Posted by ANA – After Narcissistic Abuse
As you’ll read below, every survivor describes narcissists in DANGEROUS terms. Each person that’s been victimized personally by a narcissist will warn you and serve as a cautionary tale that if you welcome a narcissist into your life, you’re dancing with the devil; welcoming them in to do one thing and one thing only to you: use, abuse and destroy you.
Many onlookers or those who haven’t experienced the narcissist in an unmasked state have a hard time believing that the people we describe and the horrendous acts of abuse committed on us were done by the very people they have a different opinion of. They don’t understand the disordered’s modus operandi. They don’t understand that their belief that the narcissist is a “likeable or admirable” character is evidence that the danger has already started, they’re manipulated by the narcissist’s “mask” and they’re in complete denial of reality.
There are two main traits of a narcissist that most all other symptomology stems from: Delusional reality and lack of empathy.
The first reason a narcissist is dangerous to others is because they are in complete denial of reality.
Here are a few of the delusions that are always present in a narcissist’s psyche:
Delusion of Grandeur – This denial of reality comes in the form of the narcissist having the belief about themselves that they just deserve more. They’re larger than life, a celebrity in their own minds, entitled to take from people without having to give anything back. Statements that reflect delusions of grandeur go something like this “Don’t you know who I am?” “I had to wait in line for an hour!” “I wont be spending MY money here again, if this is the service I get”.
According to the DSM-IV TR grandiose-type symptoms include grossly exaggerated beliefs of ones own:
exceptional relationship to a divinity or famous person.
Perfect Image – Anyone who thinks that perfection is obtainable and struggles to feel ‘worthy’ without achieving perfection is not in touch with reality. Reality dictates that we are fallable. We make mistakes, we fail, we fumble, we screw up; this is a fact of life, nature, the universe. For the narcissist, they possess the delusion that if they or the people around them achieve an image of being “perfect” that they will finally feel “ok”. They’re striving for something outside of themselves to feel good inside; this will NEVER happen.
Entitlement – Others exist to serve them – Narcissists hold the delusional thought that other human beings are objects that only exist to serve their needs. They view others in an inhumane way which allows them to act out on us with no empathy because they don’t believe we have rights of our own that the narcissist needs to pay any attention to. This complete and utter disregard for the rights of others, stems from their delusional thoughts that only ONE person benefits (wins) and that is the narcissist themselves. Narcissists view that everyone “owes” them is not in any way, shape, and/or form “realistic”.
Boundaries don’t exist – Not being aware of the boundaries that exist between two people is a denial of reality. The reality is that two people have separate identities, with separate thoughts, feelings, motivations, dreams, ideas, goals and rights. When a narcissist treats others as if they have the right to order, control, push and dictate another’s behavior (even if it’s manipulatively disguised as “helpful advice”), they are more driven by their desire for power than they are the right of the person they’re controlling to think, feel or act for themselves and are blinded from reality by that desire for power.
Non-Identity = Non-Accountability – Because a narcissist has a flexible, chameleon like identity, they have no solid foundation of self other than being that of a manipulative, changing being. They have no sense of self from which certain expectations and rules of conduct will flow. Their modus operandi is “whatever works”. Since they hold no code of ethics, their behaviors are categorized to them as either effective or non effective. Effective behaviors will be repeated regardless of the “consequences” to others. Since a narcissist has no boundaries, they don’t see the impact to others, because they don’t see them as “others”.
A narcissist’s construct literally goes like this:
Narcissist pounds your thumb with a hammer.
You scream in pain and yell, “what did you do that for!!??”
A narcissist will be able to say, “Do What??!!” Believing they did NOTHING, because they didn’t feel any pain whatsoever in their thumb.
If you insist on getting the narcissist to see the error of this whacky exchange, you will be told, “Well, you shouldn’t have had your hand on the table.”
The subject will be dropped and you will spend your time feeling bewildered and perplexed by the insanity of all, until it happens again, then you’ll focus on that atrocity and won’t be able to see that this has been the pattern all along.
Narcissists are in charge of reality – Power mongers. Control freaks who can’t recognize boundaries are the only people who can possibly believe that what they think is the reality for EVERYONE. It becomes very apparent that a narcissist believes themselves to be all knowing when they’re insistent that they know what you think, what you are really saying, who you really are or what your motivation really is. Their entitlement and lack of boundaries allows them to play God; they’re the writers of the script, the great puppeteers, the all knowing Wizard of Oz.
Worn down targets find it easier to just roll over and fold. We realize the narcissist’s ability to argue and fight surpasses our own, we aren’t interested in winning just being heard, but there comes a point where it’s just too exhausting to take the narcissist to task on these frequent power plays.
Most realistic people have an awareness of when they’re acting in a manipulative or coercive manner and feel a sense of responsibility to back off, not cross that line or not offer unsolicited advice or opinions. We respect the boundaries of others, because we are aware they exist. Narcissists have NO CONCEPT of these lines and what constitutes obtrusive behavior.
Rapists, child molesters, robbers and murderers have the same inhumane view of people, viewing them as objects to exploit at will and have no concept that it is wrong to violate or cross the demarcation lines of another’s property, being or identity.
We as an enlightened society, KNOW that these types of people are dangerous and frankly would be quite relieved committing these people to institutions so that they can’t harm society in these atrocious ways again. If you can understand this danger, then you can understand why former victims of narcissists view them with the same passionate concern for safety of themselves and others.