5 Myths About The Narcissist
I always read views propounded about me and my kind, with considerable interest. I see many intelligent and well-reasoned observations about what we do and why we do it. Many carry considerable force. Other views are purely driven by the understandable anger and hurt that is engendered in people by us, although as I have repeatedly sought to explain, when one operates through emotion, poor decisions are made and the clear picture is not observed. I also come across comments which are made about us which are inaccurate. I am not referring to the disagreement one might have in terms of an ad hominem attack against us. Many people consider us to be arseholes and bastards. I understand that viewpoint, many of my kind would disagree, but it is not that kind of value judgement that makes its way to becoming a myth about us. There are other more important misconceptions. As part of my ongoing work in explaining what we are, why we do what we do and your involvement in this narcissistic dynamic, it is just as important to explain what we are as detail what we are not. With that purpose in mind, I turn to five myths about our kind.
- We have no emotions
This view has gained some traction owing to the fact that my kind function with a considerable emptiness inside of us. The existence of this void can cause people to believe that because we are a shell and a husk that we are devoid of emotions. The fact that we feed off other people’s emotions also supports the view that we have none of our own. We need to steal the emotions that other people experience to enable us to feel.
The fact is that we do experience and feel certain emotions. We experience annoyance, anger and rage. Indeed, the churning fury which is always there beneath the surface, ready to be ignited, is a prevailing emotion of ours. We know boredom, disgust and loathing. We are very familiar with jealousy, envy, shame and hatred. Malice, malevolence, anticipation, contempt, aggression and power are further ones. Our stable of emotions is dominated by negative emotions. These are the ones which have been allowed to develop and that is because the force behind these emotions has been harnessed to allow us to achieve our aims. Our hatred for being devoid of fuel, drives us on to extract it. Our disgust at weakness causes us to always want to maintain superiority and strength. It is these emotions which make us effective and ruthless.
By contrast we do not experience joy or happiness, sadness or regret, serenity or love, remorse or guilt. These are alien to us along with others. We either have never known them or they have been stripped from us in order to allow us to operate with greater effectiveness, free from encumbrance and hindrance. We understand emotions because we want yours directed towards us. We understand how to mimic them and we understand when they should be exhibited (although some of our kind are better at this than others) but ultimately we do experience some emotions, just nowhere near as much as you.
- Copying us infuriates us
No it does not. If we are angry with you and shouting, if you decide to mirror this behaviour, all you are doing is providing us with fuel. If you parrot what we say to you, if there is any emotion attached to it, even if it is said with sarcasm, a sneer or contempt, it is fuel. If you decide to fall silent because we have, we may realise that the silent treatment is not reaping the fuel that we expected, but it does not infuriate us. Instead, we will just switch to a different form of manipulation in order to cause you to provide us with fuel. You find it hard after a while to keep mirroring what we are doing, your emotional capacity is such that it usually breaks through in some form and thus fuel is provided. We also recognise what you are doing and if you are giving us fuel, we will let you continue to mirror us. If you are not, your mirroring is not a criticism therefore there is no wounding, but we will shift to a different behaviour to bring forth the fuel.
- We miss you when you are gone
No, we miss your fuel, not you. That is what we miss most of all. We may also miss the traits that we were able to steal from you and also the residual benefits that you provided. It is something that victims of our kind find very difficult to accept. Surely some of what we said and did was genuine? It seemed that way, so surely it must have been? It must be the case that we liked somethings that you did? We did; the fuel, the traits and the residual benefits. We did not care about whether you were humorous, save that your sense of humour was appropriated by us for the purpose of making us seem better with other people. The radiant smile is only missed because it gave us fuel. Your extensive knowledge about wine was again another trait which made us look better.
Not only is it only these things that we miss when you are gone, the simple fact remains that if we discarded you, we decided that you were no longer worth the effort in keeping around and in most cases, we had identified and seduced a replacement. With this person in place, we focus on them, only turning to you to dole out Malign Follow-Up Hoovers (or Benign ones later when the replacement begins to turn stale). There is little doubt that you loved us with everything that you had, that you thought the world of us and nobody could have done for us what you did, but that is all from your perspective. Once we have discarded you, that all counts for nothing. You became a malfunctioning appliance and you have been replaced. We miss nothing about you.
If you escape, we will miss the three items that I detailed above and indeed we will look to recover them through the Initial Grand Hoover and Follow-Up Hoovers but do not think that our protestations of being unable to live without you, how we cannot imagine another day with you and we miss you so much, have anything to do with you as a person. They do not. We are unable to live without your fuel, we cannot imagine another day without using your traits and miss your residual benefits so much. All of these declarations, pleas, begging gestures and so forth are only designed to recover the three principle reasons we attach you. You can tell yourself that we miss you terribly if it makes you feel better but you are misleading yourself.
- We hate being alone
We need people. There is no doubt about that. We need people because we need the three principle benefits, chief amongst which is fuel, but that is not the same as saying we hate to be alone. In this instance, there is a degree of truth in the above statement but it requires considerable qualification. If we have been well-fueled we are able to be alone, engage in solitary activities and spend time in our own company without difficulty. Of course, the longer this goes on, eventually our fuel level drops and we will need to seek out people, but we do not hate being alone in such a situation.
Furthermore, the advantages of technology mean that although we may not be physically proximate to somebody, the advantages of Skype, text messages, telephone calls and even hand-written letters allows us to be on our own but in contact with many fuel sources. Add to this Thought Fuel and you have a situation whereby we can be physically isolated but with such connections we can manage perfectly well extracting all of these variable fuel types.
Remove such connections however and in a situation when our fuel levels are already low and we are physically isolated with no means of contacting people and that is when you shall see that we hate to be alone.
- We have a conscience
We do not. We think only of ourselves, our needs and how each situation can benefit us. We may appear to exhibit a conscience in order to con people and this is something more witnessed with the Mid-Range and Greater Narcissist, in order to fit in to a situation and people’s expectations but we have been created without a need for a conscience. If we had one, we would not be able to trample on people in the way we do. We would not be able to always be moving forward, never caring for what has gone before us. If ever you witness a situation where one of our kind appears to have had our conscience pricked, all it means is that we see an advantage in pretending that this is the case and we wish to dupe you and others for our own benefit.
13 thoughts on “5 Myths About The Narcissist”
HG, you really need to have a random conversation/blog entry/comment where we observe narcs, and can discuss through media/news/life etc
I searched ages to find somewhere this fits… so apologies if it doesn’t. (Film/music/actor/politician/news) etc
I just watched vice.
Dick Cheney in a slow methodical voice at first captivated me. There is power in calmness. This is a guy we don’t know internally who is happy to be invisible. His wife could be called an opportunistic snake in his ears. She desires upward mobility as much as him, she is powerful in her support. If he’s a narc – he never cheated on her in the film at least. I liked the fact there was nothing subtle, 7/11, climate change, isis – were all addressed.
Cheney, quiet, observing, watching from the wings, sets fire to the world. Proclaims war on Iraq .. for financial gain? Intelligence showed no direct links to Iraq over 9/11.
My god he’s a shadowy puppeteer though!
We swim on our own emotions through the film as we remember what happened ‘shock and awe’ .. I won’t forget that night I saw on the BBC when Iraq was bombed before sadams statue was torn down. ( my brother in law is in the Royal Engineers – he’s done many tours of Iraq and Afghan )
George w bush is a likeable buffoon, but Cheney’s moral values with his lesbian daughter became an ethical political noose to him.
After all this. I still cannot tell if he’s a Greater Narc?
Christian Bale though! Great acting, really threw himself into it.
HG, I’m so curious… do you see yourself in cheney? He is private and was invisible to many, a master puppeteer!! Though he loved his wife and children, no mistresses, he adored his wife.. maybe she was a narc too??
I am pleased you enjoyed the film, it is very good and Bale is excellent as ever.
There are similarities between Cheney and I with regard to the wielding of influence behind the scenes.
I saw similarities too HG that’s why I asked your thoughts on it.
Is he a Narc?
I never saw a fuel matrix, or using his children and wife as an extension of himself. He protected his daughter from a media onslaught. He changed for his wife.
I’m so confused.
He got high from the power, he manipulated – high narc traits?
I have questions, because all narcs cheat – are abusers – are they not?
HG, what about “the narc is actually incredibly insecure, and the vain, boastful version of him is just an act – it’s his false self.”
Is that a myth or is that true? Are all the conceited remarks genuine? Is he really THAT self confident? Surely he cannot think he is THAT good looking, etc.
The first sentence is partially accurate, there is more to it than that.
I often felt like Narcissist are chasing ghosts. They would go on a crusade against a person who not only did not intend to gain control over the narc, but wouldn’t care about doing such a thing, even if they could. The narcs insecurity and paranoia causes their “security systems” to misfire all the time and makes them waste precious time and resources on a threat that isn’t one. I suppose this can also result in the upper echelon narcs being especially driven, but it is fascinating to me that all of this can ever work at all.
Thanks HG. I know their insecurity is more complex. Referring to the superficial aspect of insecurity vs vanity and conceit, does my narc *REALLY* believe he is as beautiful as he sometimes claims to be? He is handsome yes, but it’s not like he just walked off the cover of GQ. Far from it.
HG – have you ever known a narc to have empathy for animals and children , on at least a basic enough level (the narcs that lack malice at least)? Even if there isn’t much empathy as the child ages.
I realize you say it is cognitive empathy only – is there no wiggle room at least in those departments (kids and animals)?
I may be confusing a lack of malice/intent to harm , with empathy.
I am trying to figure out whether someone from my past is a narc or not. He is a veterinarian and he does seem to like and care for his dog and animals in general. He brings his dog to his work place and often talks about him with fondness that seems to be genuine. But I know all that could be facade. He chose not to work with animals directly, he works for the government instead for animal related affairs. Very tricky. He does seem to have genuine empathy although the narc attitudes are there too, Tricky one.
Good evening – hope all is going well with you. Just wanted to tell you I really enjoyed this article – so much in fact that I took a screenshot of #3 so I can read it when I start to feel sadness, shame, missing IT, etc…all those wonderful emotions. Thank you!
You are welcome.