The Narcissist and the Power of Pain



My mind has always applied itself to how I can exert control over other people. I understand now that it commenced doing this unconsciously, that is the very nature of narcissism. However, I also gained an awareness of how fundamental power is to me, how I need it, how I want it and how I can use it. I recognised that having power made me feel powerful, immense, gargantuan in presence and application and that I could not stand to be without it. Of course this all stemmed from my utter need (like all of my kind) for control at all times. I did not know of this particular need initially.

It is clear I developed an unconscious need for control and power. Unlike most of my kind, this then evolved into a conscious need for control and power and thus allied with a natural lack of empathy, immense intelligence and sadistic streak I took notice of the ways in which I could actively and purposefully achieve control and power.

This control had to be over everything – the environment around me and of course that meant the people within that environment.

I had to control people. I absolutely had to.

By applying control I get them to do what I want and this will enable me to obtain fuel from them. I witnessed at an early stage the power of pain and this formed in my mind an indelible reason to utilise it in order to gain and maintain control.

I do not recall precisely how old I was but I do recall that I had not yet started secondary school so I must have been under the age of twelve. There was a group of us children that played together and it was during a particular summer that we had been engaged in some kind of game in the fields near to where we all lived. The fields and the small river which ran through them with the occasional copse made for an exciting environment in which we could play out invented games. From battles between armies, to tales of fantasy involving orcs and elves through to pretending to be astronauts on an undiscovered planet, we made full use of the space that we were afforded.

I recall that one hot afternoon we had been engaged in a game which involved a battle and one of our group, a boy called Jonathan had been the general. He was not very good and he had made a series of stupid decisions that meant our side lost the battle. I was determined not to lose the war and I proposed that I should now be the general and it should be me who organised our troops. He was a whiny child who began to bleat about how I was often the general and it was his turn today. He explained his turn was to last all day. I grew irritated by his desire to remain in place as the general and a calamitous one at that. How dare he assume the mantle of greatness when it was patently clear that he was not up to the task? How dare he lead us to slaughter and defeat? I was not happy but despite my protests he would not stand down. The other side had long since departed across the other side of the fields and were awaiting the shot for battle to be joined. Our troops had been dispatched to various locations leaving just Jonathan and I at the rear. I was furious with him. My rage at his idiocy was burning inside of me and as he stood on the rock from which the general always directed our troops, since it afforded a good view across the meadow I moved besides him. With a violent shove I pushed him from the rock and he fell into a clump of stinging nettles that had grown next to the rock. He howled in pain as the first stings took effect and wearing a t-shirt and shorts, his exposed limbs and face fell prey to the vicious stings of the nettles. He cried out and jumped up trying to move free of the nettles but as he neared the edge I gave him another shove and sent him tumbling back into the midst of them causing him to cry out again. With tears streaming down his face and arms showing the welts from the repeated stings he tried to emerge again and once more I pushed him back into the stinging nettles. I did this again and then once again until with face red and swollen he decided against trying to get past me and stumbled through the nettles, wincing and whimpering as he took another route. I watched him leave until all that could be heard was his juddering sobbing. I climbed onto the rock and from there took control of our troops and directed them to a stunning victory.

Jonathan’s father later attended at our house. I saw him striding up the path with Jonathan in tow, his father incandescent with anger. I stood at the top of the stairs and listened as he thundered and shouted but he did not breach our porch. My mother barred his way and I could not hear her voice but I knew that she would be keeping him in his place with her steely tones and flinty looks. Eventually Jonathan and his father walked away back down the path and I watched their family retreat for the second time that day.

There was no punishment from my mother. Nothing was said to me at all. In her usual fashion she had dealt with the matter. I know not what she said but she made no mention of it to me. This was her way of dealing with such matters.

I continued to play with the group and with Jonathan. Every time he looked at me I could see the pain in his eyes just as I had that day when I had pushed him repeatedly into the stinging nettles. He never asked to be general again and was always the first to suggest that I be appointed as leader of our troops. He had experienced pain doled out by me and he knew what to do thereafter. I also knew what power could be derived from such pain. It was a lesson in learning an instrument of manipulation.

I was learning. Pain equalled power.

I was finally righting the wrongs and power was THE instrument by which this would be achieved.

7 thoughts on “The Narcissist and the Power of Pain

  1. Esther says:

    Inflicting pain to achieve one’s goal is pretty sad/ dishonest way of existence .. makes me think of the dark ages and interrogating techniques lol 🤦‍♀️

  2. WiserNow says:

    I have read this article several times now, and initially, my focus was on the children’s behaviour and interactions. This time, I focused on the parents instead.

    Firstly, Jonathan’s father strode up the path to HG’s house, “incandescent with anger”. This reaction from Jonathan’s father was understandable, however, it did little to rectify the situation or give some lasting solace to Jonathan. The angry and insistent attitude only served to give HG’s mother a good quantity of fuel and guaranteed a stand-off between them.

    Secondly, HG’s mother gave HG no punishment and made no mention of the incident to him. He already displayed a lack of empathy, however, his mother’s reaction to the whole situation had not even a little tiny bit of a reprimand. As far as HG was concerned, his mother’s reaction may as well have been a pat on the back for a doing a good deed.

    Both parents were at fault and each one provided a poor lesson to their child. The children were still at the age when they could have been influenced by the way their parents handled the situation.

    Jonathan’s father could have approached HG’s house calmly with Jonathan’s mother or another adult. This would have given him a witness to the meeting and a third person to provide a more level-headed interaction. He could have also involved the children’s school at a later date after some kind of incident report was prepared in relation to bullying behaviour etc.

    HG’s mother could have called HG to the porch and had a discussion with both boys and Jonathan’s father to point out to HG that his actions were wrong and he was required to apologise to Jonathan. She could have at least shown concern for Jonathan’s injuries and been civil to Jonathan’s father. She could also have punished HG afterwards or discussed why he was wrong to hurt Jonathan.

    Children learn from their parents. Their parents set the standards of behaviour and also provide children with the opportunity to learn how to behave and why. Authoritative parenting is shown to be the most beneficial when it comes to socially well-adjusted adults.

    If HG was constantly shown this kind of reaction by his mother, he never learned how or why to show restraint with other people. His entitled behaviour had no limit. Similarly, if Jonathan constantly witnessed his father losing his temper and not being able to think of a plan of action to protect him in cases like this, Jonathan learned that backing down and being angry about it was the way to respond.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Good observations WN.

      1. WiserNow says:

        Thanks HG.

  3. USA says:


    My Greater Narcissist ex (with whom I’m forced by the court to have contact with as we share 50/50 custody) has a genius level IQ.

    However, he would never be as overt in his method as your story suggests. He maintains his power and control through gaslighting, stonewalling, and indifference. Since he is legally responsible for all the kids expenses, he uses money and withholding to exert control. He will send the kids to my house on my timeshare week without winter coats. The kids think I am “overreacting“ when I complain about buying new ones or ask them to go back and get their coats from his house. He has stonewalled and legally outmaneuvered every attempt at contempt of court.

    If my ex would exert more overt means of control, as in your story, I could petition the Court for less contact and/or less parenting time for him. The covert tactics are incredibly hard for the court to see.

    I have already read your book, revenge. What are the means by which I can provoke him to change from covert tactics to more visible ones? His weak spots are his reputation and money. He has already successfully completed a smear campaign. I represent myself and so I do burn up his attorney’s time with my constant questions and back-and-forth. I need some thing, however, to push him over the edge so I have overt proof.

    I feel a public response would help those of us who are dealing with narcissists who have an incredible amount of self-control and covert methods. In my two decades of knowing him, I don’t believe I’ve ever seen him lose his temper or be provoked to react aggressively. He is too methodical.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Hello USA and thank you for your comment, for reasons explained in Rule 14 (see in the Menu Under Formal Information – Rules) the appropriate method of dealing with your query is through consultation. I recommend you utilise the following

  4. Hope says:

    So sad. My brother is like this. He controlled with his fists, fear, intimidation, threats, manipulation. To all his siblings. And he bullied the neighbor kids, as well, who followed him about and who he graced with his presence, when he felt like it. He called them names and criticized them to their faces and they still adored him. He once locked me in a tree to impress his friends by his ability to make me cry after removing the ladder and the zip line after I climbed 50’ onto a tiny platform. It was hours before my sister discovered me and brought me the ladder. He also offered to play a game with me and instead handcuffed me to filing cabinet in the basement next to the toilet for three hours and left me there before my sister discovered me. I was like 3. My mom denies it or minimizes it (He always charmed his way out of any accountability) and when confronted says. “People can change. He’s not like that anymore. You don’t know him anymore.” She asks if I think he’ll get married to his gf soon. I say “I hope not! Poor girl.”

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