The Narcissist and Marriage



Marriage. Widely-regarded as one of the central events in a person’s life. Whether it is a traditional church affair with white wedding dress, a civil ceremony inside a football stadium, something unusual such as at the bottom of a swimming pool, a same sex union, a week long Indian wedding or getting spliced in front of Elvis in Las Vegas, marriage remains a celebration.

It is the idea that two people want to spend the rest of their days together. The concept that this other person is so important to you that you wish to pledge your fidelity, allegiance and your entire self to your significant other before whichever personal god you worship. Notwithstanding the differing ways weddings occur, it remains a joyous occasion and one which many people aspire to, with differing ideas of how the day will look and feel. People seek a happy, long and fulfilling marriage. Sometimes that does not work out, sometimes it does. Our kind are no strangers to marriage, indeed, of those people who marry more than once, our kind are probably well-represented. One might be forgiven for thinking that our kind are particular devotees of the concept of marriage and in some respects, that is correct, but not for reasons people would expect. How do we regard marriage?

  1. It is a brilliant device for future faking. Those who are love devotees, which includes empathic people, want to marry. They consider the act of union with the person that they love to be hugely significant and a true marker of intent and desire. Our kind utilise the significance that is attributed to marriage as the means by which we can continue to draw people to us and also keep them bound to us, even if we have not married them. The promise of marriage at some future point is a definite ace to play to prevent an appliance from drifting away. Whether this is an IPPS who we live with or a Candidate IPSS we have high hopes for or even a Shelf IPSS who has not (unsurprisingly) worked out what they are, the potential to become married is tempting indeed. The promise of marriage becomes a large comfort crumb to feed to the appliance and involves sentences such as:

“I think we should get married at some point.”

“When I get the next promotion, I think we should consider getting married.”

“We ought to get married next year.”

“When someone is as happy as you and I, we really ought to  be married.”

“I often think about what it would be like to be married.” (Not necessarily to you though)

“Can you imagine how great it would be if we got married?”

There is no proposal of marriage, no definite confirmation that this should take place but rather a vague and amorphous intention which can easily be put back when we choose so we can keep using this as a tempting morsel to keep you interested. It does not just have to be about stating an intention to get married but will include:-

a. Looking at engagement rings but never buying one;

b. Considering suitable wedding venues but never booking anything;

c. Discussing honeymoons but not booking anything;

d. Mentioning it to family and friends;

e. Drawing up potential guests lists but never doing anything with them;

f. Considering where to have the wedding list;

g. Considering what items to have on the wedding list;

h. Discussing colours for outfits, flowers, a theme and so forth but making no concrete decisions.

Such is the allure of the idea of getting married that it is probably the largest comfort crumb that can be fed to an appliance and the largest piece of future faking.

2. Marriage is extremely effective at binding an IPPS to us. We want to ensure that person is ours, owned by us and therefore by becoming engaged and getting married within a short time of meeting the IPPS we secure this individual and bind them to us through the institution of marriage. The appliance is made to feel ultra-special by us proposing to them and then marrying them.

3. It reinforces the concept of love which appeals to the empathic love devotee. As the song goes, ‘love and marriage, go together like a horse and carriage’. Love and all of its binding abilities, supportive elements and fuelling connotations goes hand in hand with marriage and therefore getting married is seen as a supreme act of love. Accordingly, marriage is always going to prove an excellent move with regards to ensnaring a choice empathic victim.

4. The façade. Being married tells the world that we can attract somebody, that somebody loves us, that we are desirable. It suggests stability and reliability and as such is a useful device for bolstering the façade so we are regarded as respectable and honourable. As Alec Baldwin stated in the film, The Departed

“Marriage is an important part of getting ahead. It lets people know you’re not a homo. A married guy seems more stable. People see the ring, they think “at least somebody can stand the son of a bitch.” Ladies see the ring, they know immediately that you must have some cash, and your cock must work.”

Several elements there which would support the façade and also appeal to our notion of getting ahead, and being seen as desirable.

5. Stability. This is a two pronged matter. The outside world, as mentioned above in the quote, regards a married person as more stable which helps with the façade. It also however helps our kind maintain stability with regards to the provision of fuel. This is especially important for the Lesser and Mid-Range Narcissists who may not have the sophisticated fuel matrices of the Greater. By securing the IPPS in this manner through marriage, the narcissist is gaining the advantage of knowing that there is going to be a reliable source of fuel for some time (both positive and then negative).

6. Religion. Whilst not as important as it once was (witness the rise of civil ceremonies) religion still plays an important part for many people with regard to the concept of marriage and where religion is a fundamental part of the life of the targeted victim, then this is something that we will exploit. Adhering to the religious significance of marriage enables us to use to not only draw a victim to us but also to bind them to us too.

7. The Preparation. Most weddings require considerable preparation. The wedding venue, a reception venue, what food will be served, whether there is a theme, stag and hen parties, guest lists, what will be worn, where people will sit, the wedding list, the wedding vehicles, the entertainment and so on and so forth. This provides us with numerous opportunities for the provision of fuel by repeatedly talking about our forthcoming nuptials, being able to show off in terms of extravagance, settling old scores and creating new ones through those who are invited and those who are not. There is a myriad of possibilities to use this occasion to our advantage when engaging in the preparation. Indeed, the different opportunities for gaining fuel merit an article in itself with regard to the run-up to and the preparation for a wedding.

8. The wedding day. This is one huge fuel fest. So many adoring appliances, jealous appliances, love-lorn and emotional. Everywhere we go, all eyes are on us. Scores of fuel lines running from us to all of these appliances, from the staff waiting on us, the vicar, the bridesmaids, the bride/groom, the guests. The power surge from all of the positive fuel (and there will be some negative fuel in there too – always pays to invite an ex appliance along just to keep things spiced up. My ex-wife repeatedly reminded me how she was surprised to find one of my exes at our wedding. I wasn’t surprised by how much fuel it kept providing me with thereafter). The day is one of fuel from start to finish and whilst everyone else is enjoying themselves through seeing love requited, the flowing alcohol and interesting dancing, we are gorging on the fuel that is flowing.

It is also worth making mention of The Pinnacle Effect. This is one of the interesting consequences of a wedding. Once the marriage has been secured there are those of our kind who find the explosion of fuel to be the best it can be in terms of positive fuel. This is also allied with the fact that the marriage also means that our kind see that the IPPS is totally embedded and ensnared. This results in the Pinnacle Effect. It is not evident with every wedding that occurs between narcissist and victim, indeed it less likely than more likely, but it is still worth mentioning. Once the ceremony has been completed, the reception attended and either the happy couple head off on their honeymoon or retire to their suite that night, The Pinnacle Effect occurs. The positive fuel is as good as it gets, the IPPS is ensnared and thus the devaluation begins. I have heard of numerous occasions where the blushing bride has become the bludgeoned bride or the amorous groom finds himself the alienated groom instead. The devaluation commences through being frozen out, verbally attacked or even physically assaulted.

9. Marriage applies to you and not to us. You have said the vows and we expect and demand you to comply with them. You will be faithful to us, you will look after us in sickness and in health, you will remain with us for better or for worse, for richer or poorer and so forth. You belong to us. That is the central tenet of the Narcissistic Relationship and the sealed nuptials confirms this to be the case. You will abide by these vows and be a reliable, faithful and compliant spouse. Of course with our sense of entitlement, lack of boundary recognition and failure to account, those vows do not apply to us. We will say them but we will not abide by them.

10. Marriage is a useful device. If you transgress in some way, we will hurl your vows at you (regardless of what we have done to offend them) and we will tell all and sundry that you have sullied the sacred name of marriage. We will wail about ‘wanting to make the marriage work’ when we perceive that you may be trying to escape us. We use the concept of marriage as a manipulative device to further our aims. You must be tied to us, you must save the marriage and not walk away from it, it is a yoke about your neck and a means to an end for us.

11. Stickability. The fact that you are married to us and you believe in the concept of marriage means that you are less likely to give up on it. You do not like to fail and you do not want to walk away without having tried to make it work. Binding you to us in this fashion means that we force you to keep trying and to cling on to us, with all the attendant benefits which subscribe to the Prime Aims also.

12. Divorce. If we marry you and we decide or you have the audacity to try to escape then it follows that divorce must take place. It is not a straight forward case of packing a bag and walking away. The fact that marriage requires a divorce if you seek to escape it provides us with further opportunities to draw fuel, bolster the façade and either hoover you back in or make your life a misery by pillorying you through the divorce proceedings.

It is rare to find a narcissist who has not been married and with some of our kind the marriages will number two or more. And why not? The institution of marriage is ripe for exploitation to further our narcissistic agenda.

Little wonder we are so ready to say ‘I do’.

If only you knew this beforehand so you could have said, ‘I do not’.

22 thoughts on “The Narcissist and Marriage

  1. ava101 says:

    Well, if I didn’t know your blog I’d probably go crazy about the exnarc. I have had a number of abusive exs who got married more or less right after our relationship ended, it had always perplexed. me, but with analysis feom your point of view, it is quite different.

    Exnarc said it was ‘high energy’ to have had fights with his wife during lockdowns…. they bought a house months after having been to marriage counselling, and now he got her parents to help with building him a ‘studio’ on the grounds…
    I don’t care, truly, I keep watching him out of interest, and to never fall for a person like him. His wife though must be of boundless energy and completely blinded by the family concept…
    I am so so glad not be married to him and it was a big consolation to me during lockdowns in isolation, that it could’ve been much worse – in lockdown with him.

  2. alexissmith2016 says:

    HG why would Tony Blair marry someone like Cherie? I don’t really understand? Surely he could have found someone who suited the prime aims better?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      She provides fuel.
      He has been able to control her.
      She provides character traits and residual benefits.
      She caters to what he needs as the IPPS.

      1. Alexissmith2016 says:

        Wow okay, it takes all sorts I guess. Thanks very much HG. She must provide some amazing fuel!

        1. HG Tudor says:

          More to do with her residual benefits at the beginning.

          1. Alexissmith2016 says:

            Ah lovely. Makes a lot of sense. Thank you very much HG.

  3. A Victor says:

    None of these are the right reasons for getting married. Would a narcissist ever get married believing it will be for life and expecting it to last that long?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Most narcissists marry believing it will last for life, otherwise why do it?

      1. A Victor says:

        Oh, I didn’t realize that. I thought they got married for the prime aims at that moment without thinking of the future. Thanks.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          You misunderstand.

          For the unaware narcissist, the narcissism is focused on the now – the Prime aims in the now.
          To make the narcissist achieve those Prime Aims in the now, the narcissism causes the narcissist to feel and think in a particular way so the achievement of the Prime Aims is maximised. Thus the narcissism causes the narcissist to think he wishes to marry that person and that it will last forever. Whether it does or not is irrelevant at that point because it is the NOW which is matters.

          1. A Victor says:

            Oh okay, basically they are deluded by their own narcissism then. And it happens with all sorts of things besides marriage also, which is what makes them effective at doing what they do, including something as big as marriage (which is unbelievable to me). I did misunderstand, hopefully I have it right now. Thank you.

          2. Truthseeker6157 says:


            1. If the narcissism convinces the unaware narcissist that he wants to marry the IPPS and that it will last forever, presumably then the unaware narcissist will only go through with the marriage during the Golden Period, never during devaluation?

            2. The Greater Narcissist could conceivably decide to marry during devaluation as a means to an end, achieving required residual benefits for example, knowing that divorce is likely on the cards further down the line?

            3. Is this why wealthy celebs and industry leaders etc use prenups? They know it will end due to their self awareness. Is a prenup an indicator for narcissism?

          3. HG Tudor says:

            1. An unaware narcissist would not marry in devaluation.

            2. Yes.

            3. No, it is not always linked to self awareness but rather preservation of control in the now (I know I have a prenup so I know NOW that the future is covered). It is not an indicator for narcissism, a non-narcissist may well have them and be well advised to do so.

          4. lickemtomorrow says:

            In reference to No.1., my experience is that a narcissist can very quickly put you into devaluation post-nuptials. In fact, I believe the last narc put his ex-wife into devaluation within 24-48hrs after they were married, since apparently that was how long it took *her* to change! Why didn’t I see a red flag there … why, why, why???

            I was on the scrapheap within the month with my ex-husband. That whole relationship was just one big red flag 😛

            Ultimately, I guess the prize has been captured, let the devaluation begin …

          5. JB says:

            Guess that explains how you can go from being top dog to bottom of the heap in the blink of an eye, because at that specific ‘now’ moment you are no longer deemed fit for requirements!

          6. Asp Emp says:

            JB, the ‘order’ of a narcissist’s ‘Fuel Matrix’ can change at any moment. A friend of mine married 3 times and has said never again (to getting married) – the last one probably ‘did the job’ – he did so much but she is also head-strong. The same friend has also been ‘there’ for me since she and I talked (via messaging) about narcissism around 18 months ago. That guy was crossing the lines RE: when her kids were teenagers and what is more, he is ex-law person (knows the law but in his “own” way) which makes it all the worse for my friend. At the time of her telling me, I was ‘uneducated’ on narcissism and also during my ‘dangerous’ period.

          7. Truthseeker6157 says:

            Thank you for your response HG.

            I’ve been researching psychopathy of late. I’m interested in how it sits with narcissism. In many ways it seems to me that the two psychological states are actually conflicting in terms of motivation and the way the two perceive the world around them.

            If the Greater Narcissist would marry during devaluation, then this suggests the primary motivator is more goal than fuel driven. Money, status, social standing etc. More psychopath than narcissist. It’s more ‘I want’ less ‘I need’.

            The unaware narcissist believes the marriage will last, he believes his needs will be met. He believes that this person makes him feel good and he wants to continue feeling good (well fuelled). This seems less goal oriented, more fuel oriented.

            This considered then, it points to the Greater Narcissists as being narcissistic psychopaths / sociopaths and not pure narcissists. Hence why you describe them as being Machiavellian in nature, more sadistic, these are traits of a psychopath.

            Technically, are all Greater Narcissists, narcissistic psychopaths? If so, is it the psychopathy that leads to them becoming self aware?

        2. Eternity says:

          Same here, but HG is right they all live on the now.. I had a hard time understanding it.

          1. A Victor says:

            I re-listened to Is It Planning. That helped me make more sense of it. It was also interesting to learn that they won’t marry during devaluation, this explains why when my ex and I married, we had a good couple of years after the wedding. If he devalued me during that time I was unaware. It was the best time in the whole 23 years I spent with him. Made the devaluation that came after horrendous, so not worth it.

          2. Eternity says:

            A Victor, yup not worth it. I agree it is horrendous. Of course we were unaware how the hell would we know what is going on? I knew something wasn’t right,but couldn’t put my finger on it ! I mean I gave him the finger very often. I got pissed off. I then would say stop sulking like a child. He would walk out . I am do glad I don’t have to deal with it or I would have to give him a time out ha ha ha ha .

          3. A Victor says:

            A time out? Hahahaha!! Very good Eternity!

          4. Eternity says:

            A Victor , yes a time out, isn’t that what we did to out children when they were young. Ha ha. MMR type B boo hoo !!!!!

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