Why Does The Narcissist Blow Hot and Cold? Part One



“I don’t get it, one minute he is all smiles and cuddles and the next he acts like he doesn’t know me.”

“I don’t know what is going on. Earlier in the week he wanted to hang out with me and now when I call to make arrangements he doesn’t seemed bothered.”

“He was in a foul mood and then suddenly he was being really nice to me and I have no idea why.”

Familiar sentiments? Most likely they are when you are dealing with our kind. Why is it that one moment everything is wonderful and the next it all goes wrong? Why are there periods of elation and then periods of erosion? Why are we so inconsistent in the way that we behave with you? Let’s begin with the Intimate Partner Primary Source, the most common recipient of this behaviour.

The Intimate Partner Primary Source (“IPPS”)

Whether you are our wife, boyfriend, partner or lover, the IPPS will find themselves subject to this vacillating behaviour.

The Seduction Golden Period

Once you have been installed as the primary source, following your seduction as an intimate partner secondary source, you reap the rewards of being our primary source of fuel, the apple of our eye and the light of our life. There will be only the heat of manufactured passion, the warmth of apparent caring and the fire of fabricated desire during this period.

During this golden period our fury (which is expanded on below) is in effect capped and therefore does not manifest. This ‘capping’ occurs for two reasons. The first is that you are supplying us with positive fuel and therefore if you happened to criticise us, we are able to brush it off because (a) we are being well fuelled in a positive manner and (b) we regard you as ‘white’ ; you are wonderful and our mind set is such that the criticism does not have the same effect. Secondly, even if we began to react to your criticism, we exert control because we do not want to lose you at this juncture and we want the positive fuel to keep flowing (we do not want your negative fuel at this point). There is also the issue that you are highly unlikely to cause a criticism because of the way you are responding to us during this golden period.

Accordingly, it is extremely rare to see us blow hot and cold during seduction for these reasons. You might find a reaction from a Lesser Narcissist who is criticised early in the golden period, who cannot exert sufficient control and accordingly he erupts, but it is extremely rare.

The Devaluation Period

This is when the alternating between hot and cold commences and there are a variety of reasons why this happens.

The first occurs in The Instant and is as a consequence of the ignition of fury. If you say (or more likely) do something which is perceived by us as criticism, it wounds us. Bear in mind that it may not seem like a criticism from your perspective, indeed you are usually at a complete loss as to why we have reacted as we have done. The blowing hot and cold which occurs in The Instant is naturally your fault.

Whatever it is that you have said or done, it has been perceived as a criticism. This wounds us and our self-defence mechanism is for the churning fury that is ever present, to be ignited. This happens more often with Lesser and Mid-Range narcissists because those members of our brethren are unable to control their fury with the same skill and discipline as the Greaters.

This ignited fury may manifest as heated fury as we erupt and call you names, break things, slam doors, hit you and such like. Accordingly, all was going well and you cause a criticism and our volcanic rage erupts as the situation becomes super-heated. Alternatively, this ignited fury emerges as cold fury whereby you are subjected to a baleful glare, being cold shouldered and treated to silent treatments. Thus the situation becomes ice-cold.

In the blink of an eye, you have unbalanced the situation through your criticism. Our reaction is based on self-defence. Since you are in the devaluation period, the ‘cap’ on  our fury that existed during the seduction period has been removed. Accordingly, it is only a matter of time before you do or say something which ignites our fury and boom, we react. One minute we are enjoying a family film and the next we have thrown the popcorn across the room and are glaring at you from our armchair.

The reason the fury ignites is to cause an intense reaction so that you react to it and provide us with fuel (or others do who witness the explosion). Usually, the ignited fury is directed towards the person who has caused the criticism by way of punishment and the need to cause them to atone for their transgression. By insulting you, striking you, spitting at you, shoving you, glaring at you, sitting and sulking we are aiming to prompt an emotional response from you. This provides us with fuel. Once you provide us with fuel, the wound you have caused is healed and our ignited fury abates. Consequently, we then carry on as if nothing has happened. Accordingly, in the space of a few minutes we go from calm to furious and then calm again. We have blown hot and cold and of course it has to be your fault because we are never at fault in our minds.

That is how we blow hot and cold in an instant and whilst theoretically this could happen at any stage in the narcissistic cycle it happens most with the IPPS during the devaluation.

We also blow hot and cold with you over an elongated period because of the need for contrast.  Isaac Newton’s Third Law stated

” For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”

Whilst this was directed in the field of physics, this is of equal application to the narcissistic dynamic. We have to create contrast in order to derive the most potent fuel. If we dig a ditch which is ten feet deep and shove you into it, you will probably be hurt as you fall into the ditch. If we build a tower thirty feet high next to the pit and push you from the top of the tower, then you have a forty foot drop and will suffer greatly owing to this starker contrast.

When we are seducing you, we are devaluing someone else.

When we are devaluing you, we are seducing somebody else.

When we allow you a Respite Period during the devaluation it is because we have turned against somebody else and thus we see you as ‘white’ once again.

When we start devaluing you again it is because we are savouring the resumption of seduction of another or perhaps starting a seduction anew with a new appliance.

It is all about creating that contrast.

If there are times where we have walked in to the house and we begin berating you from the moment we arrive you are at a loss to even identify what you could have done to cause this. The belittling commenced the moment we stepped through the doorway. What has happened is that we have been with someone else (not necessarily in an intimate way, it might have been an Non-Intimate Secondary Source, a friend) and having gained their positive fuel, it remind us of why we are devaluing you. This causes us to continue to regard you as ‘black’ and therefore we are unpleasant to you as soon as we first appear and continue being so until your emotional response fuels us and we stop.

If we are driving and we cut up another driver who we then pulls up alongside us and we swear at him and threaten to get out the car and stamp on his trachea until it bubbles, we gain negative fuel from the other driver’s frightened or upset or angry response. We can then turn to you (even in devaluation) and smile and kiss you on the cheek, to enjoy your contrasting positive response to the negative one which we have just obtained.

Accordingly, when we are seducing somebody else, we seem them as ‘white’ and thus you are ‘black’ because we need the contrast between the two of you. The IPSS we are seducing is seen as wonderful (and all the more because we despise you) and you as the IPPS are seen as awful (and all the more because we adore the IPSS). The contrast makes the fuel from both sources all the more potent.

If we decide to give you a Respite Period it may be because a NISS has been disloyal and we have devalued them, so we see your dogged loyalty as a good thing for a short time. It might be because the IPSS we have been cultivating is not delivering as we expected and whilst our disappointment in them is not sufficient to cause us to devalue them it means we will park them for the time being  and you gain by getting a Respite Period.

All of the various appliances that we are connected to have an effect on one another and most of all on  the IPPS.

Thus during the devaluation period you will find us behaving “okay” with you when we are neither especially pleasant or horrible, but then suddenly we shift to being unpleasant and then a Respite Period comes out of nowhere. It will appear arbitrary and inconsistent to you but there is a logic behind it.

The Discard

What about the period post discard when you were once the IPPS and you have been demoted from  that heady position? We once adored you and now we do not even acknowledge you. This is because we are obsessed with the new primary source and have no interest in you anymore. This is why if you stay out of our spheres of influence and the Hoover Execution Criteria is not met, you hear nothing from us in the immediate aftermath of discard.

Then, some time later, we appear with smiles and compliments as we apply a Benign Follow-Up Hoover. Our approach to you has altered again and you have done nothing. In such an instance we are now devaluing your replacement and we want some delicious  hoover fuel from you. You triggered a hoover, the Hoover Execution Criteria was met and thus we come after you for that positive hoover fuel. Deny it us and we may suddenly shift in an instant to a malign hoover, again you are puzzled as to why our attitude towards you has altered so quickly, but from our perspective it makes sense. If you have rebuffed our hoover and we have decided against withdrawal, the easiest way to gain some fuel from you (to heal the wound caused by your rebuffing criticism) is to dole out a malign hoover and seek negative fuel from you.

If you approach us when we are infatuated with our replacement, you will receive a malign hoover (if not ignored as explained in The Immediate Aftermath ) because at that time your replacement is regarded as ‘white’ thus you remain ‘black’ as the opposite and equally strong reaction.

We blow hot and cold because of the ignition of our fury in the instant and also because of this constant need to create contrasts and accord with the principle of opposite and equal reactions. This is why we engage in black and white thinking, it enables us to create the contrast that our needs demand and consequently causes us to blow hot and cold with you. Sometimes the hot appears as passion and desire, other times as rage, sometimes the cold appears as indifference and disinterest and other times it is a silent treatment and ignoring you. So long as there is a contrast, we will blow hot and cold.

The effects of blowing hot and cold are as follows:-

  1. First and most importantly the gathering of fuel. This is to power the construct and also in certain instances to heal the wound caused by your criticism;
  2. To maintain control over you;
  3. To underline our omnipotence by being able to control you;
  4. To emphasise our notion of superiority;
  5. To disorientate you so you give fuel and fail to comprehend what is happening;
  6. To create an apparent lack of consistency which prevents your understanding and adds to your confusion;
  7. To prevent you from being able to move forward because you are emotional, confused and disorientated.

All of the above fits together so that there will be wheels within wheels as we blow hot and cold with you.

Part Two examines why we blow hot and cold with the Intimate Partner Secondary Source, the Dirty Secret Intimate Partner Secondary Source and the Non-Intimate Secondary Source which includes the familial narcissistic dynamic.

62 thoughts on “Why Does The Narcissist Blow Hot and Cold? Part One

  1. Bibi says:

    HG, while waiting in the drive thru at Starbucks (so Middle America and white, I know) a dude came on the radio talking about how he had this ‘amazing date with this girl’ and now 2 days later she would not answer his texts or calls. ‘I don’t get it! We had such a great time? Why won’t she respond?’

    I wanted to shout, ‘She has you on the shelf, buddy! She is a narcissist who is playing you. It will never work out!’

    Yet, instead I am sure he will be given lots of bland advice that is off the mark. And here I was screaming ‘NARCSITE!’ as the barista handed me my tall chai latte.

    At least you understand my insanity.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      I agree with you and it demonstrates that need to share my information and the fact that so much useless information is being circulated.

  2. Pati says:

    All I did was go out shopping with my daughter and he didnt talk to me for 3 days. I believe this to be the case that he wasnt included or that he wanted me not to go .HG I found this to be wrong but in his eyes he was right . Is that correct?

    1. K says:

      Going out shopping with your daughter may have been perceived as wounding hence the three day Silent Treatment. These articles are very helpful and you may find your answers there.


      1. Pati says:

        Thank you

        1. K says:

          My pleasure Pati
          Contrariwise is one of my favorites.

    2. lisk says:

      Did you spend any of his money? If so, how much?

      His “hard-earned” money could be the trigger.

      1. NarcAngel says:

        Why was he mad that she went shopping?

        Perhaps she failed to purchase anything for him. Or he just remembered while she was out that once 3 years ago she made herself a coffee and didn’t ask him if he wanted one. Possibilities are endless but one thing is sure: he doesn’t need a reason – he just decides. That’s why the time spent pondering such questions (although natural for us) are basically a waste of time and would be better spent pondering such things as: Can you smell a fart in space?

        1. Pati says:

          NA you make a whole lot of sense thank you!

        2. Bibi says:

          Just a random off the cuff question–is anyone else here not seeing the little pics/images thingies? Where did they go? I cannot see them!

          My Bardot image is hidden! 🙁

          1. NarcAngel says:

            Who said that?

            Jk. Not sure when this happened to you Bibi, but everything is fine on my end this morning.

          2. lisk says:

            I’m not seeing them when I read in Safari. I see them when reading WordPress on my iPhone.

          3. K says:

            They are gone with the wind Bibi.

          4. zwartbolleke says:

            Yes Bibi with me as well, since a few days no images anymore.
            Not too sad however that I don’t have to see that tangerine short and the legs anymore 🙂

          5. Bibi says:

            Haha, NA. Thanks for letting me know. It must be my settings or something weird.

          6. FoolMe1Time says:

            I can still see mine Bibi?

          7. Bibi says:

            Seems like there is a mix of some who can see and some who can’t. I liked them, even if dumb b/c those pics added color and character. Plus my Bardot image sums up how I feel about life with her bored expression.

            I remember back in the old days where I was a yellow square the color of puke. But then someone told me my square was beautiful–as though I was forever stuck within a Golden Period.

            Alright, enough rhapsodizing.

          8. K says:

            I used them to keep track of Pamela (and others like her) and her numerous name changes.

        3. lisk says:

          It’s just conversation, NA. And also a real possibility.

          Plus, I don’t find my curiosity—or anyone’s—a waste of time at all.

          1. Sweetest Perfection says:

            Lisk, of course it’s just conversation. It’s just that after learning about them, you realize that no matter how much you want to find a reason, it could be the slightest meaningless piece of shit -a fart in space, quoting NA- without any sense at all, so it’s better to just not even wonder. I realized saying anything, ANYTHING could offend my narc. I used to go after him asking what did I say?? After a while, I stopped giving a shit. He materialized in front of my eyes as a little spoilt child that had a rage tantrum because he wanted ice cream but then not that flavor but then he got the flavor but still was crying because he wanted it earlier and then he threw it on the floor saying I don’t want it anymore! … just a pathetic cry for attention. That’s my narc: look at me look at me look at me!!

          2. lisk says:

            I actually wasn’t looking for “the” reason.

            I was bringing up a point that it could be one of the many irrational reasons that they tend to bring up, one that even HG maybe has mentioned in the past as a thing that narcs do (dumping all their largesse onto you, then complaining that you take too much, etc.) hence my “quotes” in my original post.

        4. Gypsy Heart says:

          Why am I always drinking coffee that could be spewed when I read your comments? You always make my day NA! Love your query!

        5. Bubbles 🍾 says:

          Dear NarcAngel,
          I’m rolling on the floor laughing here … I need someone to pick me up 🤣
          I have tears of laughter, thanks for that …… phew 😅
          Luv Bubbles xx 😘

        6. Whitney says:

          Oh NarcAngel so true I wish I knew this wisdom while I was in the midst of it.

          I was constantly uncomfortable and confused by his moods. If not for HG I’d have no idea how readily they are wounded.

          I worked up the courage to sweetly ask him the reason for his behavior and his response was “you’re full of shit” and “okay. fuck off”. It made me laugh hysterically because it had no relation to what I’d just said. I laughed so much he was amused by himself (you know when someone thinks you’re funny but you didn’t mean to be). After that I said it at random times as a joke “Ok. Fuck off” and “You’re full of shit”.

          These people are wacky and sick

        7. Bibi says:

          As for farts, I have wondered if HG holds them all in during the Golden Period and then once during devaluation it’s like an angry duck lives in his pants. That’s how you know where you stand with a narcissist.

          1. FoolMe1Time says:

            Oh Bibi thank you for my morning laugh! Lol. Just the thought of HG walking around doing this has me in stitches! Hahaha! What a way to start a Monday! 🤗🙃

      2. Pati says:

        My daughter treated .me.
        He doesnt mind that I spend his money.
        I think he got jeaulous that I spent time with our daughter because they get along so great. It’s all about control. It doesnt make sense. They see things so differently. Also I think because he wasnt included and maybe was wounded

        1. lisk says:

          Thanks for answering, Pati.

          Your explanation actually makes sense as to why a narc would behave that way, i.e, makes sense in Narcworld.

          1. Pati says:

            Exactly, from their perspective, that’s how they are but ,from my perspective he is living in the stone age.

          2. lisk says:

            Perhaps narcissistic behavior DOES stem from Stone Age circumstances.

            I wonder, do humans really even emotionally evolve?!

          3. HG Tudor says:

            There is a huge tension between our evolutionary selves (which have largely remained unchanged for 30 000 years) and our modern selves (the world which has arisen in the last 150 years). Empaths and narcissists exist in the evolutionary self. This is why the behaviours remain so ingrained notwithstanding the information that exists through the modern self.

          4. MB says:

            An article on the evolutionary vs the modern self as it pertains to the N vs E dynamic (or just ingrained behaviors in general) would be a great read, HG. A bit different from what you normally write, but might go a long way in explaining the instinctual behaviors of the N that seem difficult to grasp.

          5. HG Tudor says:

            I explain this as part of consultations MB as it is detailed and is applicable to lots of different scenarios that people find themselves in.

          6. MB says:

            Thank you for that HG. I have found this subject matter to be both fascinating and helpful. Preserve of the consult it is!

          7. HG Tudor says:

            It is very interesting MB and explains so much.

          8. Asp Emp says:

            Wow. Absolutely wow. Explained in a few words yet explains so much! Well known people in history can be “categorised” by the way they behaved, if, it is recorded. Awareness and understanding narcissism (and empaths) is the key to understanding humanity throughout the existence of such.

    3. Bubbles 🍾 says:

      Dear Pati,
      Soooooo childish …. you actually have 5 kids instead of 4
      Tell him you were looking at tampons n pantyliners n didn’t think he’d be interested
      I feel for you precious
      Stay strong
      Luv Bubbles xx 😘

      1. Sweetest Perfection says:

        True, Bubbles! I actually told my narc that there was a reason why I had decided not to have kids, and at this point I was not gonna start taking care of one.

        1. Bubbles 🍾 says:

          Dear Sweetest Perfection,
          Haha, I bet it went right over their head
          Compare the pair ….. so many behavioural similarities, “common sense” being a major factor
          I believe, deep down they just crave a “mum substitute” to luv them unconditionally and let them do whatever they want
          Luv Bubbles xx 😘

          1. Sweetest Perfection says:

            Bubbles, you’re right. But he already has his IPPS to cover that area.

      2. Pati says:

        Hahaha ,
        Exactly it wouldn’t interest him.
        I told him that I saw his riend from highschool and he looks Dam hot!!!!!!
        He got so jeaulous and starting saying bad things about him .

    4. cogra002 says:

      Pati , we never know what else is going on behind the scenes. Maybe he’s creating a problem so he can run and tell the new supply. Or maybe he had a fight w someone else and is putting some of it on you (XNarc had trouble keeping his lies and fights straight).
      U never know. All u can do is know u didn’t do anything and a lunatic is saying things that dont make sense.

      1. Pati says:

        Agreed, now I have to go to a baby shower today and he his telling me who to talk to.
        He is also telling me you know who’s team you need to be on. Cant stand this feeling.

        1. Sweetest Perfection says:

          Pati, whose baby shower is it? His own?

          1. Pati says:

            SP hahaha no my cousin from my side of the family .I am.so happy for her it took her 8 years to become pregnant.

          2. K says:

            Sweetest Perfection
            That was a riot! Ha ha ha….

        2. Bubbles 🍾 says:

          Dear Pati,
          Controlling much
          Has he always been like this ?
          Luv Bubbles xx 😘

          1. Pati says:

            Hi Bubbles ,
            He needs to be always in control at all times with everyone and everything. Its annoying.
            I let him have it today (probably gave him fuel)
            I dont care he needs to hear that he is not always right and people are entitled to their opinion and the world doesnt evolve only around him . I also told him that if he continues I am leaving .
            He cleaned up the whole house! Put up a closet,and did all the errands while I sat and did nothing. I enjoyed it
            Love Pati

          2. Bubbles 🍾 says:

            Dear Pati,
            Good for you lovely
            Sounds like temporary “panic mode” set in for him …. haha
            Now’s the time to give him a permanent “list of things to do” ….makes them feel important (plus it keeps him out of your hair) momentarily
            Make hay while the sun shines …. 🌝haha
            Luv Bubbles xx 😘

            Ps … in his head, the world DOES revolve around him, as do all narcs ….just don’t you forget it …..😂

          3. K says:

            Ha ha ha…I am glad that you enjoyed it. It was benign control; I see a Preventative Hoover.


          4. Pati says:

            He was texting my daughter the whole time can you believe it .
            There are numerous things this man always does e g. He turned my oldest daughter against my mother (her grandmother) and she didnt even talk to her can you believe it .my mom has babysat her since she was a baby .
            Then we got in a fight with my only brother and his wife. I saw my niece for the first time in six years at the baby shower and I burst our in tears .
            My husband wants nothing to do with them ( lo story ) it hurts me .

          5. K says:

            It is heartbreaking. Can you repair the relationship with your brother and SIL?

            Control by isolation often involves smearing/lies. This is done to keep the appliance close to the narcissist and to keep others, who are viewed as a threat to control, away. It’s also triangulation and generates both thought and proximate fuel.


          6. Pati says:

            K I am trying but they dont like my husband (I wonder why) my SIL sister kicks us out of her house during my nephews bday party 8 years ago My husband was being disrespectful with my youngest son at the time .it had nothing to do with me but I left . My brother didnt do anything about either as he took their side .
            I guess Narcs like causing trouble
            This is my family that’s why.
            I forgave my FIL for not coming to our wedding 23 years ago. But my nature is to forgive.
            Thanks K

          7. K says:

            Just keep reading and all the family drama will start to make sense. Narcsite is the ultimate denouement and then you can lay it all to rest and move forward.

          8. Pati says:

            Yes definitely K ,this website is the only thing keeping me sane at the moment lol,not I am not crazy just pissed off .I enjoy talking about here as well, thank you for all your advice .Hugs!

          9. K says:

            My pleasure Pati
            You are not insane! You are angry, which is completely understandable after all you have been through. This is the best place to talk about your experience and there are many enjoyable things about narcsite. You are not alone here and we understand what you’ve been through. Hell.

  3. Susanne Amor Propio says:


    And all of this instinctively.?

    The mids do this not being aware?

    They behave like this not “knowing” what they are doing… Not planned.

    That is so difficult to understand..

    1. HG Tudor says:


      It is difficult to understand, but not impossible, because of your worldview and the impact of your emotional thinking. If you organise an audio consultation I can explain it in detail to ensure you understand. It is a huge step forward one you grasp this understanding.

      1. Pati says:

        HG sometimes it does look like they plan it,but I listened to Can you control the Narcissist last night and you explained how they do things out of instinct and it makes sense.
        Thank you !

        1. HG Tudor says:

          You are welcome.

  4. cogra002 says:

    I have also experienced what I think is the Narc getting in a fight or some sort of disagreement with the new primary and picks a fight with me that seemingly makes no sense. This is all about what is going on with the others in the Fuel Matrix, as you point out.

  5. lisk says:

    HG, in Part 2, would you be willing to include a hot-cold example of the NISS in a work-related dynamic?

    It would be interesting (and possibly useful) to see.

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