When the Narcissist says “I love you!”
The Narcissist: I love you!
The truth and definition behind these three words: I am in my manipulative validation mode because I want you to BELIEVE that I love you so that you will trust me, become vulnerable, tell me secrets that I can use against you, and once I have gathered all the information I need I will use it to control you, hurt you, betray you in every way I can because I need more than just you. I will disable you, and EXTORT your love and life! I need you for what ‘you’ people call supply – then as my farewell I am going to hurt you more and probably destroy you so I can find the next person that I can use and abuse and get away with it all! It is as simple as this BUT it will be the worst thing you ever experience in your life but it gets me ‘WHAT I WANT.’ What happens to you through the process is just collateral damage and I don’t care because I am not wired that way – BUT I need what I need, and want what I want, so I go for it! I will project all on my darkness onto and into you as well. You will have to go through a long healing and recovery period after I am gone because I have really messed with your head and with those things you call emotions so have fun with that. I am pretty thorough with my methods so don’t try to mess with me. I have moved on to someone else long before you even knew it and I have many people that will say I am about as near perfect as a person can get. You just don’t get it that I don’t care, and until you do get this you will be stuck with me living on and on in your mind. Oh, and by the way I have waged a ‘smear campaign’ with behind your back and destroyed your integrity. So all those people around you like your friends, family, and co-workers think YOU are crazy and have abused me. It is your fault because you trusted me enough to share sensitive information and I used that against you. One last thing, feel free to contact me as much as you want and I will be glad to fool you more and pull you right back into the abuse!
Seriously this is what a Narcissist would say to us, but they don’t because it would give their game plan away and they would lose out in life! They are predators that have to live among us and with us, so they do this for a reason and that is to benefit from their manipulative actions and hide their abusive nature. They source people out to use or basically harvest what they can from people because they make themselves whole by stealing our life and love away from us because they just can’t survive without us. They are dysfunctional and need us as a component to be functional! They have the advantage because they come into our lives knowing the truth that we are only an object for them to use. They have been using and abusing people all of their lives and are seamless with their game to trap us into this abuse.
Our recovery depends on getting these creatures totally out of our lives and our minds by just accepting what they are. We can’t define ourselves through the actions of these creatures but we can understand what happened, and learn some things about ourselves that made us vulnerable, and move on for our own good. So that BURNING question that everybody asks: “Are Narcissists really aware of their behavior and do they know what they are doing is wrong?”
So to start a little comparison of normal versus the emotionally detached Narcissist! Most normal people don’t put too much thought into their everyday actions and behaviors or basically think about how you behave on a regular basis. This is because there is a moral code, or code of ethics, empathy, emotions, respect and so many other things that are part of a belief system that is in place and guides you (the normal person) through life. Basically this is what drives your behaviors throughout your life. The process also includes an accumulation of our ‘personality traits,’ emotional state, our self-esteem, and our past experiences that are definitely guided by a societal norm that includes morality, laws, doing the right thing, not hurting our fellow human being, etc., etc. Much of this depends upon our upbringing and basic life lessons too. There are times that we act and react and sometimes we get angry and say things that hurt people but we generally resolve these situations – after all we are human and can be hurt, but we also love, feel the pain of others, and many other things that make the human condition unique but good. Let’s just say we have a default setting that is internalized inside of us that keeps us on track.
NOW a Narcissist’s is biological like us and has general default settings in life too. Their default settings consist mostly of dysfunctional and negative emotions such as, anger, being aloof, smugness, frustration, boredom, obsession, addictions, envy and contempt of all people. All of this is born out of an extreme insecurity and lack of a real personality and seriously there are different theories that try to explain this but none of which point to the Narcissist wanting to get help or change. Because these feelings are part of the Narcissist’s everyday experience, their brain (like ours) creates neural pathways, so that when new stimuli (people) come into their world through their mind AND senses, their brain filters the information through these ingrained pathways (just like it does with our mind and senses.) The more we think a certain way, the stronger the neural pathway becomes. Again a Narcissist defaults to their negativity, insecurities, delusions and dysfunctional outlook to process life and people. From there they have created and perfected a facade in a very surface manner to attempt to fit in. So that to me is awareness that they know they are flawed and they have had to learn how to con people to be accepted in our world. BUT they can’t for long because their envy, dysfunction, and hate seeps out and they are totally out of control because they need ‘supply’ so badly.
So when your Narcissist is interpreting his/her environment, they are interpreting it through those filters. When you do something and the Narcissist reacts in a rage, it’s because that neural pathway that leads to anger is well traveled and the Narcissist is constantly interpreting other people’s interactions and intentions as negative and threatening to his/her sense of self. A Narcissist is obsessed with how others perceive them – it is all about protecting their image so lying is a tool and also as normal AND as important to them as breathing. But what goes hand in hand with this is that they do not see the world and people as anything but objects to serve a purpose or supply them with anything and everything they desire. They have shut down all NORMAL reality and replaced it with this self-created and magnanimous façade and use it like a marketing tool to ‘fit in’ and find their next AND next target/victim. BUT they also wear it like a suit of armor in battle to hide their many flaws and if they are made accountable they will attack the very thing they need to survive – people. Their façade is a double edged sword in reality and very flimsy.
ALL people are objectified to serve them because the Narcissist creates an image that is omnipotent and above the laws of mankind but they are very needy and dependent on us. The levels a Narcissist will stoop to achieve this is abusive and derelict. Their life is a huge lie that is wrapped up with a huge bow to look like it is an amazing gift to all man and womankind! They have to process a great deal to keep their dysfunction at bay and protect themselves from exposure always having to look over their shoulder because in time life WILL finally catch up with them and expose them with the truth of what they REALLY are. If they can get away once more they will try, they are very adept at escaping exposure and accountability with more lies. But age will also slow them down as well as KARMA and there will be nobody there for them to abuse for supply and that will destroy them. Let them meet their own future AND destiny.
Because the Narcissist needs to be admired and considered superior, any slight to them, real or imagined, will travel down the loathing and anger paved neural pathway and incite the Narcissist’s rage and fury and this makes them destructive and hateful creatures. Remember underneath the façade is a VERY insecure creature that protects its dark secrets with its life! So in this manner the Narcissist’s behavior has become their habitual way of thinking or pattern AND survival that is protected by that very flimsy mask or façade. They control their targets/victims in every imaginable manner they can to extort what they can and for as long as they can. This is just a natural function and not something the Narcissist thinks about consciously, NOR does the Narcissist care about any of their actions because everything they do is self-serving. All of the lies, manipulation, betrayal, emotional and psychological attacks, etc., are all part of this as well. The Narcissist is not thinking that he/she has overreacted or acted badly with any of their outrageous and negative behavior. The Narcissist is just always looking at how your behavior was offensive to them because in all of this delusional process they have to blame everyone else to achieve a functional cohesiveness in their own minds – again part of that façade to keep themselves from looking inward. Of course the Narcissist is dangerous because of their distorted and dysfunctional personality and disordered world, but this is how they are wired and that is not going to ever change. This also includes the ‘loving’ manipulation they use to hide their extreme flaws and insecurities that pulls or better yet seduces their targets/victims into their darkness. So are they aware – YES! They have to have some sort of cognitive awareness to carry out this well designed plan out and function in our world. They HAVE to have the same things we have but at a magnanimous level since they are an empty void, AND they need 24/7 attention or supply to feed that empty void.
A Narcissist’s life is totally filled with extreme anxiety and they need to alleviate this anxiety – this is what drives most if not all of their behavior. They are one huge walking contradiction with the same desires to have emotional security but they are cut off at the knees because they do not experience emotions, love or human bonding – that is the big contradiction. SO do they know and understand emotions – or use them to abuse? The bottom line is that they are a disaster in ANY relationship! They use humans to reap the benefits that they couldn’t achieve based on their REAL persona! BUT they also have a strong need to be DISTANT at the same time because they don’t fit into the ‘normal’ and the Narcissists knows this and defends themselves fiercely to protect their dark secrets. They do know how to go into battle and will drive you to the point of insanity to protect themselves. Chaos and crazy making are the other bombs they use when they devalue and dehumanize their targets/victims. They really need correctional adult supervision or a full time adult babysitter.
On top of all of this the Narcissist needs to rid themselves of their extreme anxiety through blaming and shaming everybody. Nothing is ever the Narcissist’s fault and they transfer everything onto a target/victim. They use their wild stories about how they are always a victim of a TERRIBLE relationship where they gave their all and had to “run for their lives.’ BUT check out their story closely as far as a timeframe and you will see that they ran right into the arms of another person immediately – nobody does that after ending a relationship. Their actions are purely self-centered and they are driven by these distorted survival techniques. Couple that with the fact that they are COMPLETELY out-of-control trying to always get their fix like an addict so they get always get caught.
The Narcissist derives their sense of self-worth from the people and things in his/her environment, the choices he/she makes and the things he/she does. All of this is created and achieved through the extreme manipulation used to seduce people into the Narcissist’s life that add more of the substance they need to reinforce their façade. Most if not ALL of the time the Narcissist isn’t thinking of anyone else because everything has to support the Narcissist’s survival and ‘game plan’ as well as juggling many sources of supply. The Narcissist has MANY façades to support and fulfill their needs, AND always a spare source of supply to fall back on. The Narcissist is always thinking, ‘how does this make me look,’ or “how does this benefit me!” and of course ‘what can I do to get to what I need.’ They are very adept at observing a potential target/victim and shape shifting to fit exactly or morph into their lifestyle with a well know clinical phrase called ‘love bombing,’ or the door that opens your heart and mind to their world.
Hurting (and destroying) you is ALWAYS the unfortunate repercussion that the Narcissist never even considers, nor does he/she even care that they destroy a person through their manipulation – it is more like a conditioned function. A prime example of this is the Narcissist’s lack of connection to their own biological children when they move on or better yet run away from a spouse or partner because they have been busted. So in these two respects the Narcissist is not totally aware of his/her behavior because they are not wired or they conditioned themselves not to care. BUT the Narcissist is conscious of the deception they use to get what they want, and know when they have to run, so again they just do not care as long as it supports their needs and they don’t look back because they can’t AND they HAVE to have newer supply to survive. So we can say that the Narcissist has basically conditioned themselves to be abusive to get what they want. Narcissists naturally devalue their targets/victims as well by their daily doses of managing them down. Do they know right from wrong? Well the Narcissist will outwardly lie to cover up their deception as well and that is a conscious defense mechanism of theirs and if that doesn’t work and they are threatened with accountability they will rage and apply blame to their target/victim to alleviate any and all responsibility being placed on them to the point of destruction. So in the end it is always your fault and the Narcissist defaults back to their grandiose self through the use of many different tools to avoid accountability and runs away from exposure. It SEEMS like a cognitive function in making these choices.
We all understand that if we want ‘something’ to happen we must do ‘something’ to achieve the desired result and so does the Narcissist. If you look at the manipulative aspect of a Narcissist, YES they are aware that they are manipulating you, just part of the covert operation to seduce you in. So you must believe that when they want something from you, they will tell you what you want hear, or do what they need to do to get what they want, knowing full well that he/she is lying, betraying, as well as the Narcissist has absolutely no intention of delivering on any promises that they made WITHIN the manipulation process. The Narcissist wants ABSOLUTELY everything on THEIR terms and they don’t concern themselves with how you will feel about it OR anything about YOU. You are ONE of MANY opportunities that the Narcissist uses to get everything that they want – but they are seamless with the seduction to get you to give into whatever it is they want and make you think you are their ‘one and only!’
Think about the distorted behavior of a drug addict. They will lie, steal, cheat, and manipulate to get their next fix. They most certainly know what they are doing is wrong, but they don’t care, because THEY NEED THAT NEW FIX. This ‘not caring’ has been going on so long that every time they find themselves in a moral conundrum, it gets easier and easier to justify their behavior. All they concern themselves with is getting their next hit or fix, regardless of the consequences to anyone else. The Narcissist in an amazingly similar fashion does EXACTLY the same thing AND all the Narcissist concerns themselves with is obtaining their much needed supply and this outweighs all other considerations.
Most people are guided by their conscience (and usually with a healthy and good conscience,) and stable/good people govern their actions based on real feelings, healthy morals, compassion and the ability to put themselves in another person’s shoes. But what happens when you don’t have any type of moral compass, or when you lack empathy? When none of that is present what is left? To answer this question you need to know exactly what you are dealing with and the level of their emotional impairment. In this instance and article we are dealing with an emotionally and psychologically abusive Narcissist that is dangerous to people and life in general!
A Narcissist does not have the availability of real emotions or empathy as it concerns people or the human condition/connection – people are only objects to the Narcissist. So if you’ve never experienced or KNOW empathy or good emotions before, how do you know they even exists? Because it doesn’t exist for the Narcissist, they tend to think that when you display or express emotion or empathy, your behavior is a put on and false. Your behavior is just as much of a mystery to them as the Narcissist’s behavior is to you – this is how deeply they delude themselves. The only big difference is that the Narcissist isn’t sitting around thinking about your behavior, he/she is only thinking about themselves. Often times the Narcissist is quite surprised that their behavior has offended you, because your reaction and how it would affect you, never even crossed their mind. Secondly they are not feeling any adverse reactions like you do to the ‘love loss’ because there is no love, no loss to them, no feelings, and again no emotions. The game just goes on with them. But then again how did they get to the point that they can make this comparison if they don’t know emotions or empathy? Again there is a cognitive process going on that drives their conscious mind.
So basically what this amounts to is falling in love (or loving depending upon the relationship) with a zombie that is always after your brain. BUT this zombie is manipulative, shrewd, seductive, and one big lie that will extort whatever they can get from you. This zombie is also very envious of life, angry to the point of rage always boiling at the surface and ready to attack at any real or perceived insult that threatens their fake mask of sanity. So you have a creature with out of control needs, a horrendous temper to protect their insanity toward people and life, a liar, manipulator, and thief, etc., all bundled up in a love story! It is an incredulous and hideous process to have dealt with one of these creatures.
So is a Narcissist aware of their behavior and that what they are doing is wrong? Yes and no. Some of their behaviors are so ingrained in their neural pathways that they’ve become habitual and they usually don’t give it much thought – BUT that doesn’t make it right OR they are unaware of what they do. But when a Narcissist is stalking prey and trying to get what he/she wants AND in the moment that Narcissist is aware of what they are doing. The Narcissist has perfected their attack and knows that they are misleading you, but they just don’t care.
All of us are able to rationalize and justify our actions to some degree, a Narcissist just does it on a grander and very delusional scale. Mainly because they are missing or completely void of integral emotional components that impairs their ability to consider the feelings of others. Because a Narcissist doesn’t consider how their actions will affect you, there isn’t really a right or wrong component included in their decision making process. Since your feelings were never even a tiny consideration to him/her, when the Narcissist hurts you they can easily absolve themselves of any wrong doing, because hurting you wasn’t something they necessarily intended to do, it was just part of the collateral damage to get what they wanted. If you are hurt that is your fault. I remember my Narcissist’s mother saying to me one time that ‘so and so’ (my Narcissist) would lie when they were a child if they did something that would hurt somebodies feelings, because the little Narcissist wanted to protect the feelings of others. No consideration of what the little Narcissist did that was very wrong that hurt the person (accountability,) but somehow there was goodness in lying to cover up the truth. I am sure my eyebrows were raised at the time! Now that the little Narcissist is all grown up and they do it on a magnanimous scale and destroy families. Trickledown effect?
The bottom line is, whether or not a Narcissist is aware their behavior is wrong is just irrelevant as it concerns us. The question you should be asking yourself is, ‘Why am I still involved with a person who displays this destructive Narcissistic behavior?’ ‘What am I getting out of this?’ AND most importantly ‘When am I getting out of this?’ When these ‘what’s and when’s’ appear in our vocabulary it is usually too late because at that point we realize that we have lived in a horrible battle zone called emotional and psychological abuse and the damage is done.
The emotionally unavailable behavior of a Narcissists quite clearly points to the fact that this is a relationship that is totally one-sided. The façade to cover up the Narcissist’s delusional and harmful aspects describes the reality of the destruction and damage they impart onto their targets/victims. They blow hot and cold in their relationships, they’re self-centered, they have an entitlement mentality and they don’t take responsibility for any of their actions AT ALL. They have a difficulty forming attachment bonds with others and tend to have huge emotional walls built because of their disorder that doesn’t allow any real bonding to occur. They can’t even form a real bond with their biological children and can dump them just as easy as anybody else! The Narcissist will fight you tooth and nail to escape from being exposed even if this means completely destroying your integrity and leaving a family behind.
Narcissists have a weak, fragile self-esteem and completely depend on others for validation and their sense of self-worth. Narcissists need to feed off of the admiration and esteem of others, like people need oxygen to breath and water to drink. Without it they withdraw and spiral into a deep depression this is why they form their longer term relationships to assure the availability of 24/7 supply. But they will sneak out and find more sources of supply when they have the opportunity to do so. This need makes them predator-like and willing to say and do whatever’s necessary to obtain another’s affections so they get what they want quickly and seamlessly.
When Narcissists do engage in long term relationships, the most prevalent thing that is missing is a sincere or REAL emotional bond. Many partners, targets/victims of Narcissists have said that they never really could get close to them and therefore never really knew them at all. I for one NEVER really knew my Narcissist at all! Narcissists are not nostalgic about any one person, place, or thing. Nothing seems to hold any deep sentimental value or emotional attachment for them. They compartmentalize everything and everyone as a source of supply, and can have many different supply sources going on at one time (different relationships.) Each source of supply gets their own personalized relationship with a Narcissist because they are so adept at shape shifting to fit exactly into a particular situation that benefits or serves them. They lie, manipulate, con and lack the ability to feel empathy or remorse so they do what they want without a conscience. They have poor impulse control and engage in high risk behavior all the time. Narcissists have a high sense of entitlement and a very smug demeanor of getting what they want and not caring. Their emotions are either nonexistent, or so far off the emotional chart that they don’t even resemble anything near the ‘real’ human connection.
In the end of my connection to the Narcissist I knew, I was totally in shock with the truth as it became apparent to me. I had believed that there was betrayal and lies, but I never knew the extent of this betrayal, and not only to me but to this Narcissist’s previous relationships that included a family and children. This Narcissist lacked morality so much so that if I were to rate it on a scale of 1 to 10 and 10 being an ethical and highly moral/good person, and 1 being low or next to no morals, my Narcissist would be in the minus thousands and more. My Narcissist was/is a derelict that wears an amazing mask, façade and armor. This Narcissist has literally destroyed many people with horrendous lies that I can’t even begin to wrap my head around as to why a person would act out in the manner this Narcissist does. There is so much dysfunction and chaos attached to this Narcissist’s past that virtually extends into every relationship, friendship, family connection, job, involvement in organizations – or basically EVERYTHING. If you would connect the dots in each of these situations there is such a strong pattern that is so apparent especially around derelict sexuality (betrayal) and how this Narcissist has attempted to destroy so many peoples integrity to escape accountability for their lifestyle. It is not in my realm to understand and I don’t want to understand because all I needed was the truth to close the door and I did just that. That is what we MUST do to move forward and heal.
So ask yourself what type of connection would you still want with a Narcissist? Do you want to be their savior and healer, or save yourself to be free again to love and heal from the damage inflicted onto and into you? Think about what you gave and what was given in return. Think about the dark shadows this Narcissist travels to get their fix from life and other human beings. With my Narcissist it was/is sex sites and a constant search for a fix with strangers betraying everybody and anybody, but then the next day this Narcissist will be preaching on a pulpit and hiding behind religion, morality, ethics, etc., and blaming and shaming people for what this Narcissist does and has done.
It is an awful perception and reality when you know you believed as you have been taught to believe in people and love and then find out that your mind was raped by one of these creatures AND they are out there raping someone else’s mind. BUT unfortunately you have to push this aside so that you can recover from this abuse completely or live out your life with the regret of being abused by a Narcissist. You can’t save their next target/victim because they are imprisoned by the same manipulation and abuse that you were. You also have to accept the fact that you MUST protect yourself from this creature pulling you back into the abuse, because once you have wounded them they have a new game plan to destroy whatever they can as it concerns you to avoid exposure. Luckily for me, my Narcissist knows that I know something that can be so completely devastating to their existence and like a coward my Narcissist ran off with only a few minions still praising and supporting this Narcissist – BUT still abusing newer targets and still trying to bury all of abuse inflicted on me and many others. I used my voice and allowed it to grow in a manner to share my experience and it has become very strong and it will keep growing as long as this abuse is still going on. This is their world and one we cannot share any part of, so please internalize this description and picture of what a Narcissist is and release yourself from any blame or shame and accept that they are disordered and not fully functioning human beings and unfortunately you fell into their trap. PLEASE go no/minimal contact and run for your life and never stop to turn around and look back! Forget about everything Narcissist and give yourself the self-compassion you need to heal and move forward! Greg