The False Exaggeration of the Victim



We would struggle without those twin helpers of exaggeration and embellishment as we make our mediocre achievements impressive and our decent accomplishments spectacular. Good for all occasions, a healthy and liberal sprinkling of exaggeration makes us far more appealing and alluring. Embellishing what I have done ensures I look far better than you and means that I remain the superior individual. Like salt and pepper at meal times, exaggeration and embellishment are never far from our kind. We make everything bigger, better, bolder, brighter and more brilliant. We love to magnify and multiply in order to convey just how great we are, yet, generous souls that our kind are it would not be fair if we did not allow you an opportunity to be seen to exaggerate and embellish, to make a mountain out of a mole hill and blow things out of proportion. Of course, when we provide this opportunity to you, it has none of the self-aggrandizing effects of our behaviour for ourselves but it used as an opportunity to make you see hysterical, unreliable and someone who is trying to pin the blame on us unfairly. We use exaggeration to inflate what we are but also as a means of attacking you. Here are twenty examples of using exaggeration and embellishment to undermine you.

  1. You are hypersensitive
  2. You are over-thinking what has happened
  3. You read too much into what I say
  4. You are paranoid
  5. You are seeing things which are not there
  6. You are making that up
  7. You have to be melodramatic don’t you?
  8. You aren’t that ill really.
  9. You are over-reacting.
  10. You are making a fuss over nothing.
  11. You have lost your sense of perspective.
  12. You take things too far at times
  13. You are going over the top with this now
  14. You press the panic button too soon
  15. You are making something out of nothing
  16. You are responding in a disproportionate manner
  17. You are getting over excited about this
  18. You are losing your sense of proportion
  19. You are putting two and two together and making eight
  20. You are jumping to conclusions


When you hear these comments being made by us, you should become aware that we are using such a comment to deflect what you are saying by trying to trivialise it by suggesting you are exaggerating its effect or importance. The use of phrases such as these are stock tells by us that you have landed a blow against us and we need to reduce its impact promptly. The easiest way to do this is to not only diminish the import of what you have said but then to make you question your own behaviour by making the conversation about you, rather than us. This will also provoke you by frustrating you. You are being denied the opportunity to advance your agenda and this will increase your emotional response. This not only gives us fuel, it also means that you lose sight of your point as you are derailed by conducting the discussion in a logical fashion as you are pushed by us into the territory of emotion. Once emotion has taken hold of your thinking we are far abler to exploit this to our advantage. Recognise these comments and understand their significance when you are engaging with our kind so you are able to withdraw from or neutralise their effect.

11 thoughts on “The False Exaggeration of the Victim

  1. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD says:

    They all irritate me because they are all ridiculous. If anyone says any of these lines to me now I mentally clock out.

  2. gabbanzobean says:

    I lost time of the number of times my Narc told me I was overthinking.

    1. jenna says:

      Same gabbybean!

    2. Mary says:


      Same here. Looking back, I think just about any guy in my past who said I was overthinking… what he really meant was “stop asking questions and just do what I want.” More specifically, “stop asking questions and fuck me.” We have to understand that the reason we are overthinking so much in the first place is because their behavior is shady and doesn’t match their words.

      1. gabbanzobean says:

        So how do I filter this out from future narcs or even regular people?! If someone says I’m overthinking it doesn’t mean they’re a narc. How do I filter the bullshit? How do I even move on? 😕

        1. Windstorm2 says:

          Just my two cents worth…but I say first you decide just who you are as a person, what you value and what type of treatment you are willing to tolerate from others. Then just stick to that and don’t put up with being put down by anyone – narc or not.
          That way you don’t have to try to sort any bullshit.

      2. Mary says:


        I struggle with that too. Windstorm’s advice is very good. Narc or not, if they treat us like crap, we can do so much better! I think as we learn to value and respect ourselves more fully, we will have a better trust in our gut feelings that someone doesn’t mean us well.

        I’m even thinking, if I was wrong about my guy and he wasn’t a narc (highly unlikely lol), then it was still good to walk away because of the effect that relationship had on me. It had it’s pleasures, but it was destroying me from the inside out. I never slept. I started to actually look like a drug addict due to lack of sleep.

        The only difference is, if my guy wasn’t a narc and it was all me obsessing, and nothing he was doing… I should have just said goodbye and not gone “poof.”

  3. NarcRecoveryGal says:

    21. why are you so angry?

    1. nomorenarcs says:


      Got that one a few months back from my ex-narc. I couldn’t believe he was a.) that stupid; and b.) that flagrantly in denial of all that he had done to merit my anger/hatred toward him. Will wonders never cease?!?!

  4. DebbieWolf says:

    Thank you HG.
    I recognise these. Will be more aware of these as a tactic and avoid taking it personally to feed self doubt.
    It’s a relief really, reading this.

  5. Windstorm2 says:

    If I could go back and change any one thing from my childhood, I think it would be to understand this for the lying deflection that it is. All those years growing uphearing these comments (and me being a natural truth teller), I just accepted that they were all true and I was crazy. For some reason, God had made me defective. After all, Why would my mother say these horrible comments to me if they were not true? Even as I grew older and began to doubt, I could never be sure they weren’t true. A large part of me deep down still believes these lies.

    Now on a more humorous note, my favorite author, Mark Twain, said something my father and then my husband love to quote when caught out in one of those many, everyday narc embellishments-
    “Another good story, ruined by a damned eyewitness!”

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