The Narcissist’s Fuel Matrix Part Two


As explained in Part One, understanding the fuel matrix for the relevant school of narcissist (with appropriate adjustments relevant to the cadre) allows you to understand how a particular narcissist is likely to respond to your imposition of no contact, dependent on how you fit into that matrix. It also allows you to understand what other competing interests you can expect within this fuel matrix and how the narcissist is likely to interact with these other sources. This part of the series considers the fuel matrix of the Mid-Range School of narcissist.

  1. The Lower Mid-Range Narcissist (“LMRN”)

The LMRN is of reasonable cognitive function. He has no awareness as to what he is. Whilst passive aggressive features are the forte of the Mid Ranger Narcissist, as a lower, he does gravitate towards the aggression of the Lesser Narcissist. This means that when there is an ignition of fury, the relevant victim may well experience the manifestation of physical violence. There is not the blunt fury of the Lesser, but the risk of being punched or kicked is there. The LMRN, when heated fury is ignited, will respond at times by throttling the victim.  There are potential substance abuse issues evident with the LMRN also. He or she will work and have a reasonable job albeit it is unremarkable.

The LMRN relies heavily on people feeling sorry for him or her and this arises either through the manifestation of cold fury, through silent treatments et al or having a temper tantrum as heated fury is exhibited. Unlike the Lesser who will erupt in a volcanic fashion or the Greater who will erupt with a frenzied malice, a calculated application of antipathy which will hurt his or victim, the LMRN is petulant.

Of all the schools and their divisions, the LMRN is most likely to become The Incredible Sulk . He has a fairly low threshold of control on his fury and can either erupt with heated or cold fury and pretty much does so in equal measure, something which is different from the other divisions of schools.

The LMRN has a small fuel matrix. He has little charm, if any, he will have limited financial power and relies on people feeling sorry for him and wanting to help him. The LMRN who is of the Victim Cadre is a pathetic creature indeed. In terms of the fuel matrix, it is as follows

a. The primary source will usually be intimate in nature. There may be occasions where the LMRN will skulk back to his or her parents and place them as primary source but most of the time the primary source will be intimate in nature and is often someone who is a The Carrier Empathto put up with the fairly low energy level of the LMRN and his or her propensity to sulk. The primary source is expected to work and run the house and will be denied much opportunity to socialise as the LMRN will not want that person being away from them.

b. There will be numerous familial secondary sources. Unlike the Lower Lesser or Middle  Lesser, the LMRN is able to maintain reasonably good relationships with his family because he seeks pity and sympathy more than fear and hurt. They will regard him as moody but will put up with it meaning he is able to rely on these secondary sources as reliable. This is necessary because of the point in (c).

c. The social secondary sources will be limited. Lacking charm and generally regarded as sulky, self-centred and something of a mardy arse, the LMRN struggles with creating a significant social secondary source circle. He will have a small number, three or four, inner circle friends with whom he will do most things;

d. The LMRN usually works and therefore will have colleague secondary sources. He will not be held in high regard by them but nevertheless his less volcanic nature means that he will have numerous of these colleague secondary sources dependent on the size of the organisation he works for;

e. The LMRN will have an IPSS when the IPPS is being devalued. It is unusual for him to have more than one and it is often the case that the IPSS will not be recruited from a social setting but usually through work;

f. In terms of tertiary sources, the LMRN will engage with a reasonable number of these sources as he works, he will be out and about in terms of shopping etc and his interactions will largely be benign in nature unless he perceives a criticism and then he will readily erupt in order to draw negative fuel from the offending tertiary source.

2. The Middle Mid-Ranger Narcissist (“MMRN”)

The MMRN has a little charm but his weapon is politeness and behaving in a respectable manner. He or she is well-thought of. The MMRN is not a huge attention seeker and does not exhibit grandiose behaviours. Instead the MMRN wants to be well thought of by everybody. This person is intelligent and is likely to have a good job.

Like any narcissist, the MMRN is hugely sensitive to criticism and the MMRN is more sensitive than most. This is because he lacks the dynamic aggression of the Lesser rf the malevolent charm of the Greater but instead feels constrained by his lack of ability to influence people in a sudden and meaningful manner. This means that the MMRN is an envious individual and is always looking to gain the advantage from covert and secretive means. He throws the figurative second punch (often piggybacking on the behaviour of a Greater although he does not know that this is what that person is). He is two-faced, a spreader of gossip and always looking to get other people to do his dirty work. He is cowardly but will never countenance being called as such. He ingratiates himself with people through his intelligence and limited charm and is prone to repeated pity plays. He is the archetypal architect of the silent treatment in all its forms and heated fury is rare with him. If it does appear, it will be shouting, spitting and slapping. He is an habitual liar, not just in a defensive manner (which is what Lessers and the LMRN do) but in a proactive manner, in order to cause trouble and cajole people into acting on his behalf through the dissemination of gossiping untruths.

The fuel matrix of the MMRN is not extensive but is larger than that of the LMRN.

a. The primary source. Rarely a family member and nearly always an intimate partner. This person will be guilt-tripped into doing everything for the supposedly hard-working MMRN. He will use his façade of being a ‘regular’ guy to keep the IPPS in place. He will unleash repeated silent treatments, blame-shifting and projection to maintain the upper hand;

b. Familial secondary sources.  The MMRN has reliable and extensive familial secondary sources. He is either well-regarded by those of The Coterie who consider him to be a well-brought up son, well-regarded nephew and brother, or as someone who is prone to being viewed as “sensitive” being the unknowing victim’s view of this particular narcissist. Either way the family secondary circle is one which is compliant for the MMRN;

c. Colleague secondary sources. The MMRN has a reasonable sized fuel matrix at work. This is roughly equal between those who consider him a diligent worker and reliable and those who consider him to be untrustworthy and a brown-noser. Whilst the MMRN will make pity plays concerning the unfair attitude of the latter group, the fact remains that he has engagement with well over a dozen people, possibly more dependent on the size of the workplace, all of which who are locked into his fuel matrix.

d. With respect to the social secondary sources, the MMRN does not have an extensive social circle. His matrix draws from the IPPS and the secondary sources through family and work. Lacking the charisma and grandiose behaviours which might draw people to him socially in significant numbers, the MMRN keeps his social circle small with perhaps 4-6 inner circle friends. He will not see these friends with significant regularity but instead does so more through the auspices of organised events, such as dinner parties amongst the groups or attendance at functions.

e. The MMRN will have an IPSS at the appropriate time. He is capable of securing the attentions of two IPSSs through a combination of intelligence and manipulation. He relies, like the LMRN on the workplace being the feeder ground for the selection and cultivation of the IPSS or IPSSs. Somewhat ponderous in nature and also very much aware of his façade the MMRN is careful to keep IPPS and IPSSs very separate.

f. The MMRN will engage with tertiary sources as a consequence of job, social life and general community involvement. Again, his awareness of the façade means that his engagements for the most part will be benign in nature. Should a tertiary source wound him, he is less likely to lash out at that tertiary source and instead more likely to triangulate the individual through the raising of a complaint to the relevant person.

3. The Upper Mid-Range Narcissist (“UMRN”)

This division of the Mid Range school of narcissism is of considerable intelligence. He also has some reasonable charm. People often mistake the UMRN for a Greater. This is because the UMRN has a degree of sophistication, some charm and some calculation. He is rarely physical with his victims and instead he is a master manipulator through the application of silence. Whether it is a steely gaze, a glacial shoulder or ghosting, the UMRN is able to use the silent treatment to the greatest effect. He instinctively identifies victims who find such treatment of being ignored and overlooked especially disturbing. He is also capable in terms of playing people off against one another. He does not have the tantrum behaviour of the LMRN nor the avoidant tendencies of the MMRN, instead he finds considerable fuel in playing people against one another based on petty insecurities. He will use exclusion from a group, be it work, family or social as the stick by which to bring about compliance. He does not hit, he does not threaten but rather he uses the imposition of silence through exclusion as a major modus operandi to achieving what he requires.

a. The primary source. This is nearly always going to be an intimate partner. His attributes and the fact that he will hold a senior or professional position makes him an attractive prospect. He appears lacking volatility since he has a better hold on his ignited fury than the other schools and divisions mentioned so far. He will have decent financial ability. He relies extensively on the IPPS as other narcissists do, but his reliance is not as great as the other schools and divisions touch on.

b. Familial secondary sources. He is generally well-regarded by his family secondary sources and can command numerous of them for the purposes of support and fuel. He is likely to have made an example of one or two and excluded them from the group and no longer bothers with them. Expect therefore one or two black sheep to exist in the fuel matrix of the UMRN;

c. Colleague secondary sources. The UMRN will have a significant work fuel matrix. The UMRN is less likely to be a business owner as he prefers to be part of a large machine, thus as a senior manager in a corporate setting, a partner in an accountancy practice or an academic in a college or university he is able to interface with dozens of people who he will utilise as secondary sources. The majority will regard him in a benign manner, but he will have made one or two enemies within the workplace, again arising from his ability to freeze people out;

d. Social secondary sources. The  UMRN will have the largest social circle of all mid-rangers but it is still not extensive. Work and family provide the bulk of his secondary sources and socially he will have numerous outer circle friends (often drawn from work) perhaps around a dozen and only say two or three inner circle friends who are likely to be long-standing in nature. Outer circle friends will also be lost from time to time through his exclusionary behaviours.

e. IPSSs. The UMRN is capable of operating two or more IPSSs should the need arise. He will carefully keep them separate from one another, deploying the assistance of Lieutenants in ensuring that they do not find out about one another until after the event or if he decides there is something to be served in such triangulation, but this is rare. He has the sophistication and attraction to keep several plates spinning and once people learn about such Casanova behaviour they would be rather surprised by such a revelation;

f. The UMRN knows numerous tertiary sources. He interacts with them as a consequence of his varied involvement in the community, socially and through work. He is most mindful of the efficacy of the façade and therefore is mainly pleasant and benign in his interactions with them as he wishes to remain well thought of. If a tertiary source displeases him, he will not lash out, but again will request their removal as waiter or a change of post man etc from the relevant powers that be.

Part Three examines the Fuel Matrix of the Greater school of narcissism.


45 thoughts on “The Narcissist’s Fuel Matrix Part Two”

  1. HG,

    I entered the wrong email address so I have to start over with this comment.

    I know 3 narcissists who write in a robotic manner like this in email and as text messages: (of course the subject of these sentences would change accordingly with the topic of discussion)


    Will discuss at a later time
    Not feeling well
    Talk soon

    I know a 4th narcissist who is a Elite Upper Midranger and he does not write in the robotic format. He writes in a regular sentence and paragraph format like normal people and uses “I” such as “I can ..”, “I will …”, etc. etc.

    1. So, does the Elite Upper Midranger write in that robotic format, too? I never seem him write that way in our emails.

    2. And why does he not write in that robotic format like the other 3 narcissists then? He is a teacher, too.

    1. I think that is text speak as opposed to anything to do with narcissism. I do not use text speak because I find it lazy, I write in sentences in emails and texts, I do not use emojis and I do not use LOL, LMAO etc.

      1. Us “old schoolers” text in complete sentences with proper punctuation. My kids give me hell over it! If you ever see me use LOL, have me committed…some alien force has taken over my brain!

        But emojis are awesome! My narc texted an emoji ONCE and I asked if somebody had his phone. I was shocked, but it felt all warm and fuzzy because he DOES NOT do emojis, ever! Try it just once for effect HG. Come on…you know you want to 😘

        1. I hate lol and emoji and dont use them other than here. I find it necessary here because people dont know me and often mistake my sense of humor for something else.

          1. LOL is one letter shorter than typing out Haha too. Depending who / where I’m communicating I use Lol if I want to make sure something I’m saying that could maybe sound sarcastic, isn’t being taken too seriously and that I’m kidding around.
            My best friend always says that depending on someone’s mood a text can always be read with two different meanings. So I try to stay cognizant of that.

          2. Oooh! I love emojis. Lots of my texts (sent and received) are just emojis. The only thing I don’t like is there’s often just not the one I want.

        2. MB
          You reminded me of something humorous. My relationship with my Moron in Munich was almost exclusively texting. Near the onset when he was still attempting to lovebomb, he began ending every text with 💔.

          This made me pause, so I diplomatically asked him what he meant. He said some romantic BS that it was symbolic of how our two incomplete hearts had come together to form a whole heart. I just laughed to myself and thought it was funny. But in the back of my mind, I always wondered if it was a sign…

          1. Oh yes, a sign alright, WS. Morton was fragmented on the inside down to his core as his favorite emoji shows. Lol

      2. Oh ok. I meant that I never seen the UMRN write “Will text later, Will call later, Will discuss, etc.” I have seen the other narcissists write like this (without the “I”). And I asked you about this before and you said that it was a lack of accountability thing to not add “I” before “will” or any other word.

        So, my question now is does the UMRN write like this, too?

        I see all the other narcissists write “Will text later, Will call later, etc.” but I never saw the UMRN narc write this way to me or to anybody. He is a teacher so i don’t know if that makes a difference but it is odd that he doesn’t write this way but the others are big with using “Will” at the beginning of the sentence.

      3. Hi HG,

        I think I had to rephrase my question. I’m sorry if it was confusing! Basically, does the UMRN also write “Will talk later, Will call later, etc.”?

  2. HG

    I can’t find they hoiover post so I’ll ask this here.

    I had something very strange happen today. One of the narcs buddies friended me. I do know this person and we were all once in a fb group together. This person left the group cancelled his fb and started a new profile. Why ? I do not know. In any case his new profile has been up and running for at least 4 months but he never friended me nor I him. Today out of the blue I get the friend request. I check to see if any other from that group are his friends. Nope. I’m certain the Narc is but I can’t see because I’m blocked

    Is this a coincidence? Or a Lieutenant sent to keep tabs on me?

  3. HG Hope this finds you well.. You say that a MMRN is capable of having 2 IPSS’s. How many SIPSS’s may there be? What is the determining factor for being taken off the shelf? How long could a SIPSS be gone before it is noticed? Thanks for your time and counsel.

    1. There can be many SIPPS.
      Being taken off the shelf is being hoovered, therefore Hoover Trigger and Hoover Execution Criteria.
      Varies – may not even be noticed.

      1. Thank you. Is “inventory” taken occasionally to see who is still on the shelf and who has escapes?

      2. HG, you are saying it may not be noticed, which means until the narc decides to Hoover, correct? Also, is this accurate to say that if the last interaction with the narc was benign (the narc was friendly and polite and promised future contact) then in his mind things remain the same even if a long time has passed, i.e., the shelved appliance remains on the shelf ready for whenever the narc wanted to engage again? Thank you!

  4. Spot on as always HG. The UMRN I know could very well be mistaken for a Greater (I know three, two GE’s and a GC) and I was wondering if maybe I had misdiagnosed him. In the end, I thought not as the fury is present every now and again but it’s swift to come and quick to go. The intelligence is not quite there either.

    The only thing with this one is that I really cannot see sign of a IPPS. In fact, he has literally just invited me round to his where it would be very obvious if a woman had been present living there. The triangulations are continual though.

    1. Initially, I wasn’t sure whether the narc I was involved with was a LGN or an UMRN. Then as I read HG’s blogs and thought about it, I realised that my former boss is a greater and the ex is an UMR. Whereas the G certainly has it in him to be very malicious and vidictive, the MR ex mostly solved his anger issues via silent treatment. The MR is smart and pretty good at manipulation, but he’s not what you’d call an achiever and half of what he does is instinctive.

  5. Sir, I have a question. Perhaps a dumb one, but I don’t get it. Why do you need fuel? I can be alone and speak to no one for days, I enjoy the silence. I don’t feel less of a person during or afterwards. I think I’ve missed something. Can’t narcissists generate any good feelings about themselves? I’ve known many and most did have good qualities, things they didn’t seem to give themselves credit for. Can’t narcissists see those things in themselves and use them as fuel? Thank you for what you do and opening yourself to be a source of invaluable information and understanding for us.

  6. It’s fascinating how accurate your description of my UMRN’s behavior is. Sometimes I think he has features of a lower level greater, too; I especially wonder how much he’s aware of what he does. I’d appreciate some posts on a situation of the overlap of midrangers and greaters.

  7. My son-in-law showed me my adopted son’s FB page today. I don’t do FB, so I’d never seen it. It was massively depressing. Of course I know he’s a narc, but that doesn’t make it any easier to see his machinations. Everything in his post was so fake and sympathy seeking, and the people who had commented had bought right into it and were giving him fuel all based on lies.

    This same son hit me up for a considerable loan a few weeks ago with a convoluted sob story based on a series of shady decisions and ridiculous spending in a futile attempt to try to hold onto his IPPS (who if not a narc herself is awfully close).

    Given this article and everything I know about him, seems he’s a lower midranger. As a mother this is all very sad. He’s constantly sabotaging himself with his own bad judgement and nothing I can really do but watch. 😐

    1. WS
      From our perspective it is like watching a storm wreak havoc on the lives of everyone around them and eventually, if they aren’t careful, they sometimes self-destruct. I was able to creep on a somatic female’s FB and sure enough it was plastered with her pics and, as I scrolled through, I found one with the rictus grin…Bingo! She looked like a psycho. It was really weird.

      All we can do is stand aside and watch.

  8. “He relies extensively on the IPPS as other narcissists do, but his reliance is not as great as the other schools and divisions touch on.”

    Would you be willing to share why this is true of the UMR?

    1. Because he has a larger secondary source section in his fuel matrix. The primary source is always the largest provider of fuel in a narcissist’s fuel matrix (under normal conditions – i.e. if the IPPS on NIPPS has not escaped or there has been disengagement and no replacement) however, the extent of being the largest fuel provider varies through the schools because of the ability to command larger and more varied matrices. Thus, as a rough example, Lessers will rely on the primary source for 80-90% of their fuel, Mid-Range 60-80%, Greater 40-70%.

      1. Very interesting HG, thank you for clarifying. I misunderstood. I read it as the UMRN relies less on the IPPS than ANY other N’s; hence my confusion.

      2. Hg..the percentages have surprised me especially for the Greater. Though I see it makes logical sense due to the size potential of the fuel matrix. I still found 40%-70% quite low. It would also imply that disengagement of the IPPS could take place much sooner with this non-reliance, though I suppose it would depend a great deal on the residual benefits. I guess being able to travel from one to the other in an extensive matrix would imply longevity on the other hand.

        It’s really interesting and quite complex.. and only the narcissist at the time knows of his own fuel Matrix.. another good example of how we can never win the day.
        …we would literally be playing with the missing chess piece or suits in a deck, if using the analogy of games.

        As you said before, the way to win is not to play (engage) in the first place.
        Or at least to stop ‘once you know’.

        1. Bear in mind however that the Greater, having significant more access to IPSSs could disengage from the IPPS and not replace that person. If that former IPPS provided 40% of fuel and say 20% came from IPSSs and 30% from NISS and 10% from tertiary, the Greater could increase the fuel provision from IPSS from 20 to 50% to more or less cover the loss of the primary source.

          1. Yes. I see how the shift would unfold with a few IPSS’s. Not for my last ex but a previous one, this explains a switch in behaviour from overt preventative hoovers to blasé over confidence, devaluation and unrecognisable smirking.

  9. The fuel matrix articles are quite literally the encyclopaedia of everything you would ever need to know about each cadre, and Fuel from different sources.

    This series alongside the 5 facts articles have provided me every single answer to all of my questions about the narcissist cadres, and helped me to identify which cadre he is in and what that means. I think I was being “too nice” with the initial thoughts of him being a MMR, I think he is more of a LMR, and his mother is his ( non intimate) primary source, he has never left her home, and has long periods of time without a IPPS, just secondary sources that stick around.

    The way the articles are broken down, and the amount of information provided, is so incredibly helpful. I have recommended them to quite a few people, due to this and they have also advised how eye opening they are.

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