The Fading Narcissist


Everybody who is part of our Fuel Matrix plays a part in maintaining our existence. Our construct, that which imprisons the creature and that which we want the world to see, must be maintained in order to preserve our existence. If not, we begin to fade away as the construct crumbles and collapses. The maintenance of this construct is entirely reliant on the provision of fuel and you play an integral part in that. How do the various types of appliance mesh together then in order to prevent us from fading away? 

I have explained how we draw fuel from primary, secondary and tertiary sources. These sources vary in potency and are affected of course by the method of delivery of the fuel. The primary source remains our most important source of fuel since it is this person, usually the intimate partner, who we are with more than anybody else but also who has the greatest emotional reaction to what we say and do. Therefore, this person provides us with the most fuel and of the most potent kind. They are also someone who satisfies the  The Prime Aims (which includes fuel) more than anyone else. The primary source is naturally the most important fuel provider which is why we seduce this person with such dedication, unleash such a terrible devaluation and keep on hoovering following escape or dis-engagement. We make such an investment in you as the primary source that we regard it as our right to keep drawing fuel from you, whether that is positive or negative, whether it is now, next week or in ten years’ time. You belong to us, in our minds.

The secondary sources are those which contribute good fuel and are invariably those who are part of our façade. Our lieutenants and the coterie are drawn from the secondary sources – friends, family and colleagues – who we interact with frequently but not to the same extent as we do with the primary source. Nor do the secondary sources give out the same heightened fuel as the primary source. The secondary sources serve an excellent function as part of the façade and the maintenance of this façade is important, therefore we prefer to keep the same people in at and keep adding to it. Secondary sources invariably enjoy lengthy golden periods with us. This is because our call on them is intermittent and therefore we are far less likely to regard their fuel as stale. Moreover, we can have many secondary sources but we only ever have one primary source. Thus if a certain secondary source is perhaps not admiring us as much (but they are not criticising us and are still providing some fuel) it does not merit a devaluation. They remain loyal, they remain part of the façade and we will just switch to another secondary source to increase the fuel. There is no need to devalue or ditch the initial secondary source. Thus you may see our kind have a friend who is “flavour of the month” because their fuel is better than other secondary sources and then the fuel dips in quality but it is not a concern as we can add another secondary source or switch to another who perhaps we have not seen for a couple of months. This is advantageous as it means our energy can be saved for devaluing the primary source whilst keeping a range of functioning secondary sources on hand and the façade intact.

The secondary sources very rarely stop providing fuel. They have no need to. A primary source may do so owing to the descent into ill health caused by the devaluation or learning how to tackle our kind as a response to the abuse. The secondary source, nearly always treated to an elongated  golden period, has no need to adopt a stance of not providing fuel.

A secondary source may however criticise us and if that is the case they may be subjected to devaluation but usually they are excluded from the coterie and replaced easily enough. They will be smeared and made to feel like an outsider, with the narcissist using the façade and other secondary sources to achieve this aim. We like to create our cliques and if anybody threatens our supremacy or delivers a criticism who is a secondary source they will be ejected from the group.

The occasion for devaluation of the secondary source is rare. It only happens in two instances. Firstly, the source has criticised the narcissist (this criticism might come through something said to the narcissist or something done, for example through exposing the narcissist’s behaviour to others)  and thus fury is ignited and the narcissist decides this person must be made an example of, before being discarded, in order to show the rest of the coterie who is in charge.

Secondly, in an even rarer instance it may happen when the narcissist has no primary source. If there is an absence of the primary source for a period of time, say a number of weeks, the narcissist’s fuel levels will have been tested. He will have sought to seduce and embed a new replacement primary source and most times the narcissist in such a situation is able to do so with success. However, let us assume this has not happened. The narcissist turns to his secondary and tertiary sources (more on tertiary in a moment) and relies more than usual on them to provide him with fuel during the absence of the primary source. At first there is no problem, the secondary sources provide positive fuel which is sustaining the narcissist, but if he has only a few secondary sources, then it will not be long before his fuel demands outstrip the positive fuel they can give. The lesser quality of their fuel (compared to the primary source) is being exposed by the absence of the primary source. It is also because greater demand is being placed on them.

Ultimately, the primary source will always go further for the narcissist than anybody else and they are also far more proximate. No matter how seductive. if the secondary source has to deal with his own family, his work and so on, he may not be available to provide fuel. If this keeps happening, combined with the increased demand and the lack of a primary source the strain on positive secondary sources will start to tell. This means the narcissist will either have to add new secondary sources and/or devalue the secondary sources to shift to negative fuel so he is sustained. This will work for a period of time with the confused inner circle friend who is a secondary source trying to work out why their supposed best friend is ignoring them and then trying to patch up the relationship. A secondary source however will not sustain devaluation as long as a primary source and may even infect other secondary sources by pointing out how they are being treated. The narcissist is already suffering reduced fuel levels and the supremacy of his façade is being challenged. This increases the demands on him.

The tertiary sources provide the least fuel and generally they are also treated to lengthy golden periods – for example the lady who works in the petrol station or the postman – since they are only extracted from on an intermittent basis. Tertiary sources can also be used straight away for negative fuel, for example, upbraiding a waiter or shouting down a shop assistant. We do not regard them as necessary to the maintenance of the façade, their negative fuel provides a useful boost and such high-handed behaviour may impress a primary (or secondary source) and draw positive fuel from them where appropriate.

If there is no primary source for a period of time, the reliance on tertiary sources increases. There will be increased activity to use technology to draw these people to the narcissist – such as on dating sites, chat rooms or through social media, but if the reliance is frequent and sustained the quality of the fuel will diminish quickly and those who have been attached to the narcissist in this way will be discarded and replaced with new remote tertiary sources promptly. There will be a high turnover. At the same time, the narcissist is likely to lash out at physically proximate sources more and more as the fuel level dips. This happens for two reasons. Firstly, he needs the fuel more than ever from tertiary sources and negative fuel is better than positive. Secondly, he will be furious at being placed in this position (through having no primary source but he has not got one to lash out at) so tertiary sources bear the brunt of this rage.

A narcissist without a primary source will eventually alienate secondary sources and in certain environments – say a small town – will struggle to replace them as people become wise to what he is. He may lack the energy to keep up the turnover of remote tertiary sources and spends his time lashing out at those which are physically proximate. At this point the narcissist faces losing the façade (since so many people know about his behaviour) in order to keep drawing fuel. It is now that he has three choices: –

  1. Secure a new primary source immediately;
  2. Move his environment so he can seek out fresh secondary sources and tertiary sources and rebuild his façade; or
  3. Sink into depression and inactivity as his fuel levels plummet.

The narcissist becomes a fading star. Once brilliant, magnificent and illuminating, his loss of the primary source and inability to find another means that the alluring shine is fading as a black hole awaits. He begins to fade as he enters a fuel crisis. Thus you can see just how paramount the primary source is to the existence of our kind and why we make such an effort to secure them, replace them and hoover them back again.

Listen to ‘The Fading Narcissist’

32 thoughts on “The Fading Narcissist

  1. Sherry says:

    These are helpful explanations of how this kind thinks & processes.

  2. Nikki Ashley says:

    Suppose the narcissist is aging (in this case, 70), but still active, yet lives in a small, rural area. He still has a primary source, however, he views the source (a live-in) as low grade. Do his traits worsen….or does he just give in and mellow.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      It depends on which school he belongs to.

  3. Little Bee says:


    if you are in the Golden Period with a new victim, would you hoover discarded former IPPS in a benign manner to draw some positive fuel? And I don’t mean an accidental f2f meeting but a comment on social media platform that shows a) that you still check her social media b) that you try to be friendly and want to be in touch.

    I think he is MRN or UMNR and he started dating a new girl but still (every two weeks) he contacts me to show me how friendly he is with me. I don’t know what is his motive if he seduces someone new right now.

  4. Petra says:

    So how do you create a fuel crisis ina mid Ranger

    1. HG Tudor says:

      If you go escape and go not contact that may well cause one. However, because you do not know all of the constituent parts of the fuel matrix, you cannot know for sure if it will happen.

  5. W says:

    What would happen if the loss of a primary source wasn’t a physical loss, they’re still THERE just not satisfactory
    AND other sources are scarce as you said, in a small town?

    Already the depression/inactivity has been going on for some time.
    What next ?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Either a fuel crisis or moving to seek new appliances.

  6. Watermelon says:

    I love this one HG, thank you so much. It is very eye opening.

    I hear the N is worse than usual (and considering, he has every right to be). My son has copped two recent tirades from him and tells me that he’s really bad.

    The best I could do was get the hell out of the way, if I was the brunt of his anger when all was good, I imagine he’d be 100 times worse now. I hear he’s yelling and screaming at everyone. I think he’s quite possibly burning the few relationships he has.

    Glad I’m not there to cop that. He can’t blame me if I’m not there.

  7. Mona says:

    You are extremely anxious to feel all alone again.
    Each tiny criticism is a threat of degrading/humiliating loneliness.
    And one of the ways you learnt in childhood to bind people is to put them under your thumb, to control and to manipulate them. You are never sure, that people like you because of what you are, but you are sure, that people like you because of what you give, show and act and because of all the benefits you give them from time to time. They – of course- do not know the prize, they have to pay later (especially your intimate I…s. )

    On the other hand, if an intimate relationship works, it becomes stale, because you are used to drama. You need the extreme highs and lows in a relationship to feel comfortable, to feel a little bit yourself?. Your dark character traits do their own work. They are too strong, too often practised and trained. The other ones (the “soft” ones ) have been punished so often and so long ago that they vanished in space. You wrote in one of your topics, that you cut the rope between your own feelings and your soul in past. No wonder, that they call it in my home country “soulmurder”. Therefore you do not feel real soft feelings anymore. (You wrote it differently, it is only my interpretation).

    As if you are in the labyrinth of Minotaur and you are him now.

    You are a (self-) made psychopath, not a born one.

    What a knot of feelings, attitudes,beliefs, inner confusion, projection of feelings and character traits and own intrinsic character traits.

    Although it is a tragedy, do not misunderstand me, I do not feel compassion. It is your task to cut the knot and not the task of any one else to rescue you.

    1. SarcNarc says:

      I’d like your interpretation to be true, Mona, as I have a similar feeling.
      And I do have compassion for the lost souls, or maybe just those I can feel are not as lost as they may seem to be.
      As it happens, I have a liking for knots – I never cut them, like Alexander did with the gordian knot, I’d like to have a try!

      OR, you could test yourself with the MBTI personality test, HG.
      There is one personality, INTJ, which can give people the airs of a sociopath. Takes 15 minutes, helped me realize many things (and I’ve been repressing the result for a decade before I took interest)

  8. H. says:

    HG, does all primary fuel eventually become stale? What is the longest you stuck with your primary source (or she stuck with you, should I say).

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I think you mean ‘does all positive fuel from an IPPS become stale’ – yes it does.
      I think you also mean, ‘what is the longest golden period the IPPS has had with me’ – 2.5 years

      1. H. says:

        Exactly, all IPPS’s fuel becomes stale. That’s what I thought. How exhausting for all involved.

      2. Twilight says:


        Was that your ex wife?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Is that is being asked about the longest golden period, the answer is, yes.

          1. Twilight says:

            Yes it was, thank you HG.

      3. Agnes says:

        Did you cheat on her during this 2.5 years golden period? What are your thoughts when you are “happy” for so long with a woman – do you think she might be the one, do you think you are in love? Do you hope it will last forever?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          No I did not cheat, it was the golden period.
          Yes, one thinks she is the one, one thinks one is in love, one wants it to last forever.

          1. NarcAngel says:


            Do you remember specific incidences or conversations in your relationships that are a pivotal point in turning from the golden period to devaluation? Are you shocked by something this supposed angel has said or done to cause you to begin her devaluation? Or is it almost always a gradual drop in potency of the fuel and not a particular incident?

            I’m not asking for examples-just whether or not you recall specifics yourself.

          2. MLA - Clarece says:

            Interesting how you answered that HG. “One thinks she is the one, one thinks one is in love, one wants it to last forever.” It’s like you compartmentalized the part of yourself that was enraptured by this person as unrecognizable to yourself.

          3. H. says:

            Wow, a golden period of 2.5 years. I think mine was a month. 🙂

          4. H. says:

            HG, do you have children?

          5. HG Tudor says:


      4. Agnes says:

        I see. And how long have you been married? And don’t you miss this long golden period with her? Don’t you think “maybe I screwed up, maybe if I was better for her I wouldn’t miss a good thing”? Don’t you regret?

        But how can you believe (during golden period) that she is the one if you know that you are narcissist and that one day you will devalue and discard her?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          I am not married.
          The power of infatuation, but it remains to be seen if this has now altered.

          1. Twilight says:


            Do you suspect it has altered?

          2. HG Tudor says:

            Do not know until it happens.

          3. Twilight says:

            Understand, I hope you find out one day

      5. Vera says:

        HG, does the length of the golden period for a particular person have any other significance other than that’s when the fuel went stale? Meaning, does the length relate in any way to the type of narc (lesser, mid or greater), the expectations of the narc with respect to each new IPPS, etc. Or does it all have to do with the reactions and responses of the IPPS? So that if the IPPS doesn’t provide the level of positive fuel that the narc expects or requires, then devaluation starts sooner?

      6. Somewhere over the rainbow says:

        “One thinks she is the one, one thinks one is in love, one wants it to last forever.”

        HG, is this an answer or a brain-teaser?

  9. Sounds exhausting!!

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