Posts tagged ‘narcissus’

August 17th, 2013

pussy-strut: whats that thing where somebody hurts you and then wants you to make them feel better…


whats that thing where somebody hurts you and then wants you to make them feel better about having hurt you

January 14th, 2013

"Leaving is not enough. You must stay gone. Train your heart like a dog. Change the locks even on the…"

“Leaving is not enough. You must stay gone. Train your heart like a dog. Change the locks even on the house he’s never visited. You lucky, lucky girl. You have an apartment just your size. A bathtub full of tea. A heart the size of Arizona, but not nearly so arid. Don’t wish away your cracked past, your crooked toes, your problems are papier mache puppets you made or bought because the vendor at the market was so compelling you just had to have them. You had to have him. And you did. And now you pull down the bridge between your houses, you make him call before he visits, you take a lover for granted, you take a lover who looks at you like maybe you are magic. Make the first bottle you consume in this place a relic. Place it on whatever altar you fashion with a knife and five cranberries. Don’t lose too much weight. Stupid girls are always trying to disappear as revenge. And you are not stupid. You loved a man with more hands than a parade of beggars, and here you stand. Heart like a four-poster bed. Heart like a canvas. Heart leaking something so strong they can smell it in the street.”


Frida Kahlo to Marty McConnell (via thenocturnals)


January 1st, 2013

catfoxwolf: Let’s address the fallacy that a capacity for…


Let’s address the fallacy that a capacity for empathy is a necessary quality in a friend. A narcissist may also be a valuable companion. 

December 15th, 2012

“No Contact” the Right Way and the Wrong Way Message boards are replete with advice for…

“No Contact” the Right Way and the Wrong Way

Message boards are replete with advice for partners in borderline relationships to go “No Contact” - effect a sudden cold silence, “change the phone number!”, “block the e-mails!”, “run away into the dark of the night”… .

The message boards are also filled with many painful, failed attempts to go NC (No Contact)… with the “No Contact-ors” repeatedly going back to the borderline partner - initiated by the non-borderline as often as by the borderline.

So why does NC fail?

Possibly because there is too much emphasis on the tactics and too little emphasis on the true objectives and priorities. Some times, non-borderlines launch into “No Contact” campaigns with only a vague understanding of what they are doing and they end up engaging in something that would be better called “the silent treatment”. The silent treatment is not good - it is often characterized by professionals as an emotional manipulation; an abusive action in and of itself.

Where is the “disconnect”?

Let’s face it - partners leave Borderline relationships because they are rejected or they need to protect themselves or protect their children from physical abuse, emotional abuse, or verbal abuse. But most departing partners still love the borderline and are often bonded to their partner in an unhealthy way - in some cases to a level that could be described as co-dependent.

If this wasn’t a significant, underlying factor, we wouldn’t even need to talk about “No Contact” here. When you leave some one you love, it’s important to really understand yourself and the unique hurdles you face.

So, what should you do?

The first thing is to determine if you are really ready to leave. It seems like a very simple point, but there needs to be a real, mature commitment that leaving is the right thing to do (assuming you have a choice) and that you are serious about it- not just testing the waters.

The second thing is to accept that when you leave a relationship (or are spurned), the most important thing for you is to get over the x-partner and move on to the next phase of your life.

Without a doubt, ending of the relationship with one that you love is heartbreaking. It is for every one. But, no matter how difficult or incomprehensible it is, it doesn’t change the realties above.

Now “No Contract” makes sense

“No Contact” is mostly about the non-borderline forcing “distance” into the relationship to help the non-borderline heal; to get the “space” needed to get over the hurt; get on with their lives.

The key elements of “No Contact” are

~to get the partner out of your day-to- day life,

~ to stop thinking in terms of a relationship,

~ to take them out of your vision of the future,

~ to stop wondering about how they are perceiving everything you are doing, and

~ to stop obsessing with how they are reacting (or not reacting) or what they are doing.

These are the simple objectives of “No Contact”. You may need to remind yourself every day of what you are trying to do. It takes focus and determination to do this - at a time when you probably just want to sit down and cry. Just keep reminding yourself that it takes great strength and determination to be emotionally healthy.

So where does sudden silence, changing of the phone number, blocking the e-mails, running away into the night, come in?

These are just tactics for accomplishing the goals above; there are many others. And often, the more subtle, less “in your face” tactics work as well - even better. A more direct approach- simply saying you think your partner is unhealthy, or acting as if you don’t find them attractive any more - can cool a relationship and create a lot of emotional distance pretty quickly. You know this person as well as anyone - you know what will work; what to say that will cause them to pull back.

And herein lies the problem.

If you really don’t want to “disconnect”, if you’re hurt and timid and it’s not a high priority get healthy, you will find many reasons not to do the obvious. Or, even more common, if you are still holding out some hope, or are strugglng with uncertainty, you will likely fear the permanence of such action and purposely select something ineffective and secretly hope that it fails.

Let’s call all of this, “dubious intent.”

When the cure becomes the disease.

The problem with the oft suggested “No Contact” tactics (blocking the e-mails, and silence) is that, when coupled with “dubious intent”, they can easily be misdirected into ways to vent anger, to punish, to manipulate, to make a statement, to defend a principle, to make someone appreciate you, to try to force someone to listen to you, … to even win some one back (?!).

And these tactics will often generate a non- productive counter response with the borderline partner. Along with high emotions - the borderline partner’s fear of abandonment may be triggered and they may try harder to hold onto the relationship - or possibly they won’t be able to cope and will seek retribution.

You could, at the same time, feel very guilty for what you’ve done, and when your anger subsides, find yourself asking to be accepted back into the relationship - maybe with less self esteem than when you left.

None of this is healthy disengagement. This is only advancing a dysfunctional relationship to a higher level of dysfunctionally.

No Contact is mostly about you

If the “x” is sending you e-mail, the biggest problem is not that they are sending it - but rather that you are reading it, and/or are stressed out about it. Ignored, unread e-mail are harmless.

No Contact is about dealing with this aspect of “you”.

If you don’t have the discipline to not read their e-mail, for example, then have your e-mail program route it to the trash. Accept that you’re hurting emotionally, and use this type of “crutch” to protect yourself against yourself.

But also understand that “not reading”, the e-mail, for example, is a lot different than having the “x” receive an “undeliverable” auto-reply. The “undeliverable” auto-reply” is really a way that communicates your vulnerability or your anger or your ______ (fill in the blank). If you do this you are opening a door into your recovery process… so, ask yourself “why?”.

True Disengagement (No Contact) Works.

The key points:

1) No contact” is conceptually about disconnecting from a relationship. The name describes, more or less, the key tactic… but NC is not the goal… the goal is for you to disengage yourself from the relationship.

2) The harder it is for you to disengage, or the more you are enmeshed in the relationship, the “higher a wall” you should erect (to keep yourself out). This is the first basis you should use to decide on which tactics are appropriate.

3) Straight forward tactics are the best way to effect “No Contact”. Dramatic tactics work well too, but before using them, carefully examine your motives to be sure they are healthy and you are aimed at the right target.

4) If your partner doesn’t start to disengage and give you “space” then more forceful methods may be in order to absolutely “close of the door”… but if you have options, try to pick those that neutralize the partner - not trigger them. Look for “defusing” tactics first. This is the second basis for selecting which tactics are appropriate.

What if it is just too overwhelming

Expect that this will be too overwhelming. Leaving some one that you love, hurts. Minimizing the damage, in the long run, is what this is all about - the price for that is hurt today.

Hurt is part of your healing - it’s your greatest challenge and you must be committed to work through it - which is where we began this discussion (paragraph 6).

Be prepared to seek help. If you find yourself slipping into depression, ruminating, etc - recognize early that these are not signs that you should go back into a dysfunctional relationship, but rather signs of your own private struggle with your emotional enmeshment. It is common in these relationships.

When this happens, you may need professional help, possibly medication, to mediate the depression and the ruminating before it breaks your resolve; drives you back into an unhealthy relationship.

Whenever you are mentally impaired; chemically imbalanced; or in a state of anxiety, you will likely make bad decisions, and even feel overwhelmed by the need to make them. If you are in a depression this whole endeavor may seem insurmountable.

But it is not - it’s your emotions, distorting your reality. Find the time - spend the money - get professional help and get and keep yourself stabilized.

Leaving someone you love is difficult. There is no question about that. And, You will lkely feel insecure, uncomfortable, and empty when you are on your own… but this is just a natural unwinding of the intertwinement of two people… everyone feels this.

Disengagement. No contact. Out of sight - out of mind. It works best when you fully understand it.

~ Facing The Facts

ETA: Posting this as part of ongoing empathetic crisis thinky thoughts on my part; I realize the problematic aspects of the term “borderline” but am very interested in how to disengage from narcissists and other types of unhealthy codependent relationships—I’ve spent much of the past few years doing just that; I agree with various parts of this version of “the speech” but would never tell someone in crisis “You are doing this wrong.” It’s very hard to detoxify yourself from your own need to be around shitty people. It’s why I go to meetings.

September 28th, 2012

"[W]ho studied psychology in med school and who has spent years doing research on psychopaths after…"

“[W]ho studied psychology in med school and who has spent years doing research on psychopaths after she made the mistake of marrying one herself.”

- That is how it usually starts.
August 30th, 2012

You end up having things in common with the weirdest people.

You end up having things in common with the weirdest people.

August 25th, 2012

mikkipedia: Narcissists are (a) extremely sensitive to personal criticism and (b) extremely…


Narcissists are (a) extremely sensitive to personal criticism and (b) extremely critical of other people. They think that they must be seen as perfect or superior or infallible, next to god-like (if not actually divine, then sitting on the right hand of God) — or else they are worthless. There’s no middle ground of ordinary normal humanity for narcissists. They can’t tolerate the least disagreement. In fact, if you say, “Please don’t do that again — it hurts,” narcissists will turn around and do it again harder to prove that they were right the first time; their reasoning seems to be something like “I am a good person and can do no wrong; therefore, I didn’t hurt you and you are lying about it now…” — sorry, folks, I get lost after that. Anyhow, narcissists are habitually cruel in little ways, as well as big ones, because they’re paying attention to their fantasy and not to you, but the bruises on you are REAL, not in your imagination. Thus, no matter how gently you suggest that they might do better to change their ways or get some help, they will react in one of two equally horrible ways: they will attack or they will withdraw. Be wary of wandering into this dragon’s cave — narcissists will say ANYTHING, they will trash anyone in their own self-justification, and then they will expect the immediate restoration of the status quo. They will attack you (sometimes physically) and spew a load of bile, insult, abuse, contempt, threats, etc., and then — well, it’s kind of like they had indigestion and the vicious tirade worked like a burp: “There. Now I feel better. Where were we?” They feel better, so they expect you to feel better, too. They will say you are nothing, worthless, and turn around immediately and say that they love you. When you object to this kind of treatment, they will say, “You just have to accept me the way I am. (God made me this way, so God loves me even if you are too stupid to understand how special I am.)” Accepting them as they are (and staying away from them entirely) is excellent advice. The other “punishment” narcissists mete out is banishing you from their glorious presence — this can turn into a farce, since by this point you are probably praying to be rescued, “Dear God! How do I get out of this?” The narcissist expects that you will be devastated by the withdrawal of her/his divine attention, so that after a while — a few weeks or months (i.e., the next time the narcissist needs to use you for something) — the narcissist will expect you to have learned your lesson and be eager to return to the fold. If you have learned your lesson, you won’t answer that call. They can’t see that they have a problem; it’s always somebody else who has the problem and needs to change. Therapies work at all only when the individual wants to change and, though narcissists hate their real selves, they don’t want to change — they want the world to change. And they criticize, gripe, and complain about almost everything and almost everyone almost all the time. There are usually a favored few whom narcissists regard as absolutely above reproach, even for egregious misconduct or actual crime, and about whom they won’t brook the slightest criticism. These are people the narcissists are terrified of, though they’ll tell you that what they feel is love and respect; apparently they don’t know the difference between fear and love. Narcissists just get worse and worse as they grow older; their parents and other authority figures that they’ve feared die off, and there’s less and less outside influence to keep them in check. ^

This is just a small excerpt from the most gloriously mean-spirited (and accurate!) description of narcissists I’ve ever read.

worth reblogging under current circs

August 24th, 2012

It is interesting, the belief narcissists have that they can just wait a while after they’ve…

It is interesting, the belief narcissists have that they can just wait a while after they’ve done something shitty, until they think everyone is over it, and then pretend nothing happened. Like they will just start emailing you or whatever, on totally banal topics, and you’re like, why is this in my inbox. There’s stuff on the table that you need to acknowledge.

I mean, I can see why they think this course of action would work. It often does! Narcissists depend on people like us, who will make excuses for them, and think about how they had the worst childhood, or they don’t know any better, or they were so nice that one time, or whatever. We get invested in protecting their feelings, so we don’t speak up. And then if at some point we start to learn or grow, or have some boundaries, and we say, whoa, that was not ok, that upset me, the narcissist doesn’t know what to do.

Obviously what you should do when your friend says she is upset is say “I’m sorry I didn’t intend to hurt your feelings, let’s talk.” Or even, “You know, I kind of did intend to hurt your feelings, and I’m sorry about that, we really should talk.”

Saying things like “I knew you’d be upset,” or “Other people made you think that,” or “I’m disappointed in you,” or suddenly coincidentally having a crisis is the classic narcissist response to someone attempting to introduce the topic of other people’s feelings. They want to bring things right back to themselves. And if you push back, even a teeny bit, if you say, “That really hurt my feelings,” they will flip the fuck out. It’s so threatening to them.

For most of us, it seems obvious and kind and generous to say, “I’m sorry, let’s talk,” instead of generating a 10-point manifesto on Why I Don’t Need to Apologize or doing the “I’m going to pretend it didn’t happen game” or the “OH MY GOD I SUDDENLY AM HAVING A CRISIS TRIGGERED BY YOUR FEELINGS” gambit. We tend to have the opposite problem—we over-apologize, we over empathize. But I’m realizing narcissists are super threatened when their friends get in touch with their own feelings—probably largely because the narcissist fears being held accountable for their actions. If their favorite doormat suddenly sticks up for herself, that’s very destabilizing to them, which makes the thought of an apology and an honest discussion terrifying.

They will throw away years of friendship rather than have that discussion, and they will justify it to themselves in all kinds of ways. It’s actually pretty sad, I guess. This is not  about anyone on tumblr (though it may apply to many people on tumblr!), or at least not to anyone I interact with on tumblr, maybe they have blogs on here. So don’t ask me if it’s about you, just think about what it might mean if it is.

July 16th, 2012

"‘I am entirely selfish,’ he said ruefully, ‘and always hoping that someone will tell me to behave,…"

“‘I am entirely selfish,’ he said ruefully, ‘and always hoping that someone will tell me to behave, someone will make herself responsible for me and make me be grown-up.’
He is altogether selfish, she thought in some surprise, the only man I have ever sat and talked to alone, and I am impatient; he is simply not very interesting. ‘Why don’t you grow up by yourself?’ she asked him, and wondered how many people—how many women—had already asked him that.
‘You’re clever.’ And how many times had he answered that way?
This conversation must be largely instinctive, she thought with amusement, and said gently, ‘You must be a very lonely person.’ All I want is to be cherished, she thought, and here I am talking gibberish with a selfish man. ‘You must be very lonely indeed.’”


The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson (via novazembla)

All I want is to be cherished, and here I am talking gibberish with a selfish man.

All I want is to be cherished, and here I am talking gibberish with a selfish man.


(via blackamazon)

We’re done. It’s done. “Why don’t you grow up by yourself?”