The Portentous Remarks of the Narcissist




It is well known that our kind operate by the wearing of masks. We have learned how to portray those emotions which we do not feel. We have ascertained that in certain situations we are expected to respond in a particular way. We know that by donning a particular mask we are more likely to charm and seduce you. We are aware that maintaining a certain mask the vicious malevolence that lurks beneath can be kept in check so that we achieve acceptability and the advancement of our agendas. There are occasions when we will give you a glimpse of what lies beneath this mask. I am not referring to when we whip the mask off and subject you to devaluation. That is a purposeful and intended act on our part. I am not making reference to when the mask fractures as a consequence of the ignition of our fury and the lesser and mid-range of our kind are unable to keep the mask in place so that the ignited fury erupts and the malicious beast is unleashed. There are occasions however when we provide you with a fleeting glance beneath the mask as to what lies beneath. This will happen during the seduction period. Sometimes it is as a consequence of the effect of a particular agent, such as alcohol. Sometimes, especially with the greater of our kind, it is done as deliberate act in order to gauge your reaction. In such an instance, we tell you of what lies ahead to see if you baulk at the suggestion, or that more likely you respond in a sympathetic manner or even by way of denial.

“I couldn’t ever imagine you doing that.”

“That won’t happen with me though. It might have with other people but I will treat you better than they have.”

“You’re not like that, don’t be silly.”

“I don’t see you doing something like that, you are too nice.”

If you respond in such terms when you have been given such a warning, then this is a green light to us that we have you under our control and that you will accord with our desires and machinations. It also allows us, when we do eventually behave in the manner described down the line during the devaluation, to throw it back in your face by saying.

“I did warn you.”

“Why are you complaining? I was upfront that this would happen.”

“I told you so.”

“It’s no use crying about it now. I told you what I was like.”

“I told you and you chose to stay with me. It is your fault.”

Not only does this enable us to avoid blame, something we must achieve, it will also result in you reacting and providing us with fuel.

With the lesser or mid-range of our kind, these comments are more akin to thinking aloud. The mask does slip, unintentionally for a moment, through the explanation of a future behaviour before it is realised what has been said and the disclosure is brushed to one side, denied or passed off as a silly comment owing to drink or being tired. Why do these comments arise in such a manner from the lesser and mid-range of our kind? Is it guilt or remorse? No, because those emotions are not felt by our kind. It arises from a lack of control. The “bad” behaviour that will arise at some point is lurking beneath the surface and like a cat fighting to get out of a sack, it is always wanting to make an appearance but is prevented from doing so by the maintenance of the mask that is worn. Occasionally, through the loss of control – it may be drink, it may be fatigue, it may be through inattention – what lurks beneath makes a brief and fleeting appearance before the control is exerted once again. Here are fifteen portentous show and tells of our kind. Should you ever hear these comments you ought to pay heed to the warning that you are being given.

  1. I am a bad person really.
  2. I will only hurt you.
  3. You should stay away from me.
  4. I do bad things. I cannot help it. I always do.
  5. I will make you wish you had never met me.
  6. It will go wrong, it always does.
  7. You will end up hating me.
  8. You don’t know what you are getting into with me.
  9. You shouldn’t do this.
  10. You should leave while you can.
  11. This is going to turn out badly.
  12. I have to hurt people.
  13. I don’t want to hurt you, but I will.
  14. I just want to fit in.
  15. I’m not what you think I am.

48 thoughts on “The Portentous Remarks of the Narcissist

  1. littlebit says:

    Hi guys,
    I’ve been lurking and reading the site and books for a while. I’ve been Narc fuel all my life, dad is malignant higher, ex husband is a middle, I then ran into the arms (and bed!) of another middle. Thankfully I met a woman who explained the narc-empath dynamic and shared links to information with me. That middle treated me so badly so quickly I managed to get away from him. Still dealing with dad and husband.
    I have a question: I’ve now met this amazing guy, it’s really intense, the sex is amazing, and I’ve fallen in love with him deeply and quickly. It’s a long distance relationship so we don’t have much time together. He talks about how when we’re together, there’s nobody else in the world, he’s never met anyone like me, the combination of intelligence, childlike enthusiasm and intense sexuality, it’s amazing to be able to have the sort of sex he’s always wanted (I’m sub, he put his belt around my neck the 2nd time we slept together with no prior discussion, which disturbed me and I insisted on setting limits, safe word etc a few days later). he doesn’t want me to come to his house and he says we are exclusive but I am not his girlfriend as he can’t give me that sort of commitment.
    I’m aware of how it all sounds, believe me! But when his marriage ended he sold everything and moved to New Zealand as he couldn’t cope, and he says he never wants to go through that darkness again. But I’ve already told him I never want to live with anyone again, and I think separate houses and seeing each other a couple of times a week would be the ideal for me. I suspect nobody in his real life knows I exist. But he messages me all through the day and we have a long message conversation every night (not sexting btw) and when we’re together I feel like his goddess. I’ve never felt anything as intense as it is between us, but I’m seeing red flags while learning about narcs and I’m worried he’s one too. Yet I don’t want to judge him unfairly – I seem to be seeing narcs everywhere at the moment! And to be honest I can’t face the thought of life without him – after knowing him for only 3 months. He says I deserve so much more than he can offer me, that he can’t give me what I need, he’s not good enough for me etc.
    My question is – and I think I already know the answer – HG, does he sound like a narc or am I paranoid?
    (Apologies for the long post)

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I would need more information through a consultation to give you a definitive answer, but from what you have described there are many red flags there already and it is highly likely that he is a narcissist. It is also clear that your Window of Evasion is nearly at a close, based on your own comments and you are at considerable risk of your emotional thinking keeping you in place and causing you considerable misery down the line.

      1. littlebit says:

        Thanks, HG, that’s what I suspected. I’ve already tried to end it twice! But the emptiness I felt in those few days of NC was like hell. And this guy is the one person in my life at the moment who makes me feel good. Father Narc has disowned me again, Ex Narc is bitterly complaining that I’ve betrayed my wedding vows by dumping him when he’s so ill – he left me 2 years ago when I was having tests to check I didn’t have a brain tumour (I didn’t, thankfully). Hoovered, apart-but-together, everything on his terms, of course. It’s a different set of rules now I’m the one who’s ended it!
        I’ve set a deadline with new guy for me staying at his house. If it’s just commitment phobia, then working towards it in little steps beforehand (such as getting him to organise a space for my stuff, etc) should help. If this doesn’t make a difference to the status quo he’s likely already with someone and I’m a dirty little secret. And I will end it. I’ve dumped 2 Narcs this year, I can dump him too, in March, if I don’t get what I want! Well, that’s what I tell myself so I can keep on seeing him😞

  2. Jude the Obscure says:

    This article reminds me of something. During The Golden Period, the narcissist that I was entangled with made a video of herself sitting on her couch with a stack of Filofax day planners. Going back over 25 years, she recounted in chronological order, the stories of each one – how at that particular time in her life it was the perfect Filofax but eventually it was no longer useful so she replaced it with the next one. On and on, each one perfect for a time in every way, until it wasn’t any longer, only to be cast aside in favour of a new one. But she’d kept them all.

    As I watched the video, I had this ominous feeling that these Filofaxes represented the various men in her life and I told her as much. I said, “I feel like I’m the new Filofax in your life and right now I’m perfect but someday you’re going to replace me.” She laughed it off and promised that would never happen.

    Thinking back on it now, in light of what eventually would transpire between us, makes me shudder but it also shows me how perceptive my powers of intuition (which I repeatedly ignored during my 3.5 year entanglement with her) really are.

  3. Super Empath says:

    This particular post saddens me.

    CP’s mention of Elton John spurred me over to read the lyrics, listen to the song and then I watched the documentary he allowed his partner to make.

    It’s sad because, he and people of his kind, have so much — yet absolutely nothing. Constantly clamoring around to fill all the voids.


  4. Nuit Étoilée says:

    Thank you, HG for posting the very article many of us needed.

    …such an attentive gesture..

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I’m all heart as you know!

      1. Not So Sad says:

        Of course you are HG 🙂

        Now back to reality ..

        I’ll swap swap you some extra positive feedback for you’re site if you answer me a question .. ‘Quid pro quo’?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Don’t be cheeky! You have my interest….

  5. Sophia says:

    I remember this happening in the beginning about a month into our relationship and not long after we started seeing each other again after we had been apart for a few months.

    Is this a test to get us to go away or to stay? Is this done when there is someone else? Or just literally a slip up because they are truly aware of how things will go down? I thought that lessers and mid rangers aren’t aware of their instinctual dysfunctional behaviors or what they truly are.

    My MMRN said, “I think I’m a sociopath.” I laughed and said, “I do think you have traits of narcissistic personality disorder but you’re far from a sociopath. Why on earth would you think that?” He went on to discuss his “dead inside feeling” and of course I stroked his fragile ball-less ego.

    He used many of the lines on that list. It’s amazing to me how we just blow past these comments that we know we’d would never say. And we wouldn’t for a reason!

    How many women do you think hear what is said and decide to get the f out of dodge?

    One of his favorite lines, “A normal healthy person wouldn’t stick around after they heard, experienced or knew x, y, and z.”

    1. gabbanzobean says:

      Mine used to say that he thought he was a sociopath all the time. But then it was “but I feel remorse and guilt so I cannot be a sociopath. perhaps I am just a womanizer or a sex addict since sexuality is my vice”. You are not alone, those comments whipped right past me too. Mine did not say “dead inside” but he said that he felt withdrawn, depressed, etc. all the time. Probably a similar feeling just describing it in a different way. HG says they do not know what they are and they make these excuses for their behavior. The “tortured soul” pity.

      1. HG Tudor says:


  6. Daniela says:

    HG, Walter Keane in a movie called “Big Eyes” on Netflix is a narcissist yet he is only described as a fraud in the movie. Thanks to you (and my MR ex) I was able to pick up on what Walter really was. If you haven’t seen the movie you should watch it to see how Walter is depicted. The whole time I watched it I was counting the red flags.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Good work Daniela.

    2. Blank says:

      OMG I was looking this up and found this interview.
      I see narcs everywhere now, all day, everywhere.. That’s probably why I am addicted to this site, which I wanted to leave a week ago. Still hooked up with a narc here. I hate myself.

      1. HG Tudor says:

        This a better addiction to have, Blank.

      2. Nuit Étoilée says:

        I have totally replaced one addiction for this – I try to see it as a stepping stone to the escape path of freedom.

        HG, are you engendering addiction in your followers on purpose?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          No, it is there to begin with.

  7. He used to tell me “I just want to fit in.” but I said that ,too! Thinking back, we were both very social creatures, but in different ways. I thought that an odd thing for him to say, because everybody just seemed to automatically like him, a ‘hale fellow well met’ type of guy most of the time, at first.
    I do remember one time when he seemed happy, was hugging me and kind of rocking side to side, he did say,out of left field, in a happy voice, “I NEVER want to hurt YOU!” When I lean back to look up at him, he seemed to have a look of adoration on his face, so I let it pass……..
    I don’t know if this counts, but the first disturbing thing that should have raised a red flag, was after our first blow out, about what I thought was his jealousy, I returned to the apartment after storming out to get my purse.
    He was crying tears, but no sobs, no congestion, no expression really. In a flat voice he said, “You’ll leave me. Everybody always leaves me.”
    I just thought that came from being left at a hospital between ages 1 and 2, no human touch or talk except medical treatment.
    But he seemed so normal, otherwise, and said he had ended up in a better family because of being left at the hospital.

    1. Sophia says:

      I’ve known a few people who were adopted. I wondered if they had a genetic predisposition to narcissism because they were bad eggs. I feel sorry for the parents that adopt into a nightmare. You have to wonder what the biological parents are like when you know the adopted person is nothing like their functional loving parents.
      How did he speak of his adopted family?

      1. He was a birthday present to his adoptive mother when he was 2 years old. He was the golden child and could do no wrong in her eyes. He had a hatred for his bio mom and would have nothing to do with her. His adoptive mother to him was a perfect mom, in spite of his sneering disgust of her religiosity. He wouldn’t make the cruel remarks to her face, but would make mocking remarks about the literature she sent to him, and would ignore her questions of whether he had gone to church or not.
        I found out about his criminal acts AFTER we were married. His Mom used her wealth and social influence to shield him from responsibility for his actions. The father was a former baptist minister who gave him his own motorboat at age 5, which the older siblings were not allowed to use unless he invited them to come along.
        And he was not actually adopted, the state gov’t didn’t allow older couples to adopt back then, but continuous foster care was encouraged.

      2. I forgot to add that I believe 2 of his brothers were/are lessers.

  8. Tappan Zee says:

    I’m not what you think I am.

    ^ you’re exactly what i KNOW now.

  9. One said to me “I’m going to destroy you.” and he said it in a caring way which made me say “That’s not true!” He was my pastor. What is it with these narcissists using God as a means of getting what they want? The absolute worst!! That was 34 years ago.

  10. CP says:

    During the seduction period he told me to be careful what I wished for. I can remember thinking ‘You can’t be that bad! He used lots of Song Lyrics throughout his engagement with me as clues the relevant one here is Rocket Man by Elton John I’m not the man they think I am at home. Part of testing me as well..

  11. BlueOcean says:

    The most poignant one I heard from him, me being his IPSS (‘unsure’ though if second is the appropriate number since he had def more than one intimate source next to his primary one) was when he was talking about his former work in finance/private equity, from where he had finished, it became clear that it was not so straightforward what had happened, but I tried to console and said that maybe he could come back later to which he replied; ‘I would have to kill someone then’. The manner in which he spoke was with such intense anger and definitely not in a joke or with a twist or anything like it, and I was really terrified. I said; ‘But SURELY you are not going to kill anyone, NAME, come on’. His response was not at all convincing.

  12. SuperXena says:

    Yes….the Greater always testing. That resonates a lot with me.
    I would like to add one more I heard a lot: “I will be your worst nightmare”

    1. SuperXena says:

      And one more: ” You have no idea who you are dealing with”..

      1. Patricia J says:

        And one more…”You have no ideal what I am capable of”

        1. SuperXena says:

          Yes Patricia J..and the list is long. I had actually suppressed all of these statements..they are part of the past for me now but a good reinforcing reminder..

  13. Becky says:

    Once one said to me, “You’ll never get out of this.” At the time, I thought nothing of it other than it being an odd and intense thing to say. …But he was very intense. I certainly didn’t think he was serious until when I wanted out found myself unable to get away from him. I had to close 2 emails, delete my Facebook, change my number (which he got). He would show up at my apartment, call my work phone. I still hear from him on occasion, but rarely now that he’s got a gf. Thank God for that!

  14. gabbanzobean says:

    I heard #1 once, a looooong time ago, at the very beginning. “I am a scum bag, Gabrielle”. “No you’re not”. “Okay fine. I am a RECOVERING scumbag”. Recovering (eye roll).

    I think #15 is crowned the winner as I heard that about 5 times during last week’s “corrective devaluation” (just read my emails, thank you HG).

    I have a question re: #9….”You shouldn’t do this”….would, “Are you sure you want to do this?” qualify as something similar? I recall him asking me that once or twice before we’d meet up.

    1. Sophia says:

      I think it does. My MMRN used those as well. He even followed up with disclaimers such as, “I can’t give you…I’m not sure if I know how to love…Are you sure you’re doing this for you and not me?

      I have enjoyed my audio consultations with HG and my emails were very helpful. I’ve learned so much more than just decoding his MRN bullshit. I’m glad it’s all lead me here.

      Though, I gotta say, I’m to the point where I can’t believe I’ve invested so much time trying to figure him out and find redeeming qualities. They are very few and far between. You’re going to feel the same, I imagine.

      The best way to get over someone is to get under someone else, they say. 😉

      1. HG Tudor says:

        Indeed Sophia although the risk is you will slide under another one of us, so stay frosty.

        1. gabbanzobean says:

          Frosty!! That is a new one. Great word!

      2. gabbanzobean says:

        “The best way to get over someone is to get under someone else, they say. 😉”

        Yup!!!! I was given this advice (by someone who means well but has no clue how I am feeling)… This would be the ultimate distraction. Some hot random action with some random lucky person.

        I keep hearing Mr Churchy Piano recital’s words….”Surely you must know you can have sex with someone without loving them”….

        Yes I know that. But could I actually do that? Hey if he can why can’t I? I am far less of a whore than he is. I’ve been with 2 people (including him). He’s been with 40. So why shouldn’t I “up” my number?

        I will need alcohol though. Lots of it. LOL.

      3. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:

        Which is why I’ve been a plant lol.

    2. Nuit Étoilée says:

      Ahh the corrective devaluation. I got those too. He would pronounce that I needed to go think about whatever it was he wanted and come back when I’d come to the right conclusion – to behave as he wanted.

      Trouble is, I’m stubborn.

      I hope you are on your way to recovery from.the scumbag now.

      1. gabbanzobean says:

        I was so convinced it was a disengagement. I am stubborn too.
        I am trying. One day at a time. Were you a DLS too?

      2. Nuit Étoilée says:

        Oh yes… I was a DLS.. although we only saw each other rarely so I didn’t even warrant much effort… (glad for that now)

        I hoped it was a disengagement too..

        Nope, back to acting as if nothing happened.

        Stay stubborn. Put it to finding how you want to be treated, & stick to that.

  15. geyserempath says:

    and the one I heard “I am set in my ways” other words, take it or leave it.

  16. Windstorm2 says:

    I love the expression “ like a cat trying to get out of a sack.” I have vivid mental images of that. When my exhusband and his brothers were young, they did all kinds of cat abuse. Sort of like experiments or tests of bravery. I can remember them having competitions on who could hold a cat trapped in a pillowcase the longest before letting go. It’s really amazing how hard a cat will fight when trapped in a pillow case.

    My exhusband said many things along the lines of your list, but he would always accompany them with a smile. Since I always knew what he was, he wasn’t trying to trick me or certainly not saying them by accident. More just stating facts. He still will make these pronouncements that surprise me, like confessing to being a sociopath when asked, answering “no, he doesn’t believe justice exists” when he is a county prosecutor. He has become more and more open with me about what he really thinks and feels over the years.

    1. I don’t see how you can “love that expression.”
      I hate hearing of animal abuse. Disgusting!

      1. Windstorm2 says:

        I am very opposed to animal abuse also. Perhaps I love it because it brings such vivid images to my mind. And that it is such a surprisingly violent thing, much more than you would imagine – and I don’t mean violence to the cat. Believe me the cat gives better than he gets. Anyone stupid enough to try to hold a cat in a sack will end up in much worse shape than the cat. That in itself is inspiring. A person may set out to victimize and abuse a cat, but he will nearly always end up worse off than the cat. The proposed victim triumphs over his abuser.

        Also maybe it’s allure is in its novelty. I’m also partial to “sharp as a bag of wet mice.” There’s another novel mental image.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Are you suggesting WS2 that a cat would best a person or is just a phrase?

          1. Windstorm2 says:

            If the person was trying to kill the cat, then of course the cat would lose. What I meant was if a person is trying to hold a cat in a pillow case, the cats claws come right through the pillow case and claw the fire out of the person. Usually when this happens, they loosen their grip on the pillowcase, the cat comes out fiery mad, frightened – ripping and biting the person who was holding the bag.

            Unless maybe you were just asking a rhetorical question….,

            I can remember my oldest brother in law having a fit at how unfair it was if you didn’t draw to go first, because the cat would be so much angrier for subsequent times. Any wonder he’s a midranger?

            It truly is an activity for idiot teenage narcs.

          2. HG Tudor says:

            I understand, thank you for explaining.

      2. BlueOcean says:

        Yes and I don’t see either any ‘amazing part’ in seeing ‘how hard a cat will fight when trapped in a pillow case’. Seems sadistic to admire such things, regardless of how one tries to justify that? There seems to be really no amazing part in that. It can perhaps be interpreted as some manifestation of hatred of the abuser but that will neither benefit the manipulated/the abused, to have that kind of feeling. It is simply despicable to abuse innocent animals.

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