An oxymoron? Two mutually exclusive concepts in one term? I suppose, but we should look at the idea more closely. In some ways, a narcissist can teach us all some lessons about loving.
First, people need to be loved. We might see the narcissist taking advantage of this fact, but it is important for us to remember also. In fact, people will do almost anything to feel loved. Some people will accept a lie, a false love, rather than feel unloved. The narcissist can spot someone like this quickly and may either move in to exploit the need or simply wait and store the information until a later time. Narcissists, in general, are users.
Second, love can be faked. Do the right things, say the right things—and it will look so much like the love people want that they will believe, without regard for truth. We live in a culture of such need that fake love is accepted readily. Narcissists are experts at faking love to get what they want.
Third, our culture doesn’t really know what love is. Popular media presents such a self-serving view of love that we tend to look for the personal gain in every loving act. The commitment of love, the willingness to sacrifice, is almost rare. If your marriage no longer serves you, end it. If your unborn baby doesn’t fit into your plans, get rid of it. If your parents are becoming a burden, ignore them. We are not a loving culture. The narcissist has no qualms about lying about love because he has no understanding of what love really is.
I don’t mean to be cynical about love. I guess what I am trying to say is that we can help to protect our children against the abuse of narcissists BY LOVING THEM. Teach them what real love is by showing them real love. If you can’t, maybe it’s time to pray.
Okay, off the soapbox…