Why The Narcissist Makes It All So Difficult

WHY THENARCISSISTMAKES IT ALLSO DIFFICULT

 

You will have silently asked yourself this question many times. You will have asked it of friends and family as you recount the latest confusing bout of behaviour from us. You may even go so far as to ask us why we make everything so difficult. Your confusion stems from several places. First of all, life really ought to be a bowl of cherries and straight forward. You have a good house, two cars on the drive, you get to go on holiday, there are no real concerns about the bills, the jobs seem safe. You are not rich but you are in a fortunate position. Everybody in the family enjoys good health, you have two wonderful children and extended family are supportive and play a part in your life. You once got along famously, brilliantly, a complete match made in heaven which shows that it can be done and therefore that suggests, does it not, that this can be resurrected and returned to, if only he wanted to and tried to do it. Going beyond this you give everything to the relationship. You have not changed. You remain devoted, loving, working hard for the family unit both in the office and at home. You make our meals, you suggest days out, you attend to the laundry and the housework with little assistance in return. You know that you give more of yourself to us, emotionally and in terms of dedication to the concept of our relationship and the family and truth be told you do not begrudge doing so. You have always been a giver and you derive pleasure in seeing other people content and happy knowing that you have played a part in it. Whilst it would be lovely to receive some affection from time to time you could live without it, if you are completely honest, if only we did not make everything so difficult.

You cannot understand why we make life so hard. There is nothing to be upset or concerned about. Indeed, with your tolerance and giving nature, we have surely landed on our feet. Your friends tell you that given everything you do for us we ought to drop to our knees and worship you when you come through the door in the evening. You laugh at such suggestions, since you are far too modest, but inside you do wish that there could be some acknowledgement, some thanks for everything you do. It does not have to be reciprocated, you are content with that role, but if only we would accept this massive advantage that we have and not spoil things, cause arguments and bring discord when there really is no need. You could understand it if you actually did something wrong but you do not, you know you don’t. From time to time you do find yourself analysing what you do and wondering if perhaps it is you that causes these sudden mood-swings, the lashing out, the sulking silences and the irritation. Once in a while you think you might have done something wrong and you apologise and make amends, not that it seems to get you anywhere. At times you think you would be better off if you came in drunk, kicked the dog and demanded that we make you something to eat before falling asleep in front of the television. Perhaps if you came in full of thunder and gave us a slap we might respect you more, because it seems that your dedication and subservience get you none. This thought tumbles through your mind often but you know you could not behave like that, because it is not you, but it does make you wonder what you need to do to gain our respect, our interest and our love once again, like it once was.

You cannot understand why someone would choose to be so difficult and so often. We have every advantage. Why not be content with that and life a wonderful life with a delightful family and doting spouse? Surely that is far easier than causing chaos, pandemonium and upset? Not only do these storms come out of nowhere, you just cannot understand why someone would behave like that towards someone that we supposedly love and care about. It makes no sense, no sense whatsoever, but you are not going to give up. You are not a quitter. You will work out what it is and then make the appropriate changes so that life really is a bed of roses.

How often have you felt this way? Many times I should imagine. It is extraordinary and unbelievable that we almost choose a life of conflict over what could be a peaceful and enjoyable life. This makes no sense to you at all. The fact is that we do not choose to cause confusion and chaos, we have to. Admittedly, we choose the degree and extent, the Greater of our kind doling out particularly savage and heinous machinations which increase the pain and misery, but all of us, whether Lesser, Mid-Range of Greater do not choose a life of conflict with you, our intimate partner, it has to happen.

We need to create drama because we feed off the emotional output generated by you in response to that drama and this provides us with fuel. It has gone beyond the point where we could rely on your admiration, love and affection, that has become stale although we do not dismiss it out of hand. In order to make that admiration, love and affection seem shiny and new (if only for a short while) we must create the drama, the downside and the conflict in order so there is a contrast. This contrast will allow us to reinstate our “good side”, the golden period and things will seem wonderful for a period of time but then the stale sensation returns once again. Thus the conflict must be resumed. You have no control over this. No matter how hard you try to please us, to accommodate us and to do the things that we like, this unquenchable need for fuel means that the roller coaster will not stop. There is often no logic to it, from your perspective. You may notice certain behaviours which tell you that the storm is about to be unleashed but often you will not know. This is because what triggers the storm is the ignition of our fury which is caused by your criticism of us. Those criticisms are usually more likely to be perceived by us than actual on your behalf and this means you will always struggle to identify them. Believe me, a simple “Hello, how are you?” can trigger the storm. In our world we regard this simple and pleasant greeting as unnecessary questioning and the suggestion that there is something wrong. If there is something wrong, then that is a criticism. This is why we seem to erupt over “nothing”. It is nothing in your world but in ours there has been a criticism and this ignites our fury with the resulting shouting, nastiness, sulking and silent treatments. There is no pattern to this behaviour. Once cannot say it is three weeks good one week bad. You may have months of the reinstated golden period before another tornado tears through your life. It may be a succession of tornadoes each and every single day for a month. It will always leave you confused and bewildered as to why we behave this way when there is so much good in our lives, so much to enjoy and look forward. As ever this is because you are looking at the world from your perspective. From ours it is vastly different. We do not choose to make life difficult, we have to.

86 thoughts on “Why The Narcissist Makes It All So Difficult

  1. Renee McConnell says:

    I’m scared of everything nowadays. I would have gotten those girls out before the car blew up. I don’t care that i was pregnant, i cannot forgive myself because of their deaths.

  2. Jess says:

    Dear HG: of those 4.5 years with the previous IPPS, how long was the Golden Period?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Around 18-21 months or so.

      1. Laurel says:

        Hello HG!

        Thank you for your answer here. I’ve often wondered how long the golden period can last and I knew it could be for a substantial period.

        As always, your words totally eclipse anything else on the internet about narcissism.

        I’ve had a bit of a difficult time of late. Obsessing over him (pure and unbroken no contact though for 18 months!!!!!) but those golden periods are so intense and intoxicating that it does live on in your head. Those days never last though. They never come back.

        When they are with the new supply, everything seems so perfect. It can seem like we have lost someone who finds happiness with another – therefore we were substandard in some way.

        But we all end up in the same place. The golden period might go on for a good 2 years or more in some cases – however that’s never the last chapter.

        Thanks for yet another awesome post.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          You are welcome Laurel. Since you are obsessing over him, your no contact is not total. Well done on not engaging or communicating with the narcissist, although there is more for you to do with regard to your No Contact Regime and avoiding the Narcissist´s Pitchfork.

          1. Laurel says:

            Thank you HG for your words.
            I appreciate them. I have implemented no contact from everything I have read of yours and this includes some books. I understand GOSO and I changed all my email addresses, phone number, deleted social media and have not contacted him. I’ve blocked him in every single way I can.

            It’s just the constant thinking of him lately.

            I will buy your no contact book. I re read the other books I previously bought. This might be what I need. A new dose.

            Thank you again for your words. When I come here I know it’s ok to not be ok.

            It keeps my resolve. I’ll keep reading.
            That pitchfork is real.
            Thank you HG.

    2. Jess says:

      Thank you HG, appreciate the candor. Curious: are Greaters able to maintain the GP longer than Mids and Lessers? Or is there non correlation?

      1. HG Tudor says:

        Yes we do.

  3. Jess says:

    HG: just a follow-up, how long was the GP itself if I may ask?

  4. Jess says:

    Dear HG: just to clarify – I mean the timeframe from the beginning of the golden period of the former IPPS until the disengagement from her (by former IPPS I mean the one before Shieldmaiden). Curious to know the length of the cycle.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Around 4.5 years

      1. Jess says:

        Thank you. That’s quite a long time. Thought the GP was usually around 6-18 months. She must have been a catch!

        1. HG Tudor says:

          That includes devaluation and the golden period.

  5. Pale Horse says:

    Spot on as always HG. I think most of us here have asked ourselves why the N has to make life so difficult when life could be so pleasurable. When I was with my NEX, life would be fantastic but then she would have to create that contrast. If only she knew she did not have to….if only I knew that yes she did…

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Thank you PH.

    2. MB says:

      Hi PH! Good to see you. I hope you are well.

      1. Pale Horse says:

        Hi MB! Life has gotten better. I hope you are well too.

    3. S. Grace says:

      Good analogy, Pale Horse.

  6. Anm says:

    HG,
    I was speaking with a friend of mine the other day. Her children’s father and mine seem the play by the same book. We found it interesting that both her ex, and mine, sent us similar emails raging, and ended with ‘You deserve to be locked away. You are a criminal, and I will see to it that it happens’. I sort of did a half laugh, then I started thinking , this is probably a common thing, considering Narcissist need revenge, or a Narcissist is prone to engage with Borderlines who have their run ins with the law.
    I read your How No Contact Feels, and such. But how would a Narcisist feel, and deal with it, if a fuel source or former fuel source became incarcerated?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      It would depend on the appliances place in the fuel matrix and whether the appliance is painted black or white.

    2. Cindy says:

      Hey Anm,
      When I told my ex he was a narc, his parting words were (among many other statements) : “I hope you die! I hope you get in a car wreck and die!”
      I chalked it up to narc injury.

      1. Anm says:

        Cindy,
        Yes, I am very familiar with these comments. I guess my question was in regards to the forced no contact. In a sense, the fuel source is forced to go no contact, and the hoover bar is significantly raised. I think HG is right, too many factors go into an equation like this.

        1. WhoCares says:

          Anm,

          I don’t know about other positions in the fuel matrix but I think if a narcissist had a sudden enforced ‘no contact’ with an IPPS (through incarceration, a restraining order, or even through death) – unless, it was a Greater, the narc would suffer a serious fuel crisis or shortage. And, dependent upon the cadre of narc, he or she would elicit fuel in whatever way came the fastest and easiest – angry lashing out, eliciting sympathy (death) etc., from secondary and tertiary sources. Or a bout of reliance on alcohol and/or drugs could also act a fuel replacement in combination with drawing fuel.

  7. K says:

    Fuck yeah! The Patriots won!!!

    1. Pale Horse says:

      Hell yeah!!

      1. K says:

        Ha ha ha…New England is awesome!!!

    2. Mercy says:

      Haha K, I wasn’t expecting that from you. My youngest is a huge Patriots fan and her hubby is huge Rams fan. It was a fun Superbowl party this year even though the game was slow.

      1. K says:

        Mercy
        Ha ha ha…New Englanders can be quite passionate about sports.

  8. amanda SNapchat says:

    We are all on the shelf while the narc is with the IPPS. I guess good to remember narc-empath dynamics.

  9. amanda SNapchat says:

    i have seen your Instagram account HG. I feel you are a mix of a somatic and cerebral narc. What do you consider youself to be?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Elite.

  10. mollyb5 says:

    Hg. I was watching Netflix and a show on Ted Bundy who murdered the same type of woman over and over again and he says he was always hoping the next one would be fulfilling but always left unfulfilled He sounds and seems to be a narc

    1. K says:

      mollyb5
      He was a narcissistic psychopath.

  11. Tex says:

    Hi HG,

    I’d like to ask why there are so many people online who claim to be narcissists, especially on Quora, who state that the whole hoovering concept is BS. They say that when they discard their partner they feel relief that they no longer have to deal with that worthless loser (their partner) ant they are totally done and will never contact them again. And when the discarded ex goes no contact they don’t even notice or if they notice they are happy this person don’t bother them anymore.

    I find more accurate what you write here – that every narcissist probably will hoover no matter if he discarded you or you escaped. My narcissist hoovered me numerous times after the discard. Maybe right after the discard he felt or thought to himself “I won’t contact her ever again” but it lasted max 2 weeks. And there he was again with “I still care about you, let’s be friends” bla bla bla. And when I finally went no contact it wounded him very much and he still tries to break it.

    So is there a possibility that some narcissists are really different and they really don’t hoover those they discarded because they are done for good and you are painted black forever? Or is it just a narcissitic lie to portrait themselves superior on these forums?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      These people are individuals who are highly narcissistic but not narcissists and are peddling this inaccuracy borne out of a combination of ignorance and the desire to appear important.
      All narcissists will hoover, in accordance with the Hoover Trigger and the Hoover Execution Criteria.

      1. Tex says:

        Thank you, this is very true. I also think that if somebody asked my narcissist if he ever hoovered an ex he would deny it despite he hoovered me and other exes hundreds times. And maybe he would even believe it “oh it was not a hoover, I had to contact her because I had a real problem only she could solve” – or something like that.

  12. MB says:

    HG, In focusing so much on the new dynamic with The Shieldmaiden and the GP with her, I’ve neglected to consider how the new dynamic affected your most recent disengagement. How was it different than disengagements of years past? Thank you in advance for your thoughts.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Disengagement is disengagement.

      1. MB says:

        That sounds like a no. Disengagement wasn’t any different. I thought the new dynamic was to have your needs met without being as hurtful towards others. I think I have misunderstood what the “new dynamic” means.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Disengagement is disengagement, how can it be anything other than disengagement? What you mean is, was the method of disengagement any different?

          1. MB says:

            Yes Sir. Was the method of disengagement and the circumstances around it any different due to your increased awareness and more pro social behavior? Did you handle it in a less hurtful way to the victim?

          2. HG Tudor says:

            I explained it was over and why which whilst hurtful to the individual concerned provided them with an explanation. There was a slight difference in that I was less scathing. I have nearly always provided explanations previously because it is a further opportunity to gain fuel and it also gives the appearance of being ‘reasonable’.

          3. MB says:

            Thank you for answering, HG. I’ll take “less scathing” as a step in the pro social direction.

      2. Jess says:

        Dear HG, just curious about the timeframe between your last golden period and disengagement from the lady before Shieldmaiden. Months? Years?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Do you mean when did the golden period end with the former ipps and when did disengagement occur with regard to the former IPPS?

  13. lisk says:

    Often, “eruptions” occurred when I was doing everything right, when I was doing everything perfectly–just as he had trained me to do via previous eruptions. Truly maddening!

    I’m loving No Contact.

  14. S. Grace says:

    H.G., this article describes my life exactly when I was married to a greater. I am a very emotional empath and I raised two empathic (often scapegoated) ADD children and a third child, with ADHD that my ex treated specifically as the golden child. The third child, now 30 hero- worshiped his dad while my son was growing up. I feel that this child watched and learned from his dad’s narcissistic behavior, just as you described it in your article, towards me. Geographically, I live quite far from my children so I don’t get to interact with them very often. None are married or have children. All of a sudden, through text, the third child seems to have painted me black, projected some labels on my personality that I don’t understand, and seems to have a very limited. but fury-filled style of communication towards me. I admit I stirred things up by texting that I felt he was ignoring me and upset he couldn’t remember to text me happy birthday a few months ago. I was hurt and perhaps came across too aggressive and negative.
    I really don’t know if this son is a narcissist. I feel he is showing narcissistic behavior to me and others. Is painting an empathic mother black part of the whole scheme of black and white triangulated thinking? Perhaps to keep his girlfriend white he is getting negative fuel from me through texts? Have you done any articles about narcissistic sons and their relationships with their empath mothers? The greater narcs I know showed a great devotion to their more docile empath mothers (it appeared). So my relationship doesn’t fit the pattern with my son. THank you for any assistance you might offer H.G. or K or other empaths in the know. Perhaps a discussion might open more doors for people with similar issues on this forum(?).

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I have not written a specific article involving an adult narcissist who is the child of an adult empath, however the principles contained within my work are equally applicable to the needs, perspective and behaviours of this type of narcissist, the role of the parent (who will sometimes be a Non Intimate Primary Source or more usually Non Intimate Secondary Source) and what should be done. If you want confirmation about the status of your son I suggest you organise a Narc Detector Consultation and if you require assistance with regard to the dynamic and what you should do, an audio consultation is the appropriate way forward.

      1. S. Grace says:

        Thank you for taking the time to answer and for yout guidance, H. G. It gives me a lot to think about.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          You are welcome.

    2. K says:

      Hello S. Grace
      The narcissistic dynamic is just as applicable parent/child as husband/wife, perhaps, you could try texting an apology to see if he responds or ignores it, if he ignores it then that would be a silent treatment.

      If he is a narcissist, then you are an NISS in his fuel matrix and your text may have been perceived as wounding (written word is low in quantity) and this could have ignited his fury so his response was done to draw fuel to heal the wound.

      You could try looking for an iterative pattern of behaviour over time or, for quicker results, arrange a consult with HG.

      1. S. Grace says:

        Hi K,
        I appreciate your feedback very much. I “injured” my son by complaining about how little he contacts me via text and I was so frustrated with his lack of communication that I told him I should just go no contact. I briefly blocked communication, but I reconsidered and unblocked him the very next day. To be honest, it was such a short time I don’t think he even realized I had cut off communication.. He did, however, give me a month long silent treatment. I know now he got my text, emails and voice messages during his month long silent trestment towards me. My daughter encouraged him to contact me and it was barely any communication at all by text. A total of 10 words. That’s when I said I didn’t believe I earned the labels he gave me, (hostile, bully, made him feel like a total jerk) I told him some of the things that I liked about his personality and who he was, and that I love him. I got,”Ok” back. I felt even worse so a few days later I texted a very sincere apology and that I’d wait to see if he wanted to repair the relationship some day. That was a few days ago and he’s definitely giving me the silent treatment again.
        I do believe he is a mini version of his greater dad, who almost destroyed me. I’m just wondering if his behavior is perhaps highly narcissistic and he does not have the full disorder. He does seem to have a tiny bit of empathy.
        I guess I wonder if I can ever have a true relationship or if I see him in the future it has to be very non-emotional with no expectations of a real bond. As he was growing up I really felt like he looked at me as a second-class citizen (since he was quite young). I don’t think much has changed through the years.
        Thanks for any comments K or others. I thought I dealt with all the extended familial narcissistic personality disorders. It’s interesting how the disorder ripples out from one generation to another.

        1. K says:

          You are welcome S. Grace
          Your son is not obligated to communicate with you and it looks like your texts were perceived as a criticism (injury) because you were trying to hold him accountable.

          You informed him that you were going no contact and block him (challenge fuel: how dare you assert control), however, it looks like your empathic traits of guilt, compassion and love came to the fore and you unblocked him but he was wounded and gives you a month long ST to punish you for you treacherous behaviour. He is in control, you are viewed black and he wants to draw fuel from you to heal the wound.

          All of your text, emails, voice messages and your daughter’s encouragement were all fuel.

          He sends a ten word text at the behest of his sister (facade maintenance, control and to draw fuel).

          Your response was a combination of positive and challenge fuel:
          (hostile, bully, made him feel like a total jerk) I told him some of the things that I liked about his personality and who he was, and that I love him

          He curt response demonstrates that he’s in control, has drawn fuel, and maintained superiority.

          You felt worse (empathic trait of guilt) so you text a sincere apology (apologies are fuel) but the ST continues. He is drawing thought fuel and he is clearly running the show.

          Looking at you like you are a second class citizen is condescending and representative of contempt and the empathy that you see may be cognitive empathy (false).

          Honestly, it doesn’t look good. NPD is definitely generational. The next time you decide to go NC, don’t tell him just do it. Keep reading so you can get your emotional thinking under control and then you can try and navigate a way to keep the lines of communication open in a way that isn’t hurtful for you or him.

          1. S. Grace says:

            Hi, K,
            Thank you so much for taking the time and effort to give me such a thorough explanation. It is very hard to acknowledge that a child you raised might be a narcissist. Emotional thinking wants to deny the facts. However, your clear and concise review of the situation helps me to face the truth. THere are so many narcs in my childrens’ family tree that I can see that my son could be predisposed through nature and nurture. A greater dad, a mid-range paternal grandpa, two maternal grandparents, two aunts and an uncle were narcissistic influences and role models.
            It makes me feel sad that I failed at protecting him from an early age. Looking back, I can now see where his dad groomed him as The Golden Child and he hero-worship his dad. I don’t know how I might have changed the outcome, even with knowledge of the subject of personality disorders that I knew nothing about back then.
            By having a clear understanding now of who and what I’m dealing with, I can go forward with some tools and knowledge to better handle the situation. I will continue to read and learn about the subject, but now from an even different point of view (parent of a probable narc).
            Again, K, your feedback mean so much to me. Much appreciation and more thanks!

          2. K says:

            You are welcome S. Grace
            And, thank you for your kind words. Don’t be too hard on yourself, it isn’t your fault. Genes play a significant role in the formation of NPD in children. There are 62 narcissists in my family and that encompasses five generations.

            Focus on reading and educating yourself. As you replace your emotional thinking with logic, it will make going forward easier and you will be able to deal with your son in a prosocial manner that may allow you to keep the lines of communication open, if that is what you want, or you can choose no contact. It is all up to you.

            Narcsite has the most accurate information regarding NPD and there are so many supportive people here who will help you. You are not alone and everyone here understands what you are going through. Your situation is heartbreaking and I am truly sorry that your son may be a narcissist. Keep reading and don’t stop.

          3. S. Grace says:

            K. Thank you again for your support and guidance. I am dissppointed that my son seems to tick the boxes for narcissism. Your words of wisdom have helped me see the truth and given me the information I I need in moving forward. I will continue to read and study H. G.’s work (now applying it to a different relational dimension of parent/adult child). I appreciate the way you and other followers of H.G.’s extensive educational resources help your fellow readers by answering our questions and providing us important information.

          4. K says:

            My pleasure S. Grace.
            I understand your disappointment. We love our children and want the best for them and no parent wants to see their child struggle with a medical issue or a disorder. There are a lot of well-informed and caring followers on the blog who are here for you anytime you need support. The HGT library is vast, enjoy the reading.

          5. S. Grace says:

            K,
            it is amazing that you have 62 people in your family tree that are narcissistic in five generations. How did you learn this information? Do you know their stories? I think I have many more than I realized in my family tree based on stories I heard or behaviorsI observed when I was much younger. It is interesting how times change but people’s patterns of behavior stay the same.

          6. NarcAngel says:

            How does she know? K has narc and empath trees and charts all over her walls and ceiling like a serial killer. If the cops ever go there she’s fucked lol.

          7. K says:

            NarcAngel
            Ha ha ha…you forgot my voodoo doll collection!

            The narc tree is a giant sequoia full of narcissists and the empath tree is a little Sweet Gum sapling ((6 adults and 4 children), I am vastly outnumbered!

            My walls are painted with chalkboard paint and there are Roman numerals above my periodic table of elements, a quadratic equation, the Pythagorean theorem, words in french and latin, graffiti, quotes by MLK, Edison, Jessie Jackson, Jefferson, Franklin, Buddha, myriad vocabulary words (edifying is one of them) and two very large calendars (jan and feb) so I can try and keep track of stuff. I enjoy entropy.

          8. S. Grace says:

            K. Now that’s the way to do it! All organized and intellectual in your narc charting. Ha ha.
            Glad I didn’t offend you.

          9. windstorm says:

            K
            Your description of your room with all those chalk boards sounds like Professor Moriarty, the arch villain from Sherlock Holmes. 😳

          10. HG Tudor says:

            That’s elementary. my dear Windstorm.

          11. windstorm says:

            Ha, ha!

          12. K says:

            WS
            Ha ha ha…there is an excellent scene by the pool where Sherlock confronts Moriarty and Moriarty states: I will burn the heart out of you.
            That scene brought back fond memories of my younger days when I threatened my narcissists (threats are challenge fuel). They usually disengaged after I threatened them. Their loss.

            Words are fun and, when I learn new ones, I write them on the walls. My children have very good vocabularies.

          13. S. Grace says:

            NarcAngel,
            Good retort. The vision of the avenging “SuperEmpath” or “Logical thinking Normal,” K, keeping the streets safe against the evil narcs made me laugh
            (K at her daily task)………”Charting today’s narc wounding on my massive wall calender…Aunt Weasel Face Wynona, the family OCD, white glove chore inspector at relatives homes, gets a letter from a fictional elderly support group asking if she needs volunteer help due to her inability to keep up with her housework.
            Somatic narc, 25 year old nephew, “Dildo Dylan” gets hair thinning problems? brochures from a ” concerned” pretend female friend of a friend.
            And annoying brother in law “Flatulent Felix” who loves to get attention by leaving noxious gas fog, complete with loud sound affects, gets an invitation to join the local men’s bowling team, but only if he agrees to wear one of the thick, adult Depends each week in the large box that the invitation is attached to.
            You go, K!
            (Narc Angel, Flatulent Felix is a character based on one of your comments and two of my actual narc family members.)
            Have a light-hearted, narc-abuse-free day all.

          14. K says:

            S. Grace
            I learned all about NPD here and I grew up with roughly half of the total. My mother is one of six children (think Brady Bunch: 3 boys/3 girls) and they all had large families post WWII. The count includes my parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, two sets of grandparents and one set of great grandparents, plus, nieces and nephews. It is awful and I stopped counting because it was just too much work.

            Type: playbook into the search function on the upper right and you can read about the pattern of behaviour specific to narcissists. That will help you identify your family narcissists.

          15. S. Grace says:

            K, I re read Playbook. This time i really concentrated on what H.G. was explaining rather than trying to read a plethora of information as quickly as I could to learn as much as possible in one sitting. It was reassuring as I better understood the information from a more logical viewpoint.
            I am sorry that you have had to deal with so many narcissistic relatives. It sounds like you are well equipped to deal with any and all of them in a no-nonsense fashion if you had to.
            Once I discovered narcissism around 2010, I was a bit shocked each time I applied the narc identifying principles to another person whose toxic behavior I questioned. More and more relatives turned up toxic as I better understood the identifying factors. It’s a process. Learn, identify, go low or no contact to save your mental health. Refuse to play their games. Take back control.
            Thank you for all you do for me and fellow followers of HG’s work.

          16. K says:

            Thank you S. Grace
            The Playbook article is very helpful and, when you read the articles from a position of logic, you process and retain the information better.

            Now, I usually handle all of my IRL narcissists with positive fuel and low contact. It is prosocial and much easier. It isn’t their fault and it is pointless to be angry or take anything personally and I am NC with the ones I do not like.

            You got it! Take back your control. Learn, identify and evade. They are everywhere and it really isn’t worth our mental health playing their games.

            My pleasure S. Grace. I am here for you, all the followers and HG.

          17. S. Grace says:

            K. Great advice. Your approach to handling the narcs out there is intelligent and helpful guidance..

          18. K says:

            Thank you S. Grace.

          19. S. Grace says:

            K., please don’t take my joking about family narcisdism the wrong way. I am in no way making fun of you or your situation. I am angry about my own high number of toxic relatives so i think I was making fun of them and not you or yours. Laughing at my own situation instead of getting more upset or having a good cry seemed kind of stress relieving.
            I hope you understand.

          20. K says:

            S. Grace
            No worries. I have a great sense of humor. We need to laugh more; it is great for mental health. I called my MMRN’s mother a Yeti because she smelled and burped loudly.

  15. Kate says:

    HG,

    How do you think a relationship would go with someone like you and someone who wasn’t willing to be a doormat, waiting on you hand-and-foot, following you around, falling all over herself trying to please you and instead was someone who stood her ground – and would even engage in some spirited arguments with you?

    So curious..

    Thank you for answering.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      They would provide Challenge Fuel and would ultimately be bent to my will.

      1. Presque Vu says:

        ‘They would provide Challenge Fuel and would ultimately be bent to my will.’

        Shield maiden included in that HG?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          There is no challenge being presented to me, all is harmonious.

  16. Fuel on the Shelf says:

    This article is exactly what I needed to read right now. And I will explain why after each of several points.

    “You have always been a giver and you derive pleasure in seeing other people content and happy knowing that you have played a part in it. Whilst it would be lovely to receive some affection from time to time you could live without it, if you are completely honest, if only we did not make everything so difficult.”

    ~This reminds me of the time(s) I would bring him little gifts of his favorite candy each time we saw each other. He used to roll his eyes and express slight irritation at this. Later on I became upset and accused him of trivializing my feelings. He apologized and said he did not mean for it to seem that way and that receiving gifts makes him feel shameful and guilty. You are so accurate how we derive seeing pleasure from others contentment. Deep down you enjoy being doted on….until you don’t anymore. A great example of a contrast.

    “You laugh at such suggestions, since you are far too modest, but inside you do wish that there could be some acknowledgement, some thanks for everything you do. It does not have to be reciprocated, you are content with that role, but if only we would accept this massive advantage that we have and not spoil things, cause arguments and bring discord when there really is no need.”

    ~Good grief this is so accurate and I am not even the IPPS either. What I give is never reciprocated anymore as I bounce back between the “friend zone”. Spoil things and bring discord is a prime example of the birthday party nonsense that hangs in the balance.

    “Perhaps if you came in full of thunder and gave us a slap we might respect you more, because it seems that your dedication and subservience get you none. This thought tumbles through your mind often but you know you could not behave like that, because it is not you, but it does make you wonder what you need to do to gain our respect, our interest and our love once again, like it once was.”

    ~Oh I have done this before. The last time I heard “You are too gracious to me. I do not deserve you” I actually replied “No, you don’t. But….here I am so let’s make the best of this shall we?” (Cue the pitying woe is me apologies and so on…)

    “You may notice certain behaviours which tell you that the storm is about to be unleashed but often you will not know. This is because what triggers the storm is the ignition of our fury which is caused by your criticism of us. Those criticisms are usually more likely to be perceived by us than actual on your behalf and this means you will always struggle to identify them. Believe me, a simple “Hello, how are you?” can trigger the storm. In our world we regard this simple and pleasant greeting as unnecessary questioning and the suggestion that there is something wrong.”

    ~I am very tuned into these behaviors. I distance myself when I start to witness the eerie calm before the storm. However as I have said before, it is like he KNOWS this and knows just what to say or do to reel me back to him. Oh and I recall when saying “hello how are you?” caused a nasty fight. “You are not my wife or my GF, I owe you no response to how I am doing”. Of course this was followed up with the sugar again the very next day with a profuse apology.

    I guess it is all part of the mid range text book huh?

    Nonetheless, thanks for the article HG, it makes me feel SLIGHTLY better to apply each portion of it appropriately to Saint Piano Boy.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You are welcome.

  17. J.G says:

    Hello, H.G. Tudor.

    If I have not misunderstood this part:

    “We need to create drama because we feed on the emotional production generated by you in response to that drama and this gives us fuel. It has gone beyond the point where we could trust your admiration, love and affection, which has become obsolete even if we don’t dismiss it outright. For that admiration, love and affection to look bright and new (even if only for a short time) we must create the drama, the negative side and the conflict for there to be a contrast. This contrast will allow us to re-establish our “good side”, the golden period and things will seem wonderful for a while, but then the stale sensation returns once again. Therefore, the conflict must be resumed. You have no control over this. No matter how much you try to please us, accommodate us and do the things we like, this insatiable need for fuel means that the roller coaster will not stop.

    When you say that: It has gone beyond the point where we could trust his admiration, love and affection, which has become obsolete even if we don’t dismiss it outright.

    You would say that the relationship when consolidated by the Empathic who is the part that has these emotions/fuel diminishes his admiration, love and affection. Although the narcissist does not want this, he needs the fuel to be like at the beginning of the relationship, always exciting, sparkling, brilliant, luminous, resplendent, sparkling. (“Golden Age”).
    When the relationship is consolidated and the fuel is no longer so sparkling, brilliant and luminous, the narcissist finds it boring and rancid. He needs to force through the NEGATIVE CONTRAST / DEVALUATION so that the fuel is reactivated again….
    And this finally becomes Cyclic until finally the victim is decommitted, as there is no final discard.
    You always want to be at the top of the Russian mountain, so you force the descent of this one to take impulse to return to be higher each time.
    It is when you ride a swing, at first you push but as you stop pushing the movement decreases, so you have to push again to get back up. Each time you go up higher and higher, each time with more force until the chains of the swing are broken. And you move on to another attraction until they fix the swing again…
    You guys have a great time in the park that I play, I see.

    WHAT A BAD CONTRAST IS, I DON’T LIKE IT AT ALL, ALTHOUGH I UNDERSTAND THAT FOR YOU IT IS YOUR IMPULSE TO BE UP, BUT FOR YOU TO BE UP, THE OTHERS ARE ALWAYS DOWN, AND THAT IS NO FUN. WHILE YOU LAUGH, WE CRY:(

  18. Laurie says:

    ‘We do not choose to make life difficult, we have to’.
    This is so true of the Narcissist. He [or she] needs fuel like the rest of us need food to survive.
    Their very survival depends on it. This throws up a very controversial question: ‘If the Narcissist has no choice in behaving the way he does, should it not follow that he should be absolved of any blame for his appalling behavior towards others?’
    I can certainly understand that for many victims of Narcissistic abuse this is a step too far.

    When a human being is starving they will do quite literally anything in order to survive. One particularly famous case [or maybe I should say infamous] is the plane that crashed in the Andes mountain range in the early 1970s.
    The survivors ended up eating the bodies of those that had died in the crash in order to save themselves. Many people have condemned what they did, but to condemn is easy when you have never been in that situation. We would all like to believe that we would never do what the survivors of that plane crash did, but until we are tested we don’t know do we?

    Many people will ask what has starvation and cannibalism got to do with NPD? I suppose the point I am making is that the creature in that deep, dark void inside the Narcissist is starving for fuel. It is constant and it is always there. It MUST be fed.
    Without fuel the Narcissist would spiral in to oblivion.
    Would those of us who consider ourselves to be ‘normal’ behave any differently if we were wired up the same way as the Narcissist?

  19. amanda SNapchat says:

    Just wanted to say that HG was right. The narc always comes back. No matter how horrifying the discard. They always return.
    I had a fight with my midranger 2 years ago. He started gaslighting me horribly. I insulted him etc.
    He hung up the phone and I never called him. I realized once he hung up the phone that he was a narc. everything clicked. I never called him.

    He wrote me an email yesterday. Apologizing for everything. No matter how horrible the discard or how much time flies.
    They always return.

    I told a friend about what happened. The ir reaction was: “Wow! if he has been in contact for so long…He must love you…”

    I feel so fucking wise now. The sins of the ignorant.
    I need to run!!!

    Thank you HG for making us wiser, better, stronger

    1. HG Tudor says:

      You are welcome and thank you for sharing your experience.

    2. Mercy says:

      Amanda Snapchat, Wow 2 years! That’s crazy but clearly defines what we learn here. How did it make you feel after that long NC?

  20. Sam Silver says:

    Anyone who has dealt with this type of narcissistic female knows the painful reality of what you describe all too well. Yikes. Your article leaves me wondering if this sickness was formed in you by your mother, H.G.

  21. Leslie says:

    This kind of information needs to be really emphasised, along with all the various types of provocations, deflections, denials, etc.

    What is also needed are the solutions and means for catching narcs out to limit or eliminate their ability to abuse.

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