. You know objects, the things to use and ab-use for self-serving purposes. Things that have no rights, things that are inanimate, things that have no feelings. Perhaps a good example would be like a tool that performs a certain function, and we are just one of MANY of these “tools” that they USE. Greg
They are personality disordered and toxic abusers period. NONE of this had anything to do with you or what you did – nobody deserves to be abused – EVER! Please accept this and stop believing in them and put your energy into you.
From my Book: Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with a Narcissist.
It is hard to accept that EVERYTHING you experienced with this person (the Narcissist) was only real to you because you were manipulated into believing so. You spent a great deal of time and energy living out your dreams, expectations, making plans for a future, celebrating holidays, maybe even having children together as NORMAL people do and have done! You believed it was REAL love and it just wasn’t. It was psychological abuse and you were basically brain-washed, conditioned and managed down to a point that your ability to function normally and be an individual was lost. Reality as you knew it was corrupted and lost because you were abused by a personality disordered person!
Life has taught you to love and that love is real and people have successful relationships. Unfortunately it didn’t teach you (us) that there are also real life predatory abusers that will manipulate you into an toxic situation using this amazing and beautiful emotions of care or love to manipulate, extort, dehumanize, debilitate and basically destroy you. The lesson is written within those few words and that is none of this is/was your fault or about you NOT knowing real love or being a fool or any other reason that says it was your fault. To walk away with all of this in mind requires your inner strength to accept the truth of just how disordered this person was and they were basically a predator. You can’t get into their heads in any form or fashion to get closure or any sort of a REAL apology – you will only get more lies and abuse until you shut them down completely. Greg
They are FAKE period!
From my Book: Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with a Narcissist
They are the biggest con artists that exist, and they mean to extort everything they can from you. They have unlocked the door to your head, and they are planning on using that entry to their advantage. They will move right in manipulate and manage down most everything that is your reality as you KNEW it. A skilled and extreme narcissist knows just how to reflect your image right back onto you so that you feel like you are almost twins. What’s not to like and trust when you have EVERYTHING in common?
A skillful Narcissist can tell anybody and everybody a great story just like reciting a well-known fairy tale because they are some of the greatest storytellers. They can weave fictional tales and lies into a complex story about themselves. They mesmerize you with amazing facts, statistics, trivia, history of events, to the point that you feel overwhelmed and just amazed at their acuity and accuracy. They are always the center of these stories, often re-writing their personal history, and lying to embellish the stories. One thing you can say is that they are hardly boring with their accounts of their amazing world and life.
They can incessantly talk and talk about most anything without skipping a beat with their interesting information. They are human chameleons that study and imitate the human condition, but with a goal to further their power by enhancing their stature and influence the people around them to get what they crave, and that is admiration, attention and supply. Undoubtedly, they exaggerate their every claim and position in their life. They are addicted to this omnipotence and we are what they need to use as a mirror to see this amazing reflection of themselves. Unfortunately, what they do in the darkness without a care to the people that love them is also part of the equation with their ability to tell an amazing story to cover up their out-of-control lifestyle or basically lie.
They lie to weasel their way in and out of any situation and come up smelling like a rose. They are pathological liars and controllers in every sense of the word and hide their hideous and perverted life. This is the sad reality of a human connection with them and when you keep that connection alive it turns personally disastrous and destructive as the truth becomes evident that they are not fully functioning human beings and they will take your life down with them.
Narcissists work extremely hard at making themselves believable as it concerns their overt lies and myths about themselves. They arm themselves with a vast array of learned information they have harvested through their observations of other humans. They acquire and then wear, personalize or enhance this information as if it is truly theirs. So what is the goal with all of this? To snag you into his/her Narcissistic lair to make you supply them with the things they need and can’t get because they are a dark and manipulative personality that envies life, love and people. No contact is the solution always! Greg
***** There is a space at the end to add anything else that you feel they fake.
Let’s talk about healing.
From my Book: From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with a Narcissist
This abuse keeps you hyper focused on the past by only viewing the present and the future through the negative perspective of the abusive relationship or those negative messages that were forced into your head and heart. When you’re in an emotionally/psychologically abusive relationship, the Narcissist always reminded you of everything you have ever done wrong and basically told you that you will never change. They do this with the constant managing down with something new or old and remind you of it constantly. There was never much that was ever directed at you in a positive manner either, instead everything you did was devalued where you continually strived to do better in response to the devaluation and that became your normal with them. What did this make you feel like? Worthless! Basically it is the devaluation stage of the abuse and that is where these negative messages became imprinted on your mind! It is insidious and sadistic or dehumanization of a human being.
1) It is about reinserting healthy messages back into your mind and life by desensitizing and deprogramming the negative ones from the abuse or they will run in the back of your mind forever. Abuse doesn’t define you, it defines the actions of the abuser! Start to program your mind and life around the truth that you are and always were a deserving and good person, nothing has changed there. Concentrate on NOW! YES your reality was distorted in a manner that has disabled you but your spirit is able to recover from this as it is meant to. You can unlearn the negativity by purging it out and replacing it with positivity to re-enter the world as a whole person again with some new lessons and boundaries concerning your future and your life. This is your goal to heal so your life is surrounded by what you truly deserve. Don’t allow yourself to pay a debt back to a corrupt person that set you up so that they could yield a huge return from their investment in you or their big con job. Ask yourself how you want to feel after this abuse? Of course your answer is that you want full recovery and to feel complete about life again as you did before this Narcissist came into your life! Just watch how you improve every day you practice this as well as putting distance between yourself and everything Narcissist! It is little steps to get yourself there.
2) Introspection is important now – so delve deep down inside to heal any broken parts that can make you vulnerable to toxic people. We must also understand that change is essential to recovery, OR we must be willing to change for our own well-being! You definitely have the power to make any and all the changes you want and need as well as the power to undo the damage that was inflicted onto you. Right now this is very new to you and you are vulnerable so you will not accomplish a quick or immediate recovery because it is a process. Sure, you may not be able to make strong decisions and changes right here and now because you may not even know exactly what you want and need. It is about small steps because your belief system has been harmed and disabled by the emotional and psychological aspects of this abuse. At least add some self-compassion to the formula as well – you deserve it! There is huge price we pay because of the abuse and that is the emotional and psychological burden that sits squarely on our mind and in our heart that we must purge out of us to regain trust for a good world that DOES exist out there.
3) FIND and get all of the support you need. Beg, borrow and steal it if you have to, but get there and start to reason this out with the goal to move on and forward. Listen to and hear the stories of other abuse victims and survivors. Use your voice as the tool to get support. Seek out professional counseling if you feel stuck in a dark place and too vulnerable to function. Think about this as if it was a physical injury to your body and how you would or better yet MUST seek out help to recover. This is an injury to your mind and that is a much deeper wound that requires a great deal of attention and support to heal. There are groups that are probably within your area that you can attend. Survivors often in turn form groups that support other targets/victims of Domestic Violence and make no mistake as it concerns emotional and psychological abuse because it is Domestic Violence. The important thing here is to seek out professionals and survivors that have real experience with this type of abuse as well as with trauma or PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) that can be an outcome of many years of this type of abuse.
4) Get REAL information that concerns itself with Narcissistic abuse. The wealth of knowledge you gain by educating yourself will benefit your recovery and give you that ‘ah ha’ moment to release from the Narcissist. You will see that these abusers have a similar pattern as if they all read the same book on ‘How to be a Narcissist.’ From there you will assimilate the information in a manner that enables you to clearly see that this was never about you, but actually about them. You will also see that YOU are not the only one that fell for this trap, nor are you deficient in some way as if you allowed it, mentally ill, to blame, worthless or any of the Narcissist’s target words that managed you down. Introspection will allow you to look inwardly to create new boundaries and to look at your part in all of this.
5.) BOUNDARIES – learning to just say NO! You will devalue YOURSELF if you accept toxic/bad behavior and allow other people’s abusive judgements of yourself, until you learn how to identify them and get rid of them once and for all. You will confuse these abusive actions with being real as it concerns you and your well-being! Someone’s ill placed and destructive judgement as it concerns you is an aberration of your basic rights as a human being. You cannot make or allow ANY assessment of yourself based on the denial of your ability to speak with the truth/freedom and without the fear of their retribution or loss because of someone’s distorted version of the truth as it concerns you – that is condemning yourself. We all have the basic rights to speak freely, form and maintain good relationships, and live in peace because these are our basic human rights! Unfortunately when you entered into this relationship with a Narcissist you did not know what the future held for you, but with the knowledge you now have you can break the chain and move forward to a healthy and good life.
6.) Look at the real goodness out there that you have ignored while you were completely giving yourself away to this Narcissist. Look for the real miracles that are really all around you and get involved in such a manner that these wonderful things will surround you with goodness and bring you back to loving the world as you once did. There is no room in your heart and mind for thinking about that Narcissist or any ‘what if’s’ concerning any type of relationship with them, reconciliation or closure. They just don’t exist as a real person that you could be any part of or love. Let them go so you can find unconditional love in your world. Even though you are hurt and in pain focus on something/anything that will yield the smallest bit of self-compassion and goodness back into your life. DO NOT isolate yourself from people because you are only feeding those insecurities from the abuse. You are an amazing person that belongs out there in the world with people. You don’t have to hide to recover, so get out because the sunshine and warmth out in the world will do you good. You don’t have to do anything but show the world the person you are. If you are sad you don’t have to speak, but you can smile and make even the smallest connection with life and people. Just don’t lock yourself up in isolation. Change your routine because it needs refreshed! Again there are miracles out there! Keep your health in check because the many years of abuse has stressed you out physically. Maybe employ a walk in your routine, but get those endorphins activated because they all charge those brain cells up with a little euphoria! Take the focus back on your life while you are healing and allow a little bit of newness and joy to get in there as well. Try it and you will see that what I say is real and good for you! You are starting a new journey that will lead you right back into life again where you belong!
Will this heal you completely? No but it gets you into the direction you need to be. Recovering from this abuse is recovering from those horrid messages of shame, blame, fear, worthlessness and many other negative things or things that took your power away. How do you replace your power? By empowering yourself with positive messages that will naturally purge all of that negativity out of you and replacing it with real truth and positive new adventures that are nowhere near the Narcissist-Land that you once resided at.
Great description of the manipulation and chaos a Narcissists uses to malign all of their their target/victims. Let the truth be your freedom from this abuse – we must stop believing in ANY part of them.
From my Book: Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with a Narcissist.
Great description of the manipulation and chaos a Narcissists uses to malign all of their target/victims. Let the truth be your freedom from this abuse – we must stop believing in ANY part of them.
Here is a sampling of what they do to support their many games of control – lets call them ‘tools of their trade!’
They are psychotic blowhards, braggers, brow-beaters, psycho-bullies, arrogant, big-headed, and one enormous lie.
They are extremely skilled at making and warping your reality with their words, actions and manipulations basically conditioning you to crave their constant approval.
They build you up then knock you down. They will make you feel loved and very special, then they emotionally distance themselves from you to keep you unsure of the relationship and your reality.
They are a mishmash of behaviors and actions that they have harvested from different people they have met at different times in their life. All of their ideas or ways of behaving in any given situation are stolen from others, people they know or perhaps think of as special or an authority. They morph into these qualities like an actor memorizing their role in a play or a movie. It is all an act to fulfil their agenda for whatever their need may be at that particular moment.
They push your buttons like an elevator, with constant ‘ups and downs’ to keep you off-balance blameworthy OR the very opposite of this with positive compliments to lock you back up into the cycle of abuse.
They groom you with subtle to extreme manipulation with a combination of charm and rage (harm) to keep you controlled.
Their sense of omnipotence and self-importance (extreme neediness) means that they will manage down the conversations of others and bring attention back onto themselves.
They are PATHOLOGICAL liars, using all forms of lies to deceive. To quote a friend of mine, “If they are breathing, they are lying!”
They treat people as servants and expect them to do mundane things or always pay their way, since they feel so deserving and too important to do them. They manage people down to be more of a servant to them without a voice.
They constantly use “I”, “me,” and “my” when they talk because they are the most important thing in the world – it is ALWAYS about them.
You will very rarely if ever hear them talk about their innermost thoughts, life, memories, or dreams, because there are none that are real and personal to them, BUT they will LIE and make up situations to create a false image of their extreme goodness and amazing life. They will even pose in pictures with their biological children (for example) as if they are such a real participant in their world but their spouse has done ALL of the work and the Narcissist is just always there to pose for the photo opportunities and take the credit, but did NOTHING real to support the spouse’s efforts in raising them.
They remain at a childlike level of maturity where there is never any growth or operable maturity in their thinking.
It is always “me, myself, and I” and never ever “we” unless they need something and then they will manipulate you once more to believe in the “we.”
They express fake empathy, and use it as a tool so that they con unsuspecting targets into their lair of darkness.
They only “give to get” by being nice or helpful expecting reciprocation. Always an agenda to get or take something as supply.
They present themselves as “having it all together or being on top of the world” never showing or divulging their many failures, weaknesses AND darkness!
They shift to a defensive mode and/or rage very frequently when they feel threatened or are made accountable for their deceptive manner. This is a HUGE control mechanism to keep you in a subservient place or role in their lives!
They apologize, but it is ALWAYS shallow and never means there will be a real change in the bad behavior they were called on, it just means they are reeling you back to abuse you more for supply!
They deflect or run from their own problems rather than addressing them responsibly AND just blame someone else in the world.
They will demand your trust rather than earning it and they will never be transparent enough for you to see any of their real qualities only the fake ones they create to shore up their ‘good’ image. They KNOW that they aren’t real enough to trust, so they always deflect to hide what they really are.
They see you as an extensions of themselves, an object to use, you are never an individual and they will resist your every attempt at freedom from being a source of supply until they have taken everything they can or are bored with you and found a better source of supply then they will just move on without a thought.
They re-write history, create incredulous and false stories, euphemisms, make up their own rules and laws but obey none. Their truth is completely FALSE!
They always talk about themselves to stay in control – our role is that of an entity like a mirror where they can stroke their ego through the false image they reflect onto us!
They find all of your weaknesses and exploit them to make you feel vulnerable and worthless.
They honor NO personal boundaries and rarely listen or respect your “No.” They will trample down every boundary you have but expect you to honor all of their boundaries, everything with them is a double-standard.
They will easily take advantage of others to reach their own goals without giving their actions a second thought. There is absolutely NO empathy in their world, they just don’t care about hurting other people to achieve their goals or agenda.
They will take or steal whatever they want from you or anybody. What is yours is theirs (without asking!)
Their façade is to always appear to be tough-minded, unyielding and unemotional to remain in control of others. But they will react to criticism with anger, blame-shifting, shaming or humiliating others to maintain their façade.
They fail to recognize people as individuals and consequently demean, devalue and dehumanize everybody that enters their lair of deceit. They could aptly be described as sadistic toward others.
They are very aggressive, hostile, verbally vicious, MEAN, and will punish anybody that wounds their delicate ego. They will divert to their defensive mode and rip you apart with their rage and disgusting words. They think nothing of making fun of somebody physically to empower themselves. This makes them feel like they are in control.
They will rationalize everything to make sure they always come out on top by negating praise that is appropriated for someone else.
They will steal your idea, your quote, your plan, your wisdom and EVEN your life and make it their own. They will fake their credentials, re-write history, name drop, and lie on their resume or about their credentials – anything to get what they want without earning it the correct way.
They can create damaging chaos in any organization or business environment and cause dissention among the people that work there. This includes volunteer situations, church organization or virtually any group setting that they join.
This is a PARTIAL list of how they successfully utilize their ‘crazy making’ into an operative agenda in every situation or managing us down. It is death by a million cuts. Their abuse is never confined to just relationships they abuse every person and or situation that they are a participant. Their abuse is all too familiar to their families, biological children, friendships, co-workers, and organizations they are involved in. Unfortunately the closer you are to them the more apparent their abuse becomes. They charm their way into everybody’s lives and ALWAYS harm them. I coined the phrase from “charm to harm.” Allowing a Narcissist into your life is a train wreck waiting to happen. You must avoid them like the plague because their crazy making is really psychological abuse that severely damages people, their careers, and their whole life. No/minimal contact is the only anecdote to their destruction and poison! You CAN’T allow them into any aspect of your life! Lock them out of your heart and mind! NO CONTACT! Greg
Everything a Narcissist says to us are merely words to manipulate the present situation into whatever direction they want it to go – both positive and negative – or to get something they are after. Their words lack any semblance of truth and are usually the very opposite of what they really mean!
Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist.
It is hard if not impossible to fully wrap our heads around the outlandish behavior of a Narcissist or their psychopathic mindset, so we really shouldn’t try to as it relates to attempting to figure them out OR debate them. Narcissists INVEST in the very words they use at every moment in their life – it is done to provide them with new opportunities – there is no rhyme or reason to it except to con or manipulate somebody. I believe they even have their own language patterns and it is delusional at its basis and only ‘doubletalk’ to meet their agenda to extort other people’s lives. We must really understand that everything that comes out of them have NO basis of truth to them – again everything is connected to the bigger picture to manipulate people, charm or harm them, anger, divide and conquer, backstab, smear, devalue, objectify them, and control them.
They are only seducers that use their ‘word scripts’ to extort life and people. If I had to interpret and give some examples of their words, it would go like this:
1. “I love you” means “I want something to give me a ‘high’ at this very moment like a drug addict taking a hit from their favorite drug.”
2. “I would NEVER intentionally hurt you” literally translates to “Watch your back because I can’t be trusted as far as I can be thrown, so I am gathering up all the information I can to smear you, back-stab you and WOUND you so you learn to fear my wrath!”
3. “You love me, and you know it” translates to “You WILL forgo any and all of your needs and bend to my will and ALL of MY needs.”
4. “Trust me” means “Tell me what I want to know so I can use it to get what I want as well as use it against you when I have to.”
5. “You are the love of my life,” translates into “You are just the next one of a long list or sequence of targets/victims that will be used and abused.”
6. “Mutual monogamy or fidelity” means “you WILL be faithful to me while I cheat on you.”
7. “Betrayal” in the Narcissist’s mind is defined and justified with this – “How dare you disapprove of something/anything I did or said. You broke MY laws, didn’t follow my rules and you disobeyed ME. I will show you what happens, AND you must and will be punished.”
8. “Mutual commitment” translates into “Everything in your life revolves around me and me alone, BUT I will do exactly what I want.”
9. “Honesty” never means the truth “It is the Narcissist saying whatever words I need to say to get me what I want at the moment.”
10. “I miss you SO MUCH” means “I miss the function you play in my life as supply, but there are plenty of other objects I can play with when I need MORE and better supply.
11. “I love you like no other, we ARE soul mates” means “I’ll give you attention, flattery, gifts, and ‘love bomb’ you to death only until I hook you emotionally and gain your trust so I can extort everything I can from you and your life, and then I am out of here.”
12. For the extra supply on the side that the Narcissist has – “My wife/husband/girlfriend/boyfriend doesn’t really love me or satisfy me” really interprets to ‘Neither will you, in a few weeks or months, at most and I will toss you aside too.”
13. “We are MEANT to be together forever” means “ABIDE by my rules because I own you completely while I remain free to do as I please.”
14. “We can and will work this out.” means “But it is NEVER my fault. If I did something you believe is harmful, you are over-reacting OR it’s because your services weren’t good enough for me.”
Knowledge is power in understanding that at the basis of their personality disorder they are deceptive and abusive. We are just the objects that they use, abuse and then discard when we have served a particular purpose in their lives. That is all there is to it – people and things are used to fill in the blanks in their lives and there are many blanks. Unfortunately, they will always introduce chaos into the mix, as well as devaluing their objects once they are done with them. To many of us we felt a bond or even love, and we believed in them. When we learn the truth it is traumatizing to say the least and that is why we are here trying to organize our thoughts around all of this, as well as our heart and soul to accept this horrible truth and move forward to a healthy life again and learning how to trust. You, me and all of us can do this because we are amazing and cohesive beings that can overcome anything when we try. If you can take one thing with you today just know that you were not a fool to believe in them, or defective in some manner – you did NOT want abuse nor allow it – you were managed down into what became a desperate love and manipulated/brainwashed into a very unhealthy lifestyle – this was emotional/psychological abuse. Believe in yourself now more than ever! Greg
It is NOT you and NEVER has been you!
Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with a Narcissist
Toxic people are abusers pure and simple. They emotionally and psychologically condition their targets and victims into believing that THEIR abusive behaviors aren’t the problem but instead how YOU react to them – let’s call it ‘bait and switch conditioning.’ We are TOO sensitive, over-reacting, creating problems, and many other things that point right back to us as having issues. THEY are serial provokers that consistently create this same scenario – and AGAIN to condition their victim into believing THEY ARE THE PROBLEM through intentionally creating these chaotic scenarios. This robs the victim of their ability to reason with any sense of reality that NONE of this is about them – but instead about a personality disordered person. Remember this all started out with that intense Charm that made us BELIEVE we were so special – but slowly but surely that all turned around and now we are nothing but a PROBLEM. We care so we want to fix this, change OURSELVES to make things right but it won’t ever happen because this is just the devaluation stage that is laced with that negative conditioning and part of the Narcissist’s agenda.
Over time this completely breaks the target/victim DOWN, destroys their worth, changes their persona, and the way they view themselves and the world. This allows the Narcissist to basically get away with murder — well murdering the mind and soul of their target/victim. It is power and control – the very things an abuser uses/needs to manipulate people into their orbit. Often times the victim BELIEVES that they are the problem and accept their role. The abuse reaches fruition because the constant blaming or shaming has completely erased or reconditioned the victim into believing they ARE that the issue is with THEM. It is just like a predator in nature chasing its prey until it no longer has any fight left in it and succumbs to the attack — but with this abuse it is a direct and consistent attack to the victims emotional and psychological well-being.
These attacks and messages from the abuser imprint themselves on the victim to the point it traumatizes their entire life and can live within them for MANY years. It creates fear, anxiety, depression, isolation, lack of trusting themselves or other people, and the ability to function normally in life – in other words they wear the label their abuser gave them and some even believe that THEY are the abuser and not just the problem as the Narcissist WANTS them to believe.
This is especially true with children that were raised with a Narcissistic parent (the scapegoat child) as well as spouses and partners that were in long-term relations with a Narcissist. Nobody is ever the wiser concerning the abuser because the blame has been placed squarely on the victim – who even actualizes that it WAS their fault. The abuser walks away and moves onto their next victim and starts the entire process again – or taking them from Charm to Harm.
This abuse is NEVER a simple fix or something someone can JUST GET OVER. It has traumatized a life – the life of the target/victim. Our voices are important and we must speak out about this. We must also educate ourselves so that we understand what happened and then use that to get introspection to dig deep down inside of us to destroy those abuse messages that were imprinted on our hearts and minds. WE must also reach out to other victims to help lift them back up too. Recovery is about US and not the Narcissist – our energy needs to be put into recovery so that we can join life as a whole person. We deserve that and more. Greg
There is NEVER a reality-based conversation with a Narcissist – but there is diversion, lies, word salads, double-standards – or basically control to keep us on the other side of the truth and explaining OURSELVES always! Narcissists want us to react to everything!
From my Book: Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with a Narcissist
A little example to explain what it is like just having a NORMAL conversation with a Narcissist – yet alone any fact-based conversations! If you say the sky is blue the Narcissist will somehow negate the possibility of it being blue to make you wrong. The Narcissist may even hint that you have certain psychological issues concerning your thoughts about the sky being blue. The Narcissist will back it up with concerns that your friends, family, or associates have over your ‘wild allegations’ of the sky being BLUE. Then the Narcissist will accuse you of having an affair and using your story of the ‘blue sky’ as a diversion tactic to trick THEM. Finally, that Narcissist will employ punishment and the silent treatment because of your argumentative views, lies and betrayal concerning your ‘blue sky’ story. The Narcissist then runs out to find a little extra supply on the side to betray you since they now have some ‘free time’ after the chaotic and wild ‘blue sky’ story. After a day or so they WILL come back and tell you that IN FACT the sky is blue as if the issue over the blue sky never even came up at all, and you may even get flowers, or dinner, BUT you end up paying for them as usual! OH – and they will tell you that they were taking care of a sick relative and that is why you didn’t hear from them for that day or so that they disappeared. Do we call this denial on the Narcissist’s part that they are just this delusional or are they just denying us access to them using all of these crazy and chaotic’ diversions that deflect us away from the truth about them, so they can get away with everything and anything? I would say ALL of the above! All because we mentioned the sky was blue – but NEVER expect them to agree unless there is something in it for THEM.
So, the reality – the Narcissist will throw a pathological spin onto communication to divert reality and cause chaos so it fulfills whatever the Narcissist’s agenda is at the moment. This agenda is many things, but basically to get their way through controlling everything. It is all done to support their false mask/persona and avoid the truth about who and what they are AND to keep us off-balance and confused. It took me a while to understand just how this worked because I was always in this fog and walking on those eggshells. In my personal experience the Narcissist would divert from every aspect of their life/lifestyle – everything was always a mystery as far as the past and present. Let me put it this way – everything was MEANT to be kept this way so I would never learn the truth about this Narcissist’s abusive past, out-of-control lifestyle, as well as a perverted lifestyle. Any time I would speak to this Narcissist’s mother I would find out about something that this Narcissist had lied about, AND I DIDN’T EVEN HAVE TO ASK because the truth just always seemed to come out on its own. So, you can imagine just how much this Narcissist was lying, re-writing history and every other little diabolical action. I was always kept at a distance from the Narcissist’s family and friends, but of course told that I never made an attempt to get to know them. They have an answer to everything – again always diverting from reality to keep us at arm’s length from the truth or in a constant state of confusion/chaos.
Their agenda ALWAYS includes manipulating/punishing the target/victim into believing that anything bad or wrong they have been questioning concerning the Narcissist was all our overactive imagination and basically we are confused, have issues, jealous or paranoid and this is why they have to get away from us. We stress them out AND they are concerned how we are showing signs or issues around our INABILITY to see reality as it concerns them being saintly, moral, good, or basically perfect. Remember it is the Narcissist re-writing history and lying behind that mask, so beyond the pathological and cowardly aspect of that betrayal process, the Narcissist wants to get the most out of their manipulation skills by trying to make us believe we DO HAVE ISSUES around our own mental stability too – it’s all for the ‘their cause’ that protects their disordered and perverted lifestyle they live and we SUPPORT. No/minimal contact to end the cycle of this debilitating and destructive abuse. Knowledge is power, so we gain the clarity to move forward. Greg
We are ONLY as valuable as what WE can provide to a Narcissist – and we ALL have an expiration date with them once our usefulness is gone.
The most important thing we can internalize to move forward is that a Narcissist CANNOT love, they do not KNOW love, do not WANT love, and they do not bond with anyone in any sort of relationship. What they WANT is to control people to fulfill many needs in every area of their life. What they DO is pretend to know love, know emotions, know caring – but that is only the façade they wear to bring their agenda to fruition. If you do NOT supply them with what they WANT – you are considered worthless. They only WANT what they WANT – what you want and need is only a CONSIDERATION when they are setting the trap to pull you into deception and make you part of their supply chain!
In the overall design of things, misfortune to others does not matter to the Narcissist when they have objectified a human being to obtain their drug of choice or “supply.” It is solely based on what a person has to offer, or what can be taken from this person, and this must resonate in the Narcissist’s grand scheme of things. The Narcissist is convinced of their uniqueness (omnipotence) and basically we are there to serve their needs – they are delusional in this manner. There are no written laws that the Narcissist will comply with when it comes to how they treat other people.
There are no human rights involved either, basically we are there for their use and they completely exploit everything they can from us – mentally and physically. They feel no remorse in their acts of deviance to secure supply in the least bit. Lies, betrayal, manipulation, etc., are only tools to extract what they need before they move on to the next and the next and the next. They have perfected and honed these tools to work to their utmost advantage to meet their needs in EVERY situation.
In the Narcissists grand scheme of things there is never a relationship with any one person as it concerns love, growth, goals, friendship, family bonding, dreams, togetherness AND equal rights where any person ever has a separate identity OR meaning to the Narcissist – EVERYONE IS JUST AN OBJECT. Everything and everyone is just an opportunity for extorting supply. Everyone is a “people object” in their world and our connection is nothing more or nothing less than the next person’s. No/minimal contact! Greg