The Narcissist and Gifts
What do narcissists think about giving? Well, the starting point is that we are a gift to the world and really, should there be any need for us to give anything more? Of course there is; the giving of gifts provides us with yet another opportunity to manipulate people, exert control and ultimately draw fuel. Some people think that narcissists may not want to give gifts because we hate to do things for other people. The latter part of that point is correct, but the simple fact as ever is that the end justifies the means then we will do that and if that means parting with some of our money to purchase a gift and spending some time selecting it, then so be it. You probably will understand however that when it comes to the giving of gifts, it is nothing at all to do with you. As usual, it is all about us.
- Gifts of Seduction. During the seduction of a victim, some of our kind revel in the grand gestures of expensive and wonderful gifts. There may be repeated gifts every few days or some large grandiose gift. Occasionally, we may give careful consideration to what will impress you most but it is always linked into how it will benefit us. The purpose of such gifts is to cause you to admire us, thank us and draw closer to us as a consequence of our generosity and our thoughtfulness. Don’t think that we have been that considerate. You will probably receive a similar gift to the last primary source. If worked last time, so we will do it again. Thus the Somatic Narcissist who selects victims who are into material items may well always purchase some Louboutin shoes for each victim. The Cerebral Narcissist will provide a weighty tome for you to read. Not only is this exclusive hardback expensive but he can tell you all about how much he knows about the subject later. We also rely on the fact that even if the gift is not precisely what you wanted, most people are delighted to receive gifts and during the wonderful, elating and mesmerising seduction, the whole of the effects of our seduction make the receipt of the gift all the more gratifying. It gains kudos from being given against a backdrop of compliments, love, amazing sex, days and nights out and so forth. By appearing thoughtful and generous we draw you closer to us.
- Creation of debt. We only give you a gift in order to get something we want and the provision of a gift automatically creates a debt in our mind. It might be that we will control you through this gift, it might be that we use it to gain fuel or to mollify you if we think you are on the brink of leaving us and denying us our fuel. No matter how lavish or expensive the gift, there will be a price to pay for it, either now or later.
- Creating the favourite. We often use gifts to create a favourite and generate division. For instance, if we have three nephews, who are still young children, we may give one a larger and more expensive gift to one and smaller and less expensive gifts to the other two and it is obvious. Children will react to this with jealousy, petulance and upset which will generate fuel. It does not stop there. The parents of the nephews may well react to this unequal treatment so there is more fuel forthcoming. If we are challenged as to why we have done this you can expect to be told,
“It is my money and I decide how I spend it.”
We are entitled to do as we want and when it comes to giving gifts there is no exception.
This favouritism will continue all the way through so that a golden child will always fare better at Christmas and birthdays than his or her siblings with the attendant problems that arise. We will even do this when we have gone with an unequal division of assets. The Thought Fuel that arises as we sign the will knowing of the in-fighting that will come about in due course is satisfying indeed.
- The Rubbish Gift. This is done by design and often unintentionally. Since we lack empathy, we see no need to consider what somebody else what might really want for their birthday. Thus, we provide them with a hideous jumper that is too big or a garish ornament. The look of dejection and disappointment on that person’s face when they receive a book about butterflies produces a good dose of fuel for us. Of course if they do not seem appropriately happy, this allows us to roll out comments such as: –
“But I thought you loved butterflies.”
“I looked everywhere for that gift.”
“You should be grateful you got anything at all.”
We know you don’t like butterflies. We found the gift in the bargain bin at the supermarket and we know you won’t be grateful, we don’t want you to be, so we can provoke you for some more fuel.
- The Residual Fuel. Flowing from the rubbish gift is the expectation that when we next call around the hideous statue of what is meant to be two dolphins in the foam but looks more like a frothing Quasimodo, should be pride of place on your mantelpiece. Alternatively, you should be wearing that migraine inducing jumper. If you are not, you can expect us to play the victim and make you feel guilty for not showcasing our generous gift.
- The Wrong Gift. The cousin of the rubbish gift. This gift may be a good gift but it is the wrong one. You may already have one of these items already and a second is of no use. It might be that you asked for a handbag in black and we have bought you one in brown, even though it is the same make. The shoe size might be two sizes out either way, the ring too small, the lingerie too small. We do this because you see the wrapped item and recognise it to be the item you have asked for and your excitement mounts, only then to be dashed by this narrow miss. Yes, you may be able to exchange it, but we will have lost the receipt and such like and we will still make a song and dance if you point out that it is the wrong gift or if you fail to look suitably happy. You can expect comments such as: –
“You have one already. Well, a spare shoe horn is always handy.”
“It is too tight? Not my fault you have put weight on is it?”
“You told me size 7, yes you did. Stop trying to blame me for your mistake.”
“So what if it I a different colour, you should appreciate I bought you something.”
- Forgetting a gift. It always provides us with fuel when you expect a gift and none is forthcoming. We derive amusement from seeing you waiting all day, expecting a delivery to the door, or hunting around the house thinking that we have hidden your gift. When evening comes and no gift has been forthcoming your annoyance, upset or dismay provides us with further fuel. We will of course apply selective amnesia or deflection to the situation.
“I thought the anniversary was next week?”
“It’s only Valentine’s day, you shouldn’t expect a gift.”
“You are too old to receive birthday presents now.”
“Is it your birthday? I thought it was on the 21st?”
- My gift. You are expecting a gift and there is something expensive sat on the dining table. It is not given to you but sits there all day until you eventually ask if it is for you only to be told it is not and it is for me. Cue crestfallen look and more fuel.
- The Respite and Hoover Gift. Part of the seduction family. If we want to bring you back into the Formal Relationship following discard or escape, or if we want to reinstate the golden period, we will supply you with gifts again and endeavour to make them thoughtful so that you provide us with positive fuel and we draw you back to us.
- Future Faking. Gifts are not immune from us always promising to buy you something amazing for that forthcoming birthday. This keeps you bound to us, you keep giving us positive fuel from your enthusiastic responses to our promises, but we fail to deliver. We draw fuel and then promise to get it for you for Christmas instead. You know what is going to happen don’t you?
- Charity Gifts. If we make some donation to charity whether it cash or equipment, or even items we no longer need for them to sell at a charity store, you can be sure we will let as many people know as possible of our generosity. This gains fuel and maintains our façade.
- Outdoing Others. If there is a christening, a baby shower or a wedding we will often go big with our gift giving. If you have a wedding list, we will go off list in order to be different even though that crystal orange juice squeezer is not exactly needed. This form of gift giving is nothing to do with you. The gifts are likely to be lavish and expensive but it is all about showing off and gaining fuel and admiration as opposed to buying someone what they actually want. Of course, any complaint or lack of appreciation will be met with us playing the victim.
- Recycling. You end up being given a gift which clearly was a gift to us which we did not want. In some examples we may have even left the gift tag on showing that it was for added reaction. We considered those lavender bath bombs we received to be a total insult so next door can now have them as a house warming gift. Even beyond this, we may even give you as a gift something you gave to us. Not only does this show us to cheapskates it also shows we do not think much of your gift. Fuel abounds.
- Proximate Fuel. We gain proximate fuel from witnessing the reaction of our victims to our manipulative gift giving. As you know, we like to cause a scene and what better way that doing so in person, at a party or an event.
- Thought Fuel. Gift giving allows a double whammy. We have the chance to gain proximate fuel when we hand the gift over and you unwrap it and we also contemplate your reaction when we are not there. Either siblings fighting over the gift, people expressing their hurt at a tasteless gift, a rubbish one or the wrong one, so we even gain fuel after the event.
- The Early Declaration. If we are being grandiose in our gift-giving you can expect to know about your gift on Facebook or similar platforms when we post pictures of it and tell the world what we have got you for your birthday. No surprises for you, but plenty of admiring fuel for us.
- What the Last One Got. We buy you a gift and we can see you are not happy with it, underwhelmed or even upset. Of course there will be no sympathy or consideration shown by us. All we will do is remark about what we have got you is bigger, better and more expensive than what the last primary source got and you ought to be grateful. This also works in reverse when we let slip that we did not get you something as good as what the last primary source received because you didn’t get a good birthday present for us (even though you will have done – the reality is no bar to our manipulations).
- The Last One Didn’t Appreciate My Gifts. If we sense that you are unhappy with our gift, we gain fuel, but we will also emotionally blackmail you into being pleased with it by telling you how mean the previous primary source was in that no matter what we bought him he never appreciated the gifts. Suddenly, you are gushing over the tickets to a local amateur dramatic performance of Macbeth, even though you hate plays.
- But Look What I Gave You! This is done for future manipulation. If you fail to do something in the future, fail to submit and do what we want, we will hark back (and do so repeatedly) to that marvellous, rare and expensive gift we once got you. As I mentioned above, you always end up paying for the gift in some way.
- The Target. The gift we have given you and one which you like and cherish is used in the future as a device to manipulate you and draw fuel form you. We threaten to break the gift or we do break it. We hide it or take it from you. After all, what is ours remains ours and what is yours is still ours anyway since we are entitled and do not recognize boundaries.
Gifts and the act of giving provide us with so many opportunities to draw fuel both positive and negative from people, bind people to us, control them and manipulate them.
What is your experience of the narcissist and gifts?
7 thoughts on “The Narcissist and Gifts”
Interestingly, no gift given in a two years period, except for a bottle of perfume (no special occasion and not asked for – I already had a perfume that I liked). Before I realised he was a narcissist, I thought the perfume was to smell more like his wife (so she would not be able to smell me on him). Now I have realised what he is, I have to admit that is actually a very clever manipulating tool as every time I would get a whiff of the perfume on me, I would naturally think of him. Therefore I would think of him all day long without him having to expand any energy! Funnily enough, after about two weeks I developed a serious allergy (big red rash) to the perfume and had to stop wearing it. Clearly my body had recognised what I was dealing with and was trying to send me a message (not the first narc to come in my life).
My ex would stick there nose in everybody’s business and then backstab everybody.
Im suprised how they dont see there character and behaviour.
He bought me gold colored jewelry knowing I only like silver. He bought me Chucks, and demanded me frequently afterwards to wear them all day with no socks before meeting him.. ( he has a foot fetish) whenever we had an arguments he would always mention all the gifts he had bought me, forgetting I did so equally for him, and more…
My ex narc bought me a beautiful bracelet and a suite at the best hotel in town to attend a charity event with him quite early in the relationship. I live 1.5 hrs from him. It was clear his intent was to seduce me. I did feel manipulated but also flattered. He didn’t get sex that night, but he did invite himself to stay with me that evening and I allowed it. I honestly didn’t want him to, but I can see how my codependence played into his hands quite cunningly. He didn’t get his way that night, but I didn’t get mine either.
Months later, I saw a picture of him and his ex wife. She had on a bracelet by the same designer.
OMG!!! Lisa, this sounds like a mystery novel!
Is the brush for sweeping the ice cream off the floor?
First Christmas I got nothing, then was made to feel guilty for being disappointed over it. Of course a silent treatment resulted. He knew I had purchased him a gift so it was quite hurtful.
When I gave him his gift (which I had spent a lot of time picking out), he just took the gift bag, put it down on the floor next to his chair and didn’t open it or say thank you. He said he would open it on Christmas Day (this was a couple days before.)