The Victim´s Cloak
I know there are those who do not like that word. They regard it as stigmatising and a hindrance to recovery. One understands such an approach, but nevertheless it is the appropriate word for those who have encountered our kind in the narcissistic dynamic. What does victim mean?
‘a person harmed, injured, or killed as a result of a crime, accident, or other event or action’
There is no denying this would apply to someone who has been ensnared by us.
‘a person who is tricked or duped’
Equally applicable. After all, it is the very essence of our behaviour that we trick or dupe you.
‘a person who has come to feel helpless and passive in the face of misfortune or ill-treatment’
Accurate again. Of course not everybody may feel this way, but many will readily recognise it, even if they prefer not to announce it.
Accordingly, these various definitions are valid and accurate to those who have been involved with our kind, be it romantic, social, familial or otherwise.
It remains the case, however, that when it comes to the issue of victimhood and who gets to wear The Victim’s Cloak that once more our kind exhibits our well known hypocrisy. We regard you as the victim (we have to as this is part of the maintenance of our control and need for superiority) but we also then look to remove that victim status from you.
The various schools of narcissism approach this double standard in differing ways, in respect of how we stamp you with ‘Victim’ but then deny you any use or recognition of it. We both adorn you with the cloak and then remove it in some way.
The Lesser Narcissist
The Lesser treats you as a victim because you are beneath him or her. You are considered useless, in the way and an annoyance and your dithering, inability to second guess the Lesser results in a swift ignition of fury and its manifestation as usually heated fury. You are made to feel the victim, by being lambasted verbally, physically assaulted, sexually assaulted, demeaned, having your property destroyed and seeing others you cared about drawn into the whirlwind.
The Victim’s Cloak is rapidly placed around your shoulders through this treatment of you but then the Lesser immediately rips it away, shreds it and hurls it to one side so you cannot use it. Your victimhood is created through an aggressive act or acts. However, you are not allowed to retain the mantle of victim because the Lesser takes the firm view that whatever treatment has been applied against you, well, you deserved it.
“She was back chatting me so she got a slap.”
“He was lousy in bed so I told him how useless he is.”
“The house was a mess, so I smashed it up so she really had something to clean up.”
You are denied the status of victim because in the mind of the Lesser you brought the treatment on yourself. The fact you deserve it negates the sympathy, compassion and understanding that would ordinarily be afforded to a victim.
“Leave her be, she deserves what she got, quit fussing over her.”
“It’s for his own good, so he will get it right next time.”
“Stop mollycoddling that boy, he has to learn and I am teaching him.”
Of course, this conduct by the Lesser of branding you the victim through your mis-treatment and then the wrenching away of your cloak of victimhood is all part of the further control and manipulation. His knee-jerk response will have generated fuel from your reaction to being struck or shouted at, but then, as the victim, you are usually afforded concern, sympathy and help by others. The Lesser may find himself being triangulated by a concerned relative, friend or bystander. This erodes his control and unconsciously his own innate status as a victim comes to the fore. He does not recognise this. After all, he does not want the cloak to wear for himself, he is not a victim, hell no, he is better than that, but just as he believes he does not want that cloak, you are not allowed to wear it either and thus he will deny you any entitlements associated with being classed as a victim, purely because his own inherent victim status (albeit unrecognised) makes its presence known.
Even a Lesser who belongs to the Victim cadre does not consider himself as a victim. Unconsciously he does, but he considers his preferential treatment owing to his poor health, dodgy back or sheer bad luck, an entitlement of his. He will not regard himself as a victim, but someone who ought to be looked after, although of course he is playing the card of Victim cadre extensively. Why play this card? Simple. To stop you being allowed to be the victim. You have hurt your hand and cannot cook? Too bad, he is hungry and not able to walk, so you still have to do something. You feel faint? He has a fractured eyelash and you need to get him to the hospital quick smart. But remember, he is not a victim, you are, but you do not get any sympathy, consolation or help for being that victim. Thus you receive the cloak but you are not allowed to wear it and it is ripped up and thrown away.
The Mid Range Narcissist
The Mid-Ranger will treat you as a victim because they are the perpetrator of various abuses and manipulations against you. Whilst heated fury does manifest with the Mid Range Narcissist (usually the Lower Mid Ranger), the manifestation of fury is most usual through cold fury. Thus you receive the Present and Absent Silent Treatments, the smearing, the gas lighting, the Cold Shoulders and the The Incredible Sulk to name but a few of the manipulations that are available to the Mid Range Narcissist.
The Mid Ranger treats you as the victim, as these abuses are doled out against you and one might expect that the array of emotional, financial, sexual and most of all psychological abuses that the Mid Ranger uses would mean that The Victim’s Cloak would settle snugly about your shoulders.
The Mid Ranger plucks that cloak from you and places it about his or her shoulders. It is their cloak. You are not allowed the trappings of being a victim because you are not entitled to support or concerned attention. No, that must be directed towards the Mid Ranger. Whilst he rejects the notion of weakness that is often associated with the status of being a victim, he believes he is the victim.
“I cannot believe I was passed over for promotion. I have been discriminated against and I am the best candidate.”
“I cannot begin to tell you how terribly she treats me.”
“I am never invited to see the grand children by my daughter. I don’t know what I have done wrong, but she is intent on making my life miserable.”
The Mid Range Narcissist wants the cloak. It is his by right and he wants everything that goes with it. He wants the Pity Party, the Commiseration Conference and the Sympathy Symposium. He is the victim don’t you know? Show some support, offer a concerned look, ask how he is, suggest a way of helping, agree that he is hard done to, down trodden and treated appallingly and after everything that he has done.
Tell the Mid Range that she deserves to be treated better, that she is well-regarded and this person who has not done what they wanted is an awful, despicable person and an abuser.
The Mid-Ranger always plays the victim even though they are the perpetrator. You are the victim because you are the one who is abused, but the Mid Ranger will never see it that way and he or she will not let anybody regard it that way as she or he pouts and twirls in their Victim’s Cloak. You can never be afforded the ‘benefits’ that should be afforded to the true victim.
Should the Mid-Ranger be of the Victim Cadre also, then order plenty of tissues because he or she will grab that Victim Cloak from you and grimacing, stitch it onto themselves, passing needle and thread through aching skin so that they can never be parted from that cloak.
The Greater will never consciously consider him or herself as a victim. Never. After all, we are the hunters, the predators, the ones that targets and finds our prey. Not only that, we need only look at what we do, what we achieve and how we are regarded and this underlines and reinforces that we are not victims.
We do however utilise the notion of being a victim to drive our behaviours but we do not label it as being a victim. No, instead we consider it to be based on revenge. We recognise that the world is a treacherous place, full of untrustworthy charlatans and liars who come with great promises and then who fail to deliver. The simpering and fawning lick spittles who flatter to deceive, although we naturally see through all of that. Yet still, that behaviour, unwarranted and unjustified means we could consider ourselves victims (if we truly would lower ourselves in such a way). However, we are above that and once we were victims (although we see no reason to be reminded of that fact because we escaped it) means that you, him, her and everyone else will be punished if you even hint at returning us to that almost forgotten state of victimhood.
We have no desire to wear The Victim’s Cloak. It does not belong to us. It is not our size, colour and is made of material that is inferior to us. You are absolutely regarded as the victim because this game we play with you (and one which we revel in) means you have to be the victim because that means we win and you lose. Oh, this cloak is yours alright but just like the Lesser and the Mid-Range narcississt we will deny you any right to wear it. Why should you be afforded any sympathy, support or help? You should not and here’s why ; you deserve to be punished, you have nothing to complain about.
We have given you the world by your association with us and therefore how on earth can you have any basis for complaint? You brought this treatment on yourself, so not only do you deserve it (akin to the view point of the Lesser Narcissist) it goes further than that, it is right and just for you to be treated that way. Should the criminal be afforded sympathy when his sentence is announced? No. Should the morally repugnant member of the community be afforded kindness for his heinous behaviour? No. Then, neither shall you.
You are denied the accoutrements of the status of victim. You are the victim, absolutely but you will not wear that cloak. It does not even reach your shoulders as it does with the victim of the Lesser Narcissist. We forbid it coming anywhere near you. We are the supreme judge of your fate and we always apply the maxim of
‘commodum ex injuria sua nemo habere’
Did you not know that has been stitched into the lining of the Victim’s Cloak? Of course, this maxim is not applicable to us.
10 thoughts on “The Victim´s Cloak”
he always use the typical MR victimhood quotes, especialy about my predecessor, according to him, he was an angel and she the devil. i truly believe that you have to be two to ruin a relationship, and told him that i didn’t want to badmouth her since i never had her version of the story. i imeditelly received a present silent treatment.
(i came to learn latter that she was an angel and he stabed her on the back).
This has been very self-stagmatizing (self-shaming) because I was half bananas when I figured out what the hell happened, felt a touch better meeting some seemingly normal people that experienced relatable dynamics.. Then I realized some of them were truly bananas or were the true or at least co-narcissists in their dynamics! It’s been (so far) exhausting, emotional, enlightening.. A physician (friend after this many years) asked me almost bluntly if I’d figured out my shortcomings which were contributing to relationship failures. This is the stigma. I look normal, have a normal job, but I get a grade F in life and here is Mr. Whatever he thinks he is superior, asking me if I figured out why I’m a mess. It took self restraint to NOT ask him if he knew how to fuck his former wife that left him and re-married almost immediately. I mean, he’s attractive, successful.. Is it not fair to ask if he can’t fuck his wife properly? What is wrong with him? He looks good, I look okay. Why do we point at one another with such judgment and yet fail to be introspective before pondering others failures as we perceive them to be? Why can’t we look at what is right with someone and not what is wrong? Victim denotes flawed. My flaws are that I am accommodating and kind? It’s all so fucked up. It really is. More frequently I find myself saying, “It is a private matter” and questions cease. I don’t need to explain it to people. I used self restraint with Mr. “I am Perfect” in the moment—but it was absolutely re-visited.
We can’t be victims. Targets, I will concede.
We are vessels of absolute love and compassion.
We are built with the kind of tough required to weather any storm.
We are the ones that bounce back, again and again, regardless of our pain.
We are true warriors.
I love us! You and yours need us.
We are everything.
No. I’m not a victim. I’m a sassy little firecracker who can never stay down! And be warned all that would try, that I will always rise from the flames as unbreakable!
So there! 😉
Soon to be sparkling,
i have a theory to why our kinde is mistaken as to be good people or kind or any other compliment, and according to me it actually comes from a selfish place here is my theory:
lately i’v been observing my self about this empathy thing, and i think that the problems is with my imagination, if i imagine an apple for exemple i can almost touch the texture of it, smel its frangrance, and have its taste on my tong, and i don’t even chose to imagine, if you tel me an apple, i will get all that. it is the same for empathy when i see a person suffering i imidiatelly imagine my self in that condition and just by immagining it, i have all the pain that comes with it, and then, it is not just me helping them solve their problems it becomes my probleme and i need to solve it to ease my pain not theirs. the same goes for happines i love to see people happy because it make me happy that’s it.
tell me if i’m wrong , it is just a theory and just what i could observe in my self.
Hello liza 🤗
I couldn’t agree more!
It is why being around crowds can be so overwhelming!
thank you Stbs!
then i will test my theory on my family friends and whomever has the misfortune to talk to me during the next month.
Hello liza 🤗
Your thoughts gave me so much further thought!
With jetlag removed and a clearer head, how interesting!
Maybe we empaths are indeed selfish as yes, we see someone in pain and we have to fix it. It’s so much and we have to try to help.
Help who? Them, yes of course! But it does in turn, help ourselves.
We see pain, we hurt, we soothe their pain, they feel better, ultimately then we do too!
Are we doing it for us or them??
I’d have to say for them, because we cared enough to want to help them in the first place and we weren’t down until we noticed that they were down. So others are definitely our motivator in the first place.
But we do feel happiest when we make others happier so there ‘is’ something self related in there.
But still, to be a person that has to help others is essentially a very good thing and there’s no bad in that.
thank you for your validation !
i was strugeling with all the good people bad people issue, and the fact that i could sens that idon’t want to hurt others, but then it just my problem i can’t figure out any objective reason to call myself good and call a narc bad, then i realised that i’m selfish, just my slfishness hapens to be prosocial.
so now i don’t have to classifie people as good or bad, just suitable for me , not suitable for me, it may be weird but i was verry relieved.
i was caught in a dilema, i felt that i need to hate him and remember the pain inorder to avoid being fooled by him again but at the same time i couldn’t obectively justifie hating him, now i just have to remember that he is not suited for me that it, i don’t need to cast any judgment on his personality.
I’ve always loved this post….its crucial for understanding ensnarement by a mid-ranger…so thanks HG.
I’m heavily influenced by music and lyrics. Always have been. In the past music that hinted of narcissistic dynamics (which is almost any song on the radio) would trigger longing for the MRN, I actually broke NC twice due to this. But not anymore, its just a case study into popular culture normalizing narc behavior, and maybe also therapeutically helping me through song. I hear these lyrics and understand myself more and feel stronger.
My latest lyric finds:
“I’ve been having dreams. Splashin’ in a summer stream. Trip and I fall in….I wanted it to happen. My body turns to ice….Crushin’ weight of paradise. Solid block of gold…lying in the cold…I feel right.. at.. home….” Trampoline by SHAED & Zayn.
“It’s crazy when the thing you love the most is the detriment….let that sink in. When the hand you wanna hold is a weapon and….you’re nothin’ but skin. I keep digging myself down deeper, I won’t stop ’til I get where you are. I keep running when both my feet hurt, I won’t stop ’til I get where you are. I would’ve followed all the way to the graveyard.” Graveyard by Halsey (seriously wonder if she is empath/co-d, not the only lyrics of hers that resonate)
On a positive note, lyrics that now apply to me thanks to this blog:
“Another round of bullets hits my skin…well, fire away ’cause today, I WON’T LET THE SHAME SINK IN. I am brave, I am bruised, I am who I’m meant to be, this is me. And I know that I deserve your love, CAUSE THERE’S NOTHING I’M NOT WORTHY OF.” This is me by Kesha
You are welcome.