Boasting

It’s Narcissist Friday!

Many people have the idea that narcissists boast a lot.  Yet, if I put that out as one of the identifying characteristics of a narcissist, many would not agree.  Only the most overt narcissists boast, maybe the television narcissist.  The others, well let’s just say they think of themselves “more highly than they ought to think.”

The first two characteristics of narcissism, according to the DSM4, are as follows:

1.      Has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)

2.      Is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love

(You can read the rest here.)

Rather than boasting, the narcissist maintains a consistent perspective of being better than others.  He is more important to the company, the family, the church, or whatever than anyone else.  He is smarter, more generous, more desirable, and more compassionate.  He is simply better than you and me.

One of the narcissists I worked with in an organization became offended and vindictive when I didn’t cry out for his wisdom at a time when I was struggling.  Never mind that I knew he would come in and use the situation for his own purpose and glory.  Never mind that the people I was serving didn’t want him there.  They knew that he had nothing to offer them.  But he wanted to be seen as the savior, the one with wisdom others should heed.  When I didn’t call on him, he accused me of all kinds of evil and managed to blackball me within the organization.  All because he wanted to show that he was smarter than me.  He had and still has a “grandiose sense of self-importance.”

Those who live and work with narcissists learn very quickly that they are not as wise or as good as the narcissist.  One of the phrases many have learned to hate is, “Yes, but is that wise?”  Only the narcissist is wise.  His way is the right way, no matter how much sense your way makes.  Remember that he doesn’t have to be right; he just has to be better.

This can be very damaging for those in relationship with narcissists.  In fact, children of narcissists usually exhibit one of two responses.  They either embrace the judgment of the narcissist and become weak and fearful; or they become narcissists themselves just to make themselves believe they are acceptable.  It is very common for those in narcissistic relationships to second-guess their decisions simply because those decisions have been questioned and belittled so often.

The narcissist doesn’t really have to boast.  Anyone in close relationship should know that he/she is better.  Those who don’t know probably don’t matter.  They are obviously too incompetent to understand.

I realize that sounds harsh, but it seems to be the way narcissists think.  I once had a man tell me that he thought he had “presence.”  “Presence,” to him, meant that when he walked into a room, people noticed.  He made a difference just being there.  That wasn’t boasting, it was just telling the truth.

Yes, I know there are people who are loud and who brag to anyone who will listen.  That’s usually what we think of when we think of boasting.  But when the stories are all so positive and just on the edge of credibility is that boasting or just the narcissist’s perspective?  And when you feel somehow less in the presence of the narcissist, is that because of his boasting, or is he just better?

You see what I mean.  They don’t boast.  Most of them don’t at least.  Oh, they might lie about their accomplishments and accept praise when others are “smart enough” to give it.  And they might claim the ability to do things they have never been able to do successfully.  And they might claim superior knowledge based on inferior information and experience.  And they might take credit for things others have done.  And they might have ridiculous ideas of what they will someday accomplish…

…but boasting, well that’s for amateurs.

 

 

 

143 Comments

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143 responses to “Boasting

  1. Rox

    Now that you say it, I can see that my N, who is quite arrogant, doesn’t need to boast; his silence and negative views of others say it all. During our 20-year friendship, he used to praise the humor in my emails, lamenting that he couldn’t think of puns as quickly. Now, he doesn’t comment on my humor at all, and only responds to the parts of the message that directly address something he is doing. His silence, or the disdain he so loudly proclaims regarding others, is broadcast as, “Yes, you little people can play your little games and have your little jokes. I’m too far above you to acknowledge you or them.” If he could get crickets to chirp at my messages, he would, if only to prove how little he wants me to think I mean to him. It’s really so sad what he’s become.

    • Kay

      Wow, you just described my N mother, Rox. I use the phrase “willful disinterest” when describing her position in our lives, or rather our position in hers!

      • Troubled

        Kay I had to comeback and see your post many referred to. Willful Disinterest. Yes good term. For me that means…I want to scream…we are friends…we have met! Where I come from that means if I saw a friend at an event we would talk, hang out, sit together. Not him…he is a stranger…I have known him for a year and a half. Weve met. Did he forget. Well turns out for a N it’s always a new day I guess. Do I need to remind him you have been to my house, Ive been to yours, I know your dogs name…Agh….He looks through me, or not at me. I am invisible…I am shunned..I am discarded because I could no promote his career…I guess…I was a friend someone he would come to see 3 times a day just to say hay. Is that willfull disinterest?

    • Joy

      If I didn’t know better I’d think you were talking about my ex. You described it perfectly.

      • Troubled

        Weirdly Joy, It could be I often feel we are all referring to the same person. It would be funny if it were not so scary. Zombies among us.

    • Troubled

      Rox this is what the N and my world has done. It is covert and no one but me knows. “If only to prove how little he want me to think I mean to him” That sums it up. Every move my N makes…He knows i know, its a farce. That is the crazy\making. I know he has issue with these people, we have had conversations at length. I am sure part of the reason he moved on is I never really said anything bad about anyone. I would laugh chuckle nod but really i do not throw stones. Too many skelatons in my closet for that…hahahaa. I live by the golden rule so I guess we were destined to not be friends. I just wish I did not have to face the drama daily and him fawning over all those that he sat with me and berated. Me remember, I am invisible. It is very hard to be shunned…for no good reason. So for all those that have been devalued or discarded…here is a hug from me. No one deserves what these N’s dish out.

  2. Tonya Scarborough

    Boasting is for amateurs – couldn’t have said it better myself. And what an important concept. It threw me for years until I read about covert aggression. I know 2 narcissists, and ironically, one is better than everyone else in “humility” and the other in being a “martyr”.

  3. DLD

    The vast majority of “my” narcissists are arrogant AND boastful. They are CONSTANTLY talking about themselves. C.O.N.S.T.A.N.T.L.Y. They brag to each other and to anyone that will listen. They are “supply” for each other.
    (Of course, they hate me because I do see them as “all-knowing and all-

  4. DLD

    *(Of course, they hate me because I do NOT see them as “all-knowing and all-powerful.”)

    • Troubled

      Yes that is how I got on the Naughty list. I forgot to agree with his backstabbing. Oops. I am to a point of laughing but really it is a roller coaster…these wonderful people here just went through hell week with me. But DLD you are right on my N is all knowing and smarter than most…in his mind. Where I get lost is he needs someone to help him up the career ladder so he has idols and yet an N cannot worship another…It is so confusing. So I know he idolizes a top person at our company but is that not the very thing they hate. He will use that person and try to take their spot? He has infiltrated the top persons team. For me it just leaves me with OK, now what? I was a friend for a year and a half now Im not worth talking to. Invisible me. I don’t like being left in the dust of mister all knowing. So you say they hate you. So what do you do…are you getting even? outsmarting them? losing sleep like me? (i say with a smile). I am only two weeks into knowing I had a N in my life so I am absorbing info. Trying to impart wisdom where I can but mainly whining 🙂

      • DLD

        Troubled: Getting even? No. I will let God deal with the N. It may take MANY years, but I have seen 100% of my Ns destroy themselves (and their relationships). My goal is to not be “bullied” out of my workplace, because I know that is what the N wants (plus, he has already “bullied” two other people out of our workplace), but, due to my N-caused PTSD, it will be very difficult to stay for much longer. I have learned to PITY “my” Ns and, looking at them through the eyes of “pity,” they no longer “get to me.” Most importantly, I REFUSE to socialize with Ns. Yes, it means that I don’t go the office Christmas party, but I don’t have to see/hear the Ns. Remember: THEY ARE A “LIE.” It’s NOT YOU, it’s THEM (the Ns). You have my empathy and sympathy and prayers as you navigate this difficult journey. ((Hugs))

  5. Penny

    Their “boasting” can sound be both “positive “and “negative”. For instance: if you celebrated your birthday at Disneyland, THEY are going to Paris [for a month]; if you have a headache, THEY have brain tumor; if you just bought a refurbished iPhone, they OWN apple stock; if you just broke your leg, THEY need a hip replacement; If you make turkey soup after Thanksgiving, THEY don’t eat leftovers; if you find a deal at Target, THEY only shop Nordstrom [note: if you shop Nordstrom, THEY “can’t afford it” ]; if you have a family dog, they have a rare Chinese cat that doesn’t shed; if you survived a flood, their great-grandmother was on the Titanic; If you saw the movie “Captain Phillips”, THEY went to see “Gravity”. At IMAX. On opening day. With Brad Pitt. No matter who, what, where, when, why–they are clearly superior to you. Always. Even in their sleep.

    • Penny, your comments are more consistent with how my husband is than the article this week, so I am a little confused. Now he’s on a boasting about how much better he is than he used to be. He talks all the time about how he used to rage and he used to hate people and he sued to not care, and now he’s so in control, and he likes even hippie college professors, and he encourages everyone, and he’s a superhero. Before he was a self-justified vigilante because everyone but him in the world was wrong and he was going to put everyone in their place. But since he’s been called on that so many times now, and he’s in counseling, now he’s working the mercy side. Look at how improved I am! I’m the most merciful person ever now–let me tell you all the reaching out I just did (when he was, of course, out of sight or earshot of anyone else, and the people he is merciful to are strangers whom none of us will ever see again).
      So. He went from destructive narcissist to altruistic narcissist. And I have no idea what to do with that. He’s completely smug and happy with himself these days, and at least for the present, I think I’m out of danger. But it’s so wearying. I’m just trying to get through this life with Jesus, feeling neither too superior nor too inferior, seeking the balance that says I’m a sinner desperately in need of grace, but God gives it and gives me a path to follow, and I’m trying to walk that path WITH HIM, never sure if I’ll ever get better, never sure if I’ll slip and fall, but just trying to go the distance with Jesus there with me all the time.
      But I get so tired. And I want to be happy.

      • Penny

        Repol: my N once screamed at me “I have had nothing but a servant’s heart toward you!” Get it? Boasting about being a servant is an oxymoron in the real world. But the N lives in a fantasy world; the N still “reigns supreme” whether it is with an iron fist (controlling) or a velvet glove (intimidating). Either way, it’s always about THEM, they are better than you, they are center of the universe, & the world turns on its axis b/c of them & their “benevolence”, & we are “so lucky to have them.” It’s backwards boasting.

      • Fellow Survivor

        Repol and all,

        This is a really good read about forgiving the narcissists. It gives some perspective on how we can deal with the situation and start to repair the damage done to our very selves.

        http://narc-attack.blogspot.com/2006/09/fuzzy-morality.html

      • Troubled

        who could say it better. Happy, loved and drama free.

    • Troubled

      Penny, This makes me worried that I have more N’s in my life than I realized. I worry that I just went from a level 3 survivor to a 1. That could explain so much. So I sit and think were my parents N’s… am I attracted to N’s? As I have been blindsided by an N at work, I am questioning everything and everyone. I do have to say I love what you wrote and I wish I had seen Gravity with Brad Pitt because that is what definitely would have made the movie better. haahaha. But seriously and it does have to be about them. All them…As I learn and read here I realize I actually live in an environment where I don’t get to be sick…If I sniffle they take to bed rest. If I have a headache, they have a migraine.Tonight I screamed can I just finish my sentence. No I could not, he walked out. As my office N issue unfolds all of a sudden I am not sure what I live with at home…it’s not good. That might explain why I am so damned needy in this thread huh. Sorry guys in the midst of it all I lost my father…my true best friend…and maybe Im just lost. But I know that I don’t deserve what Im getting.

  6. DLD

    @ Penny: LOL Yes, they HAVE to “win!”

  7. prairiemom

    I appreciate how you describe a narc as “boasting” without obviously bragging. It does put it into better perspective for me, as I did not realize that boasting was what I had been witnessing. After reading this, I’m pretty sure what I have witnessed could be called “covert boasting,” and I believe it serves the purpose of making the narc feel most superior and also the purpose of controlling and manipulating others’ actions and opinions of the N.

    What I have seen is “implied” boasting in the form of criticism. He may criticize his wife’s friend, saying she is not as biblically submitted to her husband as she ought to be, thus implying that HE has the superior knowledge of how a woman should obey her husband and that his wife had better distance herself from this friend and follow HIS rules for submission because HE alone knows what is true and biblical. He listens to the pastor, not in order to learn, but to find out if the pastor is wise enough to support the narc’s own superior opinions, and if he does not, then he has criticism against the pastor… because the N knows better. He criticizes another person’s cooking and gives suggestions of how it would be better, thus implying his superior knowledge of cooking. He voices doubts about the true Christianity and salvation of certain people, thus implying that he is a superior Christian and is discerning enough to scrutinize a person’s faith to detect falsehood, and also as a means of controlling his wife and stepson’s association with others whom he believes to be a threat to himself. He does not live out the grace or love offered in the Bible but clings to Old Testament legalism, proclaiming his superiority over those so-called Christians who do not follow old Testament law. He even criticizes other people’s kindness, accusing them of just looking for a “pet project,” thus implying that only he has true compassion and right motives and the discernment to judge another person’s motives and actions. When he occasionally does does something generous, rather than obviously “boasting” about it, he “humbly” preaches about how others should do the same kinds of things that he has done if they are truly Christians.

    Putting others down seems to bolster his self-image by comparison and give him a certain power over others. His self-proclaimed superiority is a means by which he can control. For his victims, one of whom is just a boy, the result is fear and awe of him, coupled with a very low self-image in comparison with the N’s superior and all-knowing persona. I think it is much more damaging than overt boasting because an overt braggart is just an obnoxious person with a low self image who elicits pity (and perhaps irritation), but this sneaky and critical kind of “boasting” attacks and wounds other people and allows the N to control others for fear of falling under his all-knowing judgement. Thus he has no use for me or my husband because we do not buy his “superiority,” and we do not care in the least what he may think or say of us, and that makes us dangerous to him and his power. It is still hard for me to wrap my mind around, and I really appreciate your posts helping me to do so.

    • prodigalkatherine

      I completely agree with your distinction that it’s not just the bragging but the deliberate tearing down of another person.
      There was an individual in my family’s life who we gave odd jobs to because of his challenging financial situation. We also fed him regularly. He began to regularly preface “requests” with the words “may I make a suggestion” and then making it clear we were “doing it wrong”. I don’t often purchase juice but we were around the holidays and Ocean Spray Cranberry was on special. I was “gently” reprimanded for buying the wrong brand that wasn’t organic and asked to get the proper kind in the future “because it was better for the children”. This man did not have children of his own and had never cared for them. He also used to comment that if he was a wife he would keep tidier cabinets.

      I remember feeling demoralized and overwhelmed whenever I agreed to let him do odd jobs to justify giving him money because it seemed he always had to “put me in my place” by telling others he would keep a better house, ect. It was very strange and left me feeling ashamed and wanting to avoid him.

      • Troubled

        well your post makes mr wonder why on earth we put up with these people. My office N is constantly cutting down me, my husband and those around us. It is their calling card. I got discarded for calling him out on the very crutch of his existance. I called him judgemental. So part of me wishes I could take that day back, then he would still be a friend. Oh wait Kind of a friend, we were never really sure where we stood with this person. Recently I had opportunity to join another club. They were open and caring. Wow. This N had left a gaping hole in my soul. I trusted a person and they so quickly and completely discarded me it was devastating. The whole process shocked me and I am still healing. So my point is, you are good and you are right, avoid him if you can. Or like me, learn how to beat him at his own game. Knowledge is power. Be strong.

      • Cecilia K

        Prodigal Katherine, my poor ex-boyfriend was saddled for a while with a girlfriend who couldn’t even make a peanut butter-apple wrap correctly! Ha ha

    • Cecilia K

      Prairie Mom, your description here is how I think my ex also “boasted”. His was also implied boasting, in how he criticized others, or in how he was always right (and of course, he denied having to always be right). I remember in a couple of our “heated discussions,” he actually said after stating his opinion, “There is no other way to think about this,” thus pre-empting me from disagreeing with him, and I would refrain from saying, “Oh yes there is,” like I wanted to, because I knew I would be in for a hailstorm of belittling. But yes, he implied his sense of superiority without overt boasting. His time was more valuable than others’, so he couldn’t wait in line like everyone else, or he would not be denied access to me when I was at the doctor’s office, and lied to the receptionist so he could see me.

      And your mention of criticizing other people’s kindness made me think of when he found fault with me sponsoring a child with Compassion, because I should be helping people within my own circle instead. I suppressed my impulse to ask to whom he was referring, because I feared him shaming me because I should have known to whom he was referring. I knew of no one close to me, other than perhaps himself, who was in need of financial assistance (he had large legal bills from a custody battle and was unemployed at the time). I had not volunteered to help him because a) I didn’t have any extra to give him, b) I thought his family was helping him, and c) I thought that would hurt his pride for his girlfriend to give him money. But that just really floored me that he could find fault with that. I was in shock and didn’t know how to respond to that. I think I just said that was how I tithed some of my money.

  8. Whisper

    How does a N become grand without boasting? He does it in a subtle & undetected way. The N moves in like a fog. He’s learned how to creep in slowly and infiltrate the lives of the people around him. Most of us are caught off guard as he expresses his strong opinions which are often disguised as helpful suggestions. His sole purpose is to make himself look grand while reducing everyone around him to a whisper. I know because it happened to me.

    • Troubled

      Yes, the N in my life always had a label for people. As I look back every conversation was about him taking someone else down. And when I pointed it out to him he quickly discarded me and has promptly started lavishing attention on all those he was cutting down. He called them Weird, pushy, high maintenance, drama queens, rags, dont know what they are talking about people. So when I called him judgemental i was out in an instant. It has been my experience in life to never trust a person that talks about others but this person he was charming and funny and I must be special for him to confide in me his innermost thoughts. Haha, I guess that is why my fall is so hard, I thought I WAS SOMEHOW SPECIAL… funny in trying to help another all of a sudden the picture becomes clearer. It has drove me crazy, why does this bother me so much. I only work with this person, why would I lose sleep over it. I thought I was special and what I am learning here is that no one is special to an N. That is a hard concept for us normal, loving, kind people. There are zombies amongst us. No wonder it is such a strong thread in todays programming. Hmmm, I have avoided all things zombie but maybe I should look into it, I might learn something. I am probably only person in universe that did not do the Twighlight series. No wonder Im so Naive…hahaha…I ramble, its late I should be sleeping but why I was discarded tends to dominate my thoughts. I stress over how bad my next day at work will be. So your Whisper is my Zombie. Same story different day. It is weird here, we all write about different people but all those people seem to share the same DNA thread.

  9. noel6119

    I agree that they believe they are above everyone else. I believe my xnh is very intelligent, but he has no wisdom. I believe that wisdom comes from the fear of God and he has stated many times that he doesn’t know if he believes in God. How could he? He believes that he comes first.

  10. UnForsaken

    Rox and Tanya S.–your experiences sound So like mine! Also, Prairiemom, criticism is a favorite hobby to Ns–you got it! But I also have experienced jealousy for similar likes tastes or praise. Your post Really made me laugh, Penny. He just loves to “swap” big exper. stories(true ones!)and dramatize them. Dave, the constant questioning of my own choices as a “child” of the N is right on it ! Everyone has something great to say here .

  11. Smarter Now

    The N I dated was a boaster. He was arrogant and proud of it. It seemed like he was always looking for an opportunity to find someone else’s mistake so that he could brag about how he “did it better” or “how it should be”. I got so sick of hearing about how much better he was than everyone else so I dumped him. He is engaged to another woman in our church now…I hope she knows what she’s getting into.

    • Troubled

      Haha. i am pretty new to the N concept but yes dont you just want to run through the streets telling all what you know. but you can’t. no one would believe you.

  12. Rox

    You know, as we discuss the “willful disinterest” (Thanks, Kay, for that phrase that describes so well an N’s disregard for we “lesser people.”) of our Ns, I wonder if, somewhere in a part of their minds from which they run screaming, our Ns don’t envy us our “simple” joys. My N may sit judgmentally in his golden tower of disdain, looking down on us with contempt, but I’ll bet he secretly (very secretly) would love to be having a good time with we “underlings” who know how to play nicely with others. Carrying all that negativity, contempt, and scorn just sounds tiring. No wonder our Ns are usually so mean: they’re exhausting themselves and they’re too busy cutting us down to realize it.

    • UnForsaken

      Yes! Kay’s description is perfect. Often, I see the N’s choices as unconscious but neglectful, because their goals are all they see. But “Willful” is still always there! And envy or jealousy is there even when I can’t see it–not always the active feeling but the natural response in action!

    • Troubled

      Hahaha. Ok I was crying and you made me laugh. Yes the other day at a meeting I walked up to a group N was in and started talking and laughing with someone… N just glared at me from his golden tower of disdain…Amazingly others do like me,invisible me(N had me questioning that) for some reason I think I also got discarded because Im not cool enough. Heres the deal, I have never strived for popular crowd, Im not mean enough. He worked so hard to get his spot with the popular crowd and it drives him crazy when I can waltz in and talk with any one of them. I am not one of them but they don’t treat me invisible like he does. Anytime I go visit a popular one he is somewhere nearby. He is dying to know what us underlings are doing.

    • Cecilia K

      That is yummy food for thought, Rox. I think you are probably right that they do secretly envy us.

  13. Troubled

    As I read this weeks N post I think I am surrounded by more N’s than I thought. Whew.

    So I thought N’s liked eachother…or do they repel eachother. I just typed too long of a response on last weeks board but here i see that I could have a bit of the basis of the problem. Could be I am married to a bit of a boaster.

    • UnForsaken

      Troubled, your coming to the same conclusions I have…thankfully not everyone who has N traits is one. They tend to be contagious in thier attitudes and behavior because people think it’s easier to survive–not so ! You’re so right about their attracting And repelling other Ns. I think it depends on if that N agrees or has another all-important goal that doesn’t enable them . It’s about Them , after all! Thank God we don’t have to follow their example —-just Jesus’ !

  14. E

    The N in my life was/is my mother. She has since “ended” the relationship because of my troublesome preoccupation with setting healthy boundaries.

    I laugh thinking about the many occasions on which she boasted that she didn’t boast like some people. “I do favors with no strings attached,” she crowed. “I never throw it up to anyone when I help them! When I did XYZ for this person/church/charity, I did it without being asked. I did it anonymously!” Yes, she enjoyed telling everyone about her “anonymous” good deeds. She enjoyed even more when her efforts went unackowledged and she could assume the martyr position. “I give and give and never ask for anything in return. Never!” She’s been known to list the things she never boasts about. If she weren’t so serious it would be hilarious.

    I wondered if she could hear herself, but now I understand that it really didn’t matter if she made her own reality.

    • Fellow Survivor

      E— “Troublesome preoccupation with setting healthy boundaries” When I read that I just had to LOL. That is a central characteristic of Ns.. They will not accept boundaries, and if you establish them the N will either leave you or ignore the boundaries. They want to do whatever they want, whenever they want, with who ever they want to do it with, with no questions asked. Period. Or there will be a fight/ rage whatever.

      • Troubled

        You know as I read this I see one of the issues. Sometimes in our relationship I would try to lead. You know “hey we should go do this or we should do that”. No go. If it’s not his idea, it’s not happening. Period. And he likes to drive so he knows we will get where we are going. You can only do what he wants, when he wants. Hmm reason 10 why my diagnosis may be correct. I wish I wasn’t hmmm mid life plus…I would love to delve into the study of this craziness…of course it could drive you crazy it seems. Sooo much pain. As is said before if I’m a level 3 survivor, many of you are level 1. Hopefully it helps clarify in all your worlds whether you are a spouse, friend, lover, male or female…the devalue and discard process is the same. It’s not you, it’s them!! So pastor Dave…how about “leading the way with an n” I say half kidding. You have already told me sure I can get on good side by apologizing, which I have not done because … I’m not sure what I’m apologizing for yet. 2…he really hates it when I act insecure, really it pisses him off. So they need an idol but want to be god that is my take. And why do i even care? Yes I’m still under the spell as are many here. As my best friend said, we all just want to be loved. It drives me crazy when I see n laughing it up, charming others. I want to tell them “just wait”. But then in reading here…some will never know he’s an n. I hate that I have to know.

  15. Fellow Survivor

    Can we all agree that these people are just mentally deranged. I could never make the bed right, trim the bushes right, clean the house right, its amazing the woman even wanted to marry me at all because I just can’t seem to do anything right.

    I unfortunately bought into her put downs and started to doubt myself, except for when it came to raising our daughter. I never backed down or doubted myself when that subject was up for debate. The most pathetic example was when she was about 4 years old. We were reading the Great Dr. Suez’s ABC book. You all know, Big A, little a, what begins with A. I can still practically recite that whole book from memory alone and its been over 10 years since I read it last. Anyway, the ex comes in the room while we are reading the book and practicing pronunciation of the letters and sounds and tells me I am reading the book all wrong. I should read it a different way. I just told her ” you are welcome to read this book to our daughter anytime you would like your way” “but while I am reading to her I will read the book the way I think is best” By the time that kid was 11 she had read the entire Harry Potter series of books all in one summer.

    On a separate note, did anyone by chance read the “Junie B Jones” series of books to their kids? That was a fun read especially to a 6 year old.

    • DLD

      @Fellow Survivor: If we walked on water, Ns would tell us we need to take swimming lessons! 🙂

      • Rox

        I love it, DLD! And if we swam, our Ns would fly. We just can’t win with ’em, can we?

      • Fellow Survivor

        Thanks DLD and Rox. Although the pain of the loss is horrible, I would like to, if possible, laugh at our situation, I mean these Ns are a joke aren’t they. Who acts this way? Who treats others like they do? It is a pathetic joke. They are twisted and reptilian, and just very strange people. I am sorry for their childhood, their horrible life experiences, blah, blah, blah. But if anyone outside of our field of view saw how they acted and treated others, especially those closest to them, they would laugh and or cry, so why shouldn’t we? Wouldn’t it be great to go tell the allies and lackeys of our Ns what the Ns say about them when they are not around, and to have them actually believe the truth? That would be so much fun, I think I am going to do it. Really. I am far enough removed that it could be fun to let their friends actually know what the Ns think about them. Lets see, her best friend divorce lawyer, the N thinks she is a horrible mother. Her other best friend, the N thinks she is a horrible gossip. So why not just go tell them. It is the truth, so why shouldn’t I deprive my ex N from her source of secondary narcissistic supply?

        ( I have never had the opportunity to use the word “reptilian” in a sentence, in context, where it made sense, but now I have) yea me!!!!

      • Rox

        “Reptilian” really does fit in this context, because these Ns snake their way into people’s lives, coil around them stealthily, then squeeze the life out of them. They make you cry, scream, spit, and foam at the mouth, as if you’ve been struck by a vicious cobra. Except, the cobra does this not to hurt but because that’s how cobras survive. The N does it because he’s a snake, and he wants you, while he’s pathetically surviving, to feel every lost breath with every insideous squeeze. It’s like a “National Geographic” special but with more pain, more suffering, and less colorful photography.

      • Fellow Survivor

        Rox, you Rock. I don’t know why the descriptive term Reptilian popped into my head, but it did and it fits nicely. The paragraph you just wrote should be required reading of all new students of “living with a narcissists101, and introductory course in human abuse and suffering” The professor hands out copies of you post and starts out by asking “now, just exactly what are we dealing with here?”

      • Rox

        A course like that would have to include a field trip to a zoo-like structure called Narciss-city, where the students get to view Ns in their natural habitat — seated in front of mirrors, grooming themselves, and patting themselves on the back. A few times a day, a bit of Narcissistic Supply is brought to the exhibited species to taunt, ridicule, and demoralize. The school children witness the evil glee in the N’s eyes as it tears into and shreds the Supply’s self-respect, and they recoil in horror, saying, “That’s disgusting! You nasty creatures, leave that Supply alone.” Then, the tour guide adds, “Always remember to keep your positive spirit, loving nature, and empathetic soul away from the jaws and claws of the N or it’ll slice them to pieces.” Had we gone on such excursions when we were little children, we would have recognized these vile, malodorous, snarling beasts immediately and run screaming into the night. Give me things that go bump over things that can dump any day.

      • Fellow Survivor

        Rox, Great analogy. But what if the zoo keeper withheld the N supply and then the children could see not evil glee in the eyes of the zoo specimen creatures , but total horror in the eyes of these creatures. All that would be heard was the sound of the zoo animals crying out ” I’m melting, I’m melting” reference wizard of OZ, wicked witch.

      • Rox

        That’s so true, Fellow Survivor. I’m guessing the caged Ns would make Supply out of the weaker Ns and force them to feed the stronger Ns’ egos. Eventually, the zoo would be down to one N, who’d pound on the glass of the enclosure, howling,”I’m the best! You all know, I’m the best!” Maybe the terror of seeing this creature “melt” before the visitors’ eyes would convince those with N tendencies to seek help, before they start destroying others. This is either classic science fiction or the Muhammad Ali story. I’m not sure which. But I’d love to utter to my N the words, “I’m sending in a shrink, and when you are a sane, rational, loving, and empathetic person, I’ll let you out of the cage.”

  16. Renay

    Wow, I was feeling bad until now. Yesterday I saw my monster for a brief moment and for the first time I clearly saw the smugness and I wanted to slap it right off his face. How did I not see it before? I noticed he does not look at anyone. Literally looks as though he sees no one in front of him. I think part of it is he thinks he’s too good to grace anyone with eye contact, but I also think they avoid eye contact because there are so many people they have pissed off, it’s easier to look past people to avoid confrontation. It’s funny how much he brags about his strength but in reality is the biggest coward I’ve ever met. I don’t know, just bothered by it all still.
    But this zoo scenario just made me laugh. Thanks!

    • Rox

      Renay, I’m glad you’re feeling better. I know I still have those dreadful days, when all I can think about is how much I miss my beloved friend and rage at the monster that consumed him. Ns are a lot like vampires, aren’t they? They look and sound like people we once knew and loved, but their souls are just not there anymore. I think that’s why they can’t look anyone in the eye. The eyes, they say, are the windows to the soul, and our soulless Ns have only their grimy, filthy panes to reflect their inner emptiness. Apropos to the haunted holiday, I have to face my N on All Hallows Eve. Believe me, the prospect is scarier than any ghost story told over any campfire. I won’t look him in the eye either, because I can’t bear to see those lifeless, shark-like orbs that saw only prey where I conveyed partnership. I wonder if Stephen King knows many Ns; if so, he’ll have enough horrific plots to fill a few lifetimes.

      • Troubled

        Rox, You nailed it they are like Vampires. ohhh….no vampire slash Zombie with those lifeless eyes. The eyes that once sparkled. What kills me is they still sparkle for the next victim. He absolutely knows people adore him. He actually on many occasions has been like “No matter what I do they still adore me”. Rox you may not have caught my thread but I made the mistake of telling this N he was Judgemental. Thats all. Just a flipant comment because he was always putting everyone down. So a simple little thing that I should be able to apologize for..and I am invisible. Done 1 and 1/2 years of friendship over in an instant. Very weird. He won’t discuss it’s my problem, Im confused and insecure. Ha! I am neither. That is when I stumbled across the N word. So today I have to face the N. I work with him and cant seem to get him out of my life. He goes from either acting normal in front of others to leaving the room if I’m around but when no one is around he is viscious to me or I am invisible. He will say why are you here? why don’t you work from home? So today I look for strength to deal with him and wonder why I care. All I want is for him to be nice again. This is my workplace…I just don’t get why I even have to deal with this. Glad there is yet another person that has come across this…zombieland for real.

    • Troubled

      Oh my gosh Renay. You are so dead on. You know on one hand I am healing because I now realize this is thier problem yet on the other it’s all just so freakishly weird. Today I will come in contact with my office N/Ex Friend. I though I need support so I came here. He will look through me or away from me as if I am not there. Now if my husband is around he will act normal if he can’t manage to avoid us both. Yes smug, and people just worship him. He can put on the charm…to all those people he has stabbed in the back and they don’t know. I fight the urge to go around and tell each one of them what this guy things of them and I have heard it all…Weird, Pushy, Rag, Insecure, She has Issues, Ugghhh. Why do I even care. He acted like a friend and I guess we all need that right? But not just a friend a charming, funny always around to talk friend that I miss. I want to find the word to snap him out of it. Of course Im never even alone with this person for 2 seconds to solve the problem if there were a solve. I guess its good to see Im not the only one coping with some pompous, full of himself N!

      • Fellow Survivor

        Rox, Renay, and Troubled, I believe what you are talking about is What Dave calls the Narcissist’s SUPER POWER. The ability to charm everyone with an act so perfectly rehearsed that it just comes natural to them. No one knows the troubled soul behind the mask.

        Here is a great example. Over Easter my ex N blew off my daughter when my daughter was counting on seeing her mom. Poor girl cried in my arms for hours. Then, on Mothers day the mom also blew off my daughter. Then 2 weeks ago the mom blew my daughter off for a trip they had been planning for 6 months to go to a poker tournament. Now I found out the Ex N will be out of town over both thanksgiving and Christmas. All these hurtful things in the last 8 months.

        But, But, But for my daughter’s birthday the EX N through a big dinner party for daughter and friends. Everyone just crows over how hard your mom works to make your birthday special. Then, last week it was homecoming at the high school. E N invites 15 young couples and their parents to take pictures before the dance. Basically, whenever its “SHOWTIME” with an audience the Ex N is on cue, her lines perfectly rehearsed etc.

        Oh well. It used to be fun to be part of the play but my character was written out because I was not reading the lines correctly.

      • Rox

        I don’t think we can ever read our lines correctly, because our Ns keep rewriting the script. When we walk onstage wearing togas, the N has changed to white tie and tails. When we ask, he says, “What Greek tragedy? This is a romantic comedy!” Well, the makeup’s off, and now we can see who’s underneath. That’s why we were ordered offstage and our parts recast. We finally saw how the play would end.

      • E

        My N mother has this same super power. It had me scratching my head so many times when people at church would ask about her and tell me so say hello and they miss her and so on. When I saw my mother she would never ask after these people or see how they were doing. Instead she would say “did anyone ask about me at church today?” I’m not making this up. They were all so concerned about her, but she was only concerned if they mentioned her. I even had one of them, in a Thank You note to ME, write how thankful she was for all my MOTHER had done. It was really funny how even my church saw me as an extension of my narcissistic mother. After all, who threw the best choir banquets and bridal showers for an elite chosen few? Who’s Sunday School class could not stop talking about the Christmas social? She knew when to be “on” and when her efforts wouldn’t be noticed and applied herself accordingly.

      • Renay

        Im so sorry you have to work with him. People should enjoy their work place. Thank God I’m a teacher, so I get to spend my days with six year olds who feel it is their job to fill my ego.
        I’ve been reading about the phases you go through after dealing with these people. It’s really interesting and makes me feel less crazy. If I had to see him on a regular basis I would go crazy. Some days the thought of him makes me sick, other days I miss him terribly. I can’t help but wonder if he ever thinks of me or my kids, you know the people who a few months ago he would be devistated if they weren’t in his life. I told my daughter the other day I still feel like texting him and she said, “So you like being lied to?” ugh, she’s 13! I should be giving her advice!
        I have to accept I will never understand the deliberation and intent of hurting another. Then walk around looking for new victims with such arrogance! I guess that’s a good thing. What kind of pathetic life is that?
        Next time my sweet 70 year old dad says you can’t trust someone who doesn’t look you in the eye, I’m listening! Funny thing is he called it months ago along with every other sane person in my life. It does make me laugh a little when I think about how I ignored friends and family to have loved me for years and believed a total stranger! Although when out of town family came to visit he put on quite a show. They all left saying, “He’s perfect for you. You have to be more than friends.” How does everything go according to his plan? He knew all my family would be saying that because he acted like we were a couple when they were around. Had me exactly where he wanted me all along. Did I tell you he lies about his age. He’s 43 but tells people he’s 36. Ewww! Just ewww!
        Sorry. Babbling. Good luck at work this week.

      • Renay

        Hey troubled, replied to you but it went down below somewhere. Good luck this week.
        Renay

  17. DLD

    Troubled: MOST of my co-workers and bosses have been and currently are Ns. They have been/are nice to me in front of strangers, but have been/are downright hateful to me in front of each other. Most of their “bullying” of me has been/is when we it’s just the N and I.

    • Troubled

      Rox, Renay, DLD and Fellow Survivor. Yes I’m almost convinced we are talking about the same person. As each person adds their bit here it’s like Ya….Ya…Yaa…me too. IF the supporting cast didn’t sound so different I would think we all had the same friend. Yes I have been written out of the script. Today at said meeting he boldly walks up and the girl I was talking to (a person that he talked nastily about before) He now comes up and starts talking to while I’m standing there and totally does not acknowledge I exist. I wanted to kick him in shins. I turned my back on him twice to rudely talk to others where I could have positioned him into group but every time I did he would start charming the socks off this other co-worker. Really Really. I hate being rude but I have had it. A friend says I can’t confront him I must smile, I know I can’t help this I have already tried. Why do I care. What can I say…Ugh….Yes what school did these people go to. My husband seems to still adore him, I said How could you after how rude he is to me. Feeling lonely. As I read about the funeral I think of how this N…barely took his head out of the fridge to say sorry I heard your dad died but a week later a lady at work was upset because someone else in an office across town passed away and hes all hugging her and soo sorry…What did I do to deserve that. I have left work, skipped meeting and done anything for NC. This person is just such a jack ass. Just to me. How can someone fake friendship for almost 2 year? UGH…The only bright side is I pointed my husband to the N word and he agrees that is him and said he instantly felt better. I would instantly feel better if he would quit this job!! and leave me alone he’s harassing me subtley when no one else is aware. Only I know how much he hates these other people he fawns over. I feel crazy!!

      • Renay

        That’s why they call it “crazy making”. Their goal is to make you feel crazy so you doubt yourself. Next thing you know you’re believing lies and ignoring all your gut instincts. Even when we know what they are we still feel like they have all the control because others can’t see it. It really is utterly crazy!
        I often wonder if he wasn’t so cute would I have fallen so fast and believed all the lies? It’s so shallow, but sadly true. Many of them are very good looking and use their looks to their advantage. He also loved to point out every flaw about others, even in kids. Really, your self esteem is so low you pick on children? Oh, I can go on and on. And apparently I am tonight! I’ll stop rambling!!

      • DLD

        Narcissists will frequently suggest that we “need therapy” and/or “need help.” I work with two narcissists and they NEVER agree with ANYTHING I have to say. They are ALWAYS right and I am ALWAYS wrong.

        ALWAYS

  18. DLD

    E: My father is the N and has the “Super Power.” I didn’t realize that most of my parents’ “friends” were/are either also Ns and or “supply” until after my dear Mom died and NONE of my parents’ “friends” would ask how I was doing — just how my father (who I called “Snake”) was doing.

    • E

      I am sorry about the lack of considerstion when your mother died. That is awful that no one thought about how her death affected you. The same thing happened when my grandmother died. While we weren’t as close as some, her death was very sad and draining on me emotionally because my N mother needed constant consoling on an adult level. I was 17 and my sister was 14. We tried our best, but the depths of my mother’s emotional needs were daunting. I could not even express my own feelings because there was only room for my mother’s. Finally I broke down after the burial when most people had gone. One person hugged me, someone not in my church family and not in my family. Everyone else was busy seeing to my mother’s needs, including my father.

      • DLD

        Thank you, E. I appreciate your thoughtfulness and kind words. I’m very sorry that you, at the very young age of 17, had to experience lack of compassion after your grandmother died. My N father COMPLETELY ignored me on the day of my Mom’s funeral. Her death was ALL about HIM.

      • UnForsaken

        Dear E, I was only a little older when my grandmother past away. One year my grandfather, the next year her, and the next a personal friend unexpectedly, and I sang at all their funerals. Could never do that again! Anyway, it wasn’t ’til all of them were over I could grieve like you. It was in the middle of my grandmother’s that I was thanked by the f. director I saw the N’s face (who had also sungand has a Great voice) . It was a chilling moment as I realized for the first time real jealousy . I can still hardly take it in.

    • UnForsaken

      E, I thoroughly have experienced this and still do. Church people can be so blind (including myself) about that super-imposed extention thing. We are contantly referred to as “the ——– family” and not individally, even though we are adults. Even in behavior!
      DLD, ” Super Power” , wish I’d thought of that neat phrase –It’s so good .My N causes the same reaction out of people …and it is a Reation, a response to what the N wants them to think!

      • Fellow Survivor

        Unforsaken, Pastor Dave coined the term ‘SUPER POWER” which basically means the ability to fool everyone almost all of the time. Apparently he has dealt with his share of these people and spotted this ability early on. They must win and will lie, cheat and steal, whatever it takes to do so. Its so contrary to the second great commandment “Love your neighbor as yourself” that it is unfathomable to even think treating others the way they do is possible. They are flesh based creatures devoid of spirit or conscience.

      • Rox

        Doesn’t it seem like all of us are describing the exact same person, but that N person takes on many different forms? What I can’t figure is how they can all be so much alike. Is there some kind of School for Narcissists that teaches them how to be so hurtful and dismissive that intelligent, rational adults like us are left devastated by their uses and abuses? And, if so, how is it that we didn’t know these ghouls existed? (I grew up in an extremely abusive home, yet I’d never encountered the term “NPD” until my best friend demolished my heart with one email three months ago.) How is something that seems so rampant from all of our similar stories not better known?

  19. Renay

    Fellow survivor,
    I’m so glad your daughter has you in her life. She will understand love and compassion from you and just have to learn to understand her mother’s issues and that they have nothing to do with her. Which she will, and she will be fine. She will see through the Super Power, just like the rest of us who know them best, and trust in the good people in her life.

  20. Renay

    Good point Rox. I’ve never heard of this before. Not as serious anyway. I just started looking up men with attachment disorders because I was trying so hard to understand, then stumbled across all this information that explained him perfectly. I am so grateful I did because at least I know it’s not about me. Even though I obviously still am trying to deal with it. They all sound the same because they are all like the walking dead. No soul, feelings, empathy, love…everything that makes us alive, does not exist in their lives.

  21. Troubled

    Renay…we are fighting the same fight for different reasons. I am new in my town and have just a few friends. He seemed to like to do the same things and I have experienced so many fun new things with him. Maybe that is his thrill, showing us the firsts. Check. Well I have now actually done a bit more than him in the area with other friends,,,,woops. But I feel like he’s trying to prove to me how worthless I am by hanging out with all that he made fun of. Crazy making. One day I’m well and I can say heck with him but then he goes out of his way to torment me. Damn would it be so hard to be the way it was. Friends. If there was a meeting, new sat by us, lunch with us, rec time us. For like 5 minutes and then it all changed. Overnight….thank you. Meeting days are my worst… Do I talk to him, ignore him, mean nice…who am I kidding I just want my old friend back. I do not deserve this …it’s like he’s stabbing a knife in my back…right in front of me.

    • Your old friend doesn’t exist, Troubled. My old friend doesn’t exist either. Now you’ve met the new guy, and you have to work with the new guy. You’ve got to reprogram your thinking: There’s a new guy in the office and he doesn’t like me too much. How do I deal with that? Know that you can’t “win” him unless you have something he needs, but you’ve got to wipe that history clean. It happened but it wasn’t real. That guy is gone. The one you’re seeing now is the real one.

      Yes, it hurts. No, it shouldn’t be that way. But we have to keep telling ourselves: the old friend we thought we loved was a shadow, and it’s gone. The lights came on and exposed the real thing, chasing the shadow away.

      • Fellow Survivor

        Repol, your explanation to Troubled is right on. Troubled, we all want our old wife, friend, spouse back. (See Repol’s response)

        Rox, the School they go to is called “Hell Demon School” google search it, there are articles written about it. This crazy making is not new to us, we are just the new discards. Those that came before us tried to warn us.

        Renay, My daughter is with me this week. We watched ‘How I met your mother episodes” and “Vampire Diaries” I know, I know, both very inappropriate shows, but we get a huge kick out of them. When she first introduced me to these shows, I was like, “these are horrible shows, you can’t watch this” But actually, the character development is very well done. If you ever watch the Vampire Diaries its all about Narcissism.
        She has the protection of the Cross, so she will be fine.

        Rox, one night I accidently stumbled across the diploma my ex n wife earned from the Hell Demon School. She was the Valedictorian. When her dad graduated he also earned the same honors.

  22. Fellow Survivor

    Renay, and all you wonderful friends, for several years my most amazing daughter ( you can tell I am proud of her can’t you) met my ex N wife for bible study once a week. My 15/16 year old at the time was the Leader, the teacher of this one on one meeting. Anyway, my daughter has this thing about writing down bible verses on index cards and posting them all over her room and the refrigerator. One of the main topics of discussion was gossip and slander. Generally speaking, its the mom teaching her daughter the damaging affects of this behavior, not the other way around.

    Anyway, I think the bible verse she was trying to teach should be the “touchstone, benchmark” for this blog and one I think everyone here has followed. So here it is, the rules for this blog site:

    Ephesians 4:29 ” Don’t let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen”

    Ha, can you imagine if all Ns were able to abide by this very simple and reasonable admonition. For 20 years I would remind my ex n to take the log out of her own eye before she tried to remove the spec from her friends eye. BUT SHE WOULD NOT LISTEN.

    • Thank you for that verse, Fellow Survivor. I was trying to remember the reference for it today.
      I posted on the Lying entry, and was having a very hard time this afternoon coping with that and the struggle it causes for us. My oldest (14) came into the room and could tell I had been crying. She wanted to know why. I have been so careful not to be disrespectful to my husband, bur for her sake, I felt I really had to emphasize to her that she can NEVER trust what he says about others, so she can never repeat anything he says or let his words shape her opinions of other people. I showed her the evidence I had of another of his lies toward me which came in today’s mail, and while I fear that I might have been being manipulative with her (she is still a child), she has to learn to think like an adult. I do not want her following in my footsteps and choosing a future partner with the same characteristics. She must break the pattern! I could not bear to see her trapped in a marriage like mine all her life, with abuse, lies, gaslighting, crazy-making, sexual consumption. I don’t want to scare her off marriage entirely, but how to teach appropriate caution? “They” say girls will always seek to marry a man they see their father in. I fear.

      • Fellow Survivor

        Repol, I am way out my out of my leage here because I am just a guy going through a tough time but these kids are smart. When i was still married I can’t tell you how many times I would say to my daughter ” I really love mommy, but don’t treat your husband or boyfriend like mommy treats me. Its not right and is not good for any kind of relationship” When my daughter was 15, not much older than yours, I told her ” I don’t know how much more I can take” meaning the abuse from the mom. My daughter puts her arm around me and says ” I don’t know how you put up with it this long, I am going with you daddy, you raised me”

        Just yesterday, we were talking and I brought up the subject of “parental alienation” meaning the intentional slander of the ex to turn the child’s heart away from the ex. “If I ever come close to that line, stop me, it is not my intention” But, I need to arm you with knowledge to protect your own heart. My job, my number one responsibility is to arm my child with the knowledge and tools needed to protect her own heart from the damage that can be inflicted by the N mom and N granddad

        Abuse is generational and it stops HERE. This nonsense will not go forward into the next generation.

  23. Troubled

    Thank you Repol. I needed a reality check. I only learned what this was days ago. So nice to have someone hold my hand and walk me down the path. It’s hard to comprehend this is an illness, but then being the kind compassionate person, oh it’s an illness he know not what he does. Agh…. I will look up the hell demon school from fellow survivor. Thank you all, I knew it would be a tough day and it was. Why do I care so much? Like a friend says ” we all just want to be loved” I treasure my friendships and want this one back. But I understand I have to sell my soul. Thank you all for the wisdom. Tomorrow, another day and another meeting. Ugh. I pray for strength and kindness. I’m starting to not feel kind towards him. So unlike me!

  24. troubled

    Fellow survivor. My prayers are with you. I am from a family with a very abusive dad to my mom. Mental and physical. It is nothing a child needs to go through. Shield her from the bad. You are doing the right thing. I wish someone had done it for me. No wonder I’m an easy target huh. Be strong.

    • Fellow Survivor

      Troubled, one time in the last 5 years where I was a witness, my ex was unleashing one of her rages on my baby making her feel bad about herself. (Remember, this kid has never made less than an A in school, has never been in any kind of trouble, not even minor trouble, wears her chastity ring proudly, is a quite leader at her school, and is respected by all, students, teachers, coaches, administrators.) There is absolutely no reason she should feel bad about herself for anything.

      So, I interrupt the attack and kindly ask my ex to leave. Of course my baby is in tears. I told her to “put on the Armor of Christ”. Whenever mommy does this she is feeling bad about herself and takes it out on you. Sort of like the kid that comes home from school and kicks the dog.

      I have seen the Ex’s Father’s rage attacks and they are quite frightening. I can’t imagine what it must have been like for a little 6 year old girl, my ex. Classic “how to make a Narcissists” story. To avoid the rage attacks from the dad, don’t do anything or be anything that upsets him. Act the part he has for you in his play and all will be well. Unfortunately for me and my daughter, she assumed and became the character that kept her dad’s rages at bay. And it ain’t pretty.

  25. Troubled

    You know because I came from such disfunction I just strive for normal. That is all. Some call me Naieve. I shelter myself from bad movies, bad things. I don’t need it. RIght now I am being thrust into this drama with someone I thought was a friend. I do not friend just anybody. This person I actually decided, shall I let him be a friend. I do this because I don’t like being hurt. And now not only have I been unfriended but he is trying to make me jealous I think. I want to combat him, let him know there is no reason to make me jealous. I am a friend nothing more, nothing less.
    It is difficutl to wrap mind around the fact that we can’t change them. This is the one illness where the victim is treated. Oh how I wish this would just go away. It destroys my faith in humanity to know there are zombies among us.

    • Rox

      Troubled, I feel your pain, and I’m so sorry that when you finally were ready to open your heart, one of these zombies bit it. The good news (and, yes, there is some good in this) is that it means, by way of a backhanded compliment, that you are an open, positive, empathetic person; these ghouls only harvest from the best. A strong antidote to the loss of faith in humanity is the people with whom we engage on this thread. It’s nice to care and share with others who’ve fought a similar battle, isn’t it? I know it always helps me.

      • Troubled

        Right on! Thank you and today was an ok day because of all I have learned here. It actually is pushing me to be a better me. In trying to be someone that would be a value, someone to be looked to for answers I am making me a better me, meeting new people, more people. In the end he will wish he was my friend. Yes, there is no reason for me to be considered insecure or not worthy. But maybe I was too needy. Well a real friend would stand by me and some are. This has been eye opening. It’s been painful but I am on a different journey. Better. I’m so glad you all helped me have a better day. Thursday are the worst…wish me luck.

      • UnForsaken

        Yes, a person of value and charactor ! In Jane Eyre there is a great quote about how we are meant to Strive and Endure….you know it produces a great end product, we just don’t see it while it’s happening! Competely agree with you, Rox.This place is a great tool in our therapy box. It’s just amazing how many places I’ve seen God teaching me since starting to look for his hand in everything . The negatives need to be acknowledged but not as the answer. When they are the only thing I can see( too many Ns around ), I begin to sink like Peter! God want’s our eyes on Him, His love and his Justice. Troubled , wishing you the best luck in the world!

    • Renay

      Troubled,
      Good luck tomorrow. I can tell in your words you are getting stronger. I too thought I lost faith in people, but this site made me realize there are so many good people out there. It also made me take a look at all of my wonderful friends and appreciate them even more. Fellow Survivor gave that wonderful verse and it made me think, I need to stop caring about what he is doing and build the relationships I do have by showing support. I also have learned a good lesson from him. I feel like I try to make sure when I’m talking to people I take more time to listen and show more compassion. I don’t think he ever genuinely asked how I was, even when I was upset. Especially if he knew he was the one who upset me. It was always, “Sorry you feel that way.” I am more aware of people’s feelings than ever.
      And yes, take their choosing us as a compliment. They look for kind, generous people. My 15 year old son, who like many 15 year old boys, don’t know what to say to an upset women, said, “You should just take it as a compliment. He’s obsessed with appearance, so at least you know you’re cute.” I will stop doubting what I have to offer someone because he chose to discard me. And you should too!

      • Troubled

        To that I say right on! I would have never thought I would be blindsided by such a thing and for just a friend. It is the friendship card that I needed so it is my weakness…I am 3000miles from all I know and love and he knows it. Ugh…that makes me mad … But you are right, I’m getting more enlightened. Today he behaved though so im scared. I don’t like the feeling I get on Thursdays when I am most invisible now. The day we used to do lunch. Agh it’s all so weird, I guess that is how I know I’m right in my diagnosis.

  26. Penny

    OK, everyone: my dear, sweet sister just had a massive stroke and is not expected to live. What does my N say when I relay this news? “I think I am getting sick”. Classic N: in red-flag-backward-reaction-desperate-to-one-up, while I sat in stunned silence, waiting for the “one-up-ance” to be defined. How do you top death? The N could not–but just HAD to try. Unbelievable.

    • DLD

      When my dear Mom was in the ICU and on a ventilator and not expected to live and the physicians told my N-father and I to “talk” about my Mom’s situation, my father’s literally yelled: “What about me? I’M the one who is dying!” Yes, Penny, they are Un-FRICKEN-believable!

    • Penny–I am so sorry. This just happened?

      • Penny

        Yup. Just 2 days ago. I love my sis; she was always like a mom to me. Can’t stop crying–in fact, my N said this to me WHILE I was crying. DLD–you are so right. It is beyond the pale. But it’s true: “they DO have empathy, just not for YOU.” Sigh….

      • DLD

        My prayers are with you during this difficult time, Penny. (((Hugs)))

    • DLD

      My sincere condolences about your sister, Penny. (((Hugs)))

    • Rox

      Penny, I’ll keep you, your sister, and your family in thoughts and prayers. Just know that you are loved and supported in all of this.

    • Troubled

      This is why we support eachother, pray for eachother and offer wisdom. I’m light on N wisdom but heavy in love and caring. I am sorry to hear the news…be strong and I will pray for your strength and wisdom during this time. I recently lost my dad And for me they’re was just nothing better than hugs, even from strangers. Here is a hug for you. Take care.

      • Fellow Survivor

        Penny, I can’t imagine. I am sorry for the insensitivity of your husband. I hope your sister is doing better. I really have no words because although I am empathetic, I have no base line of past experiences to really comprehend what you are going though. Be strong my friend.

  27. Oh, Penny. . . My heart is with you.
    What a terrible, cold thing for him to say at a time like that. I’m so very sorry. Praying for you. I hope you have people you can grieve with openly, sincerely.

    • E

      Penny, I am so sorry about your sister. You are in my prayers!

      • UnForsaken

        Penny, was actually praying for Y’all two nights ago….and will continue! You sound as close as my sister and I ……cannot imagine the cruelty of grief under those conditions, but have been near it and Know you will over-come.Be strong in the Lord. Much love and a hug from me!

  28. Renay

    Penny,
    My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  29. Troubled

    I do have to say that Penny’s story of how the N always one ups you no matter what has really helped me realize how many N’s surround me. As I read all the responses I feel like crying there is just slouch wonderful people here. After 4 months of darkness you all are a shining light. Penny harness that love…it is what will bring you peace. More hugs!!!

  30. Fellow Survivor

    I would just like to say, for anyone who is reading this blog and these post, please jump in here. Tell us your story. whatever it is, we are all hurting, so join us in sharing your experience. You would be surprised on how similar your story is to ours, but with a twist. All of our stories are completely different but also just the same.

    • Fellow Survivor

      OK gals, this is the reference to the Hell Demon School by the Great Anna Valerious, the writer author of the “Narcissists Suck Blog”

      This post is a kind of tough read for some, but all of her writing speaks truth to me. The last paragraphs reference the “Hell Demon School” as mentioned in a prior post.

      In my darkest hours past, I could only read the Bible, Anna’s posts, and Graceformyheart post. For those that want to learn about this disorder and how to deal with it. read on:
      http://narcissists-suck.blogspot.com/2007/03/hell-demon-school.html

  31. Penny

    wow–thank you all so much for your kindness & empathy..like a cup of cool water and a blanket, w/o even asking. I will prob not post much for a while, but will read & agree with so much said here. wow. what a community we have here, so grateful for you all. Oh–I do want to say that I am blessed with a great husband; the N I mentioned was not him. There are several in my life, so let’s just leave it at that. (note: Anna Valerious cautions us to be aware that Ns sometimes try to find us to see what we’re saying, so I am purposely being vague here.) and yes, FellowSurvivor, I too have read ONLY my Bible, this post and Anna V. So blessed to have found a balm in Gilead, a calm in the storm, a safe place, a reality check, kindred spirits, truth seekers, encouragers: bless you all. Thank you for your prayers, and I too pray for you.

    • Troubled

      Yes being found is a concern. I need help so bad that I feel it is worth the risk. Because of this page I can sleep at night without replaying everything in my mind and wondering how I messed up and no longer feel like the most worthless person on earth. The first time I read an N description I knew what I was up against. So I question my diagnosis and I still wonder why me but honestly I could not live without this support. I am shocked at how this hit me but it did. Penny maybe you will need an alias. Because if you are like me this is power!

  32. Troubled

    So please help me all. Today I was not invisible. I have been invisible for 4 mos. Why? Why today? Of course I was Leary and cautious of my words. Remember I can’t get this N out of my life. I feel like I’m being tricked. Do I be nice or no? He’s switching jobs…for a normal friend I would give a small gift? I don’t know what to do except be me. But part of me feels, he needs to come to me and apologize…only wait I’m invisible and he’s an N which means all normal rules are out the window. I want to treat him normal with the hope that normal will follow.

    • Troubled,
      I would say to treat him normal, but WITHOUT the hope that normal will follow.
      I’ve done that too, but not recently, with my friend. Had to say to myself, and pray for God to help me accept it, “I am going to do this thing for him because it is what a real friend would do (travel to his graduation; fill out a job referral; send a birthday card, etc.) BUT I have to be prepared and recognize that it is going to mean NOTHING to him and it will do nothing for advancing the relationship either.” And yet, if I am a friend, I wouldn’t refuse and play a sniper’s game back, right?
      I think, in some way, that is how we can be loving and still protected, even when we’ve been hurt. Maybe even think of it as a parting gift. Does the new job move him out of your company? Or is it an in-office move where you will still see him? If it takes him to a different place, I would do something very small–a card, a pen, very few words that state a simple congratulations–and call that “done.” If it’s in the same company, I think maybe just a note that says “congratulations” is all. Don’t grovel. Don’t lavish anything fancy. Just don’t be set apart from the crowd by being the one who wouldn’t participate in being civilized. He could twist that against you if he wanted, and, like you said before, you want to be normal. We just have to bring the expectation into reality–he isn’t likely to respond with normal back.
      I prayed for you this morning. And you too, Penny. I wonder how things are with your sister.

      • Rox

        Troubled and Repol, That’s where I get stuck, too. I resent that I have to think and rethink how I will change my behavior to “get along” with my N, without falling into my old pattern of thinking of us as friends, the way we were before. I’ve decided that I’ll be cautious, but I’m not going to let his petty selfishness and inhumanity dictate my behavior. Easier said than done, may I add, as I catch myself sometimes emailing him with a quick thought, just as we used to in the past. The real test is dealing with other people who think he’s a real human being and interpret our split as “he has feelings for you and is afraid of having an intimate relationship with you.”. Yeah, right. The only thing that scares him is that I know the truth, and he wonders whom I might tell, as best friends of 20 years share many mutual friends. Don’t you sometimes feel like the victim of a horrific car crash who was minding her/his own business when the crazed lunatic N jumped the curb and altered your life forever?

  33. Renay

    Troubled,
    Please have NO expectations. Even if he treats you the way he used to, it won’t be for long. Remember everything they do is to fulfill their needs. He will never consider your feelings, only his. I would not recommend getting any gift. Just be polite and never consider him a friend.

  34. Troubled

    Renay, Rox, Repol. Thank You. First you guys rock. Yes imagine this…I am invisible again. Hmph. You know what, if he wants to be my friend he can figure out how to make it happen. Yes that is the strong me at the moment. Earlier I was crying. Why do I let my soul be crushed. It’s the only me thing that kills me. I dilude myself into thinking somehow that makes me special. You know like a boy in school who has a crush on you so they treat you awful. SO yes it shoots bullet holes in the idea that you could ever be friends with someone of the opposite sex. Only wait he friends with everyone here…but me it seems. The sad part is, those popular people he wishes to impress, I got word the other day they are backstabing him, they think he’s awful full of himself. HAHA,,,they have no idea and they won’t learn it from me. Repol I came to a conclusion because you know you are right…it won’t matter, I need to be done. No being my normal kind self, why should I. No gifts, no thoughtful…polite and not a friend. Thank You Renay for that. Yes I must detach and discard. It is a very unnatural thing. What is hardest is no one understands. My girlfriend is like what is “really” up with you two. Not a thing. I had a friend now I don’t…Overnight, that is what is up. It was instantanious and really without cause. Ugh. And Rox…I think I was in the car with you when the crazed lunatic hit!! You guys are my lifeline. Sorry this one was all about me. You know I pray for you all and anyone in this world that has to feel this pain.

  35. Renay

    Don’t apologize. It’s hard to remove yourself from the situation because all you want to do is make sense of it. I have not seen him in 2 months and still come here and read other articles every day! I think he’s engaged again and have to force myself to not obsess over it. Two months ago we were planning, a party for my son’s birthday, going out of town for new years, travel plans for next summer he had all planed out, and of course the future. He led me to believe he would be in my life forever and as soon as I asked him about his lies I was discarded. I truly believe I was brainwashed because the pain that continues can’t be normal.
    I think of you guys through out the day and it forces me to take my own advice. Kind of like coming clean to my friends. I knew as soon as I told everyone I’d be too embarrassed to let him back in my life if he tried. I think he will try someday, not because he cares of course, but because he thinks I’m weak and was great supply. I was such good supply I’m horrified. How could be so dumb?!
    Stay strong!

    • Troubled

      Ok,off to face the day. It is Sunday let’s make it a great one. Because of all this drama I have let areas of my life be neglected. So much is wrong because of this so called friend. I had no idea I was so fragile, I guess that is what is so alarming, well that and my fear of how else I could be blindsided. I am proceeding by putting myself out there, being friends with all those he has discarded me for. Every time he turns around there I am smiling and talking to one of the people he had said bad things about to me and then turned around and lavished attention on while making me invisible. I feel like it’s an evil game but I have to fight fire with fire. The truth is everyone likes me. I’m just not a top producer, oh and I did call the n out on his judgementalness. So like I said earlier, he is now glaring at me and has spoken to me a couple times. Something I am doing is working. I think I’m confusing him and of course it’s like not playing fair with a 7 year old. But non the less it is crippling to me that I have to play this game while I watch him follow his idol around like a puppy and I have to wonder if he truly is an n then he is plotting her demise or does he really want to be near the office super star. I could try to become the office super star? So twisted, could push me to a higher self but there is only one office star and I am the only one (that I’m aware of) that got left in the rubble, why? So next week my goal will be helping you all see through the madness for me it was hell week this week and I’ve been a bit needy. I will now go reclaim my life for the day…n free.

  36. Fellow Survivor

    Girls, I empathize with you all. I had a horrible dreadful experience tonight. My daughter was playing her last volley ball game of the season tonight, (she never plays, so if I am not there I am not missing her playing). Anyway, I greet several of the other parents while we are walking in and stop at the door into the gym. Who was sitting in the bleachers? Not my ex N. Worse. Her dreaded best friend divorce lawyer. I couldn’t go in. I just couldn’t. One of the other dad’s was holding the door open for me but I just froze. That lady, who was my friend for over 10 years ripped me to shreds in divorce mediation when they both knew I was emotionally crippled. Its just evil. There is no other word to describe it. I was the coach of our daughters basketball, soccer, and softball teams since our daughters were 5 years old. I was the leader of our daughter’s princess group since our daughters were 5 years old. The only reason my ex and that woman know each other is because of me. And they treated me like that. To really let it all out, this is what pisses me off so much about this hole affair. My ex N couldn’t write a coherent college paper when I met her. I taught her how. She couldn’t get into any social groups without me. I introduced her and WROTE the letter of introduction. She was a NOBODY. She used my name and social connections to climb the social ladder, and as you ROX so eloquently described, became like a snake and chocked all of the life and drive out of my very soul, ever so slowly.

    I feel so utterly beaten down. I called one of my best friends since 3rd grade and he told me I needed to grow a spine again and if need be he would apply shock treatment to my manly parts to regrow those parts as well.. A very good friend by the way, called me every day for 3 months to check on me. He is right by the way. I do need to regrow my spine but I am not so sure about the shock treatment thing.

    Anyway, Daughter is cool. No explanation needed. She sees who is in the stands and on the bleachers. Thanks for listening ladies. I think you are all super cool. WE all have to get our COOL back.

    • Troubled

      HAHAHAAH. You are funny….ok or your old friend is. Yes this all sounds like rubbish to our friends because it makes no sense. I can’t talk to them,or my husband…no one gets that I was written out, a vampire swooped in and sucked the happiness out of me and turned my friend into a zombie. You guys get the speak. I have to brace up for meeting days. Sometimes I bail halfway through. We all do what we can. Thankfully your daughter is on your side. Right now My frame of mind is so crappy I’m afraid I’m driving family away. I’m depressed. It makes no sense.i honestly don’t even feel justified in my pain. He was not my husband…so let’s say you have 1st degree trauma…mine is like 3rd…but feels like 1st because I have to face the discarded everyday. All the other popular crowd, their in. Ugh. I don’t want to be popular. So because I’m in so much pain I digress when I’m trying to help you. In hearing your story you are on the right path. Not your chosen or planned path…it’s new and exciting. You seem wonderful and I’m sure it’s too soon to think of other women but I am certain that any man that can share his feelings like this is a catch 🙂

      • Fellow Survivor

        Troubled, I am a rare species, the empathetic sensitive male. My mother is an empath, I am an empath, and my daughter is an empath. It is a gift but also a burden when with the wrong people, especially an N that wants you to feel their pain when they project onto you. My poor mother, she feels my pain and it breaks my heart.

        I have to make a choice, “who am I ?” For 23 years ” I was” my ex’s willing servant, willing to do anything to try and make her happy. When I began to sense that I was no longer a servant but a slave, that is when I began to rebel and stand up for myself. Here is a good example. As a gift from a loving husband I would bring my ex coffee in bed every morning. Swing back through while she was getting ready and warm it up. When I started questioning the lies I wouldn’t feel like bringing her coffee or make her breakfast. Not doing those things was considered cruel and mean by her.. My daughter, well, I will do anything for her.

        So now, in two years the daughter will be out of the house at college. She wants to go to Yale. YIKES. I no longer can define myself as my ex’s loving husband. So “who am I ?”

        The answer is, ” I am a believer” Being a believer has always been the core of my personality. Now the question is how do I reconcile what I have been through with my sinful nature and being a Believer. This is my personal struggle and one I will have to sort through ( I prefer the term “believer” because churches are full of christians but how many are true believers)

        I have been angry with God because of these trials and tribulations but somehow the message I get back is ” I am doing you a favor, that girl has problems” I mean really, what kind of normal person can just write off the most significant human being in their lives for 90% of their adult lives, “just like that”

        On a separate note, when the ex and I were still dating we had gone skiing at Lake Tahoe, CA. It is a Casino town. When we drove through the town I got this Erie creepy feeling like there was evil present or something. I still remember that feeling. Whenever I even see or here the names of the ex or the best friend lawyer, I get the same feeling, but worse, much worse.
        Its just so very very weird.

      • E

        Fellow Survivor,
        I meant to tell you earlier that I wish my father could be more like you! I’m realizing the reason he is NOT like you is because he successfully erased himself in deference to my mother. She is his identity. You have escaped this and you found your identity in Christ. Your daughter knows the real you. To this day I can only tell you facts about my dad. He is an emotional enigma. He is literally a shell of a human. I can also count on one hand the number of chuldhood stories he has told me. His history is vague and leaves more to the imagination, while my mother is allowed to tell all his stories for him. You didn’t let this happen to yourself. I say well done, you have emerged injured, but intact and healing. My father accepts his treatment because he thinks to have suffered is love. I say it is not!

  37. Renay

    Fellow survivor,
    I’m so sorry for your pain. I think all of our friends are coming from the same place of not understanding. The good thing is they are true friends and will still love us 5 years from now. Unlike the monsters in our lives who rarely have lasting relationships or friendships because most people figure it out eventually. Can you imagine walking around knowing how many people hate you? That’s what makes us different. We would care, they don’t. They think we are weak because we feel.
    I think our friends don’t understand because we were brainwashed into thinking these people were perfect. When we finally admit to ourselves what they really are,our brain can’t comprehend. If you think about it most people irritate you in some way or many ways. That’s what makes them a normal human, they’re not perfect. The monsters brainwash us into thinking they’re perfect. And even when the red flags start appearing we tell ourselves it must be a mistake because they’re perfect right?! It’s so hard to watch them interact with others because we know the lies that are flying out of their mouths and people will believe it. That is until they get burned too. Friends can’t understand the pain because they are good people and saw the red flags long before we did and know we are better off without them. Which we are. We are all reasonable, intelligent, loving people so I can’t for the life of me understand why we still feel this way. Anyone like you who was married to them and have kids, I can’t imagine your pain. But I promise it’s not about having a spine. You’ll get there when you’re ready and healed.

  38. Fellow Survivor

    E, childhood stories. I have many. I have told my baby girl most of them, but not all, just yet. In 6th grade the children wrote a story about their dad’s. My daughter’s began with ” when my daddy was young, he was a wild child” I have mentioned before that she is a trouble free kid. I even told her before, do something bad, jokingly of course. She told me “Dad, you did enough for two generations” I was a 70s generation teenager. Things were different back then. I can’t tell you how many times she would say ” tell me another story” Daughters always want to hear the “first kiss” story.

    Renay, as far as friends go, I have had the same friends for 40 years with many new ones along the way. Had my 35th high school reunion last week. Saw people I haven’t seen in 10 -20 years. Just like yesterday. I still love them and they still love me.

    Now with my ex, here is a story for you. 5 years ago I had a business trip to Nevada. The Maid of Honor at our wedding, the ex’s best friend at the time, she is smokin hot by the way, lives in the city. I had lunch with her, got her business card and gave it to the ex. That very nice lady called 3 times and the ex never called her back. I thought that was very strange back then but now I understand. Ns never want to be connected to the past because they are only looking to the future.

    The hardest part for me ladies is that two years ago, we went to the Rose Bowl and Parade, Vegas, Skiing in Colorado and the California Wine Country. Those memories and experiences aren’t long ago but very real and current. Less than 2 years ago I was taking her into surgery, taking her to rehab, and on and on and on. They remember none of it. We remember all of it, and they remember none of it. I don’t understand, I can’t understand, I will never understand

  39. Troubled

    Renay and fellow survivor thank you for your input. This morning I read he stories and I am speechless and find I have tear in my eye. I am a believer, and I’m just learning about empaths…not sure yet if I am one…I know I hurt easily. And I care deeply. My sore spot is people ignoring me. I feel so bad I actually told a girl that at a meeting yesterday, she interrupted me to speak to another. I was hurt and walked away. Why would I do that ? I know… Because the N in my life has devalued and discarded me so far, fast and hard that I can’t take one more straw on my back. I’m worried my insecurity will drive all away. I was not insecure before…he made me that. I spent years working my way out of shyness…I am strong. But he makes me feel worthless. Why? I have not sold my soul to him, he has no vested interest in my life. Yet I’m broken.my kids say one wrong word,,,give me the teenager evil eye…I’m out. I leave. My husband…I can’t even go there he is going through his own hell and is not I don’t even know..he’s just an angry man right now….I married a charismatic funny man…this guys angry. I suppose that is why I enjoyed N. As I go down my list of people in my life …who can I talk to, each and everyone has these monumental problems and no one would get the n thing. So yesterday I got to watch him walk around and charm everyone as normal and when I walked up to his group at one point he just glares at me. As apposed to the invisible me that normally he can’t see. I hate feeling worthless in his presence I just want to say something…I can’t…shyness and insecurity are firmly in place. I feel nothing I have to say matters. To him it doesn’t of course gveryone else will gladly stand and talk…I don’t care? I know weird..so I’m obsessed..I need to resolve this before I can move on. Haha…so I scroll back to see what you guys have said and see that I am a broken record. I need to figure out how to print these words of wisdom out and carry with me. You said it all on nov 1st. You have great advise. It’s just so incomprehensible that this happened to me. When I learned he was the issue I could finally sleep, now I’m back to no sleep, there must be something I can say. I question my diagnosis of him. I want to own it…no I’m just weird that s why he avoids me. But hmm, it took him a year and a half to figure that out?? The only thing in my life not going right is I’m trying to start a biz…I’m not raking in money right now…I’m not top sales person. What’s hard is not everyone he lavishes attention on is. Ugh , it’s so weird. So the base is I can’t handle being tossed aside and it’s crippling me. Renay says don’t apologize…well…you are my sounding board. I will go for NCAA next week…this week I had to face him daily, not so for next..thank The Lord.

  40. Been off for a few days. Lots of emotional stuff going on here. I see I’m not the only one.

    Troubled, sorry about your hell week. I hear you. It’s hard.

    Fellow Survivor, I so understand the paralysis from the social anxiety of unexpectedly seeing someone so responsible for hurting you. I think your friend is great, but advice like that, even when coming from someone who loves you, takes time to implement. It is our goal, though. But it does take time. And the shock didn’t help. I’m wondering, myself, about an event coming up in a little over a month. I want to go because it is honoring someone very dear to me. But I know there is a very high likelihood that a few people who deeply contributed to hurting me when I had great need will be there. Probably not quite as directed as your situation, but still, I could see myself freezing in fear and panic. Maybe I will just drop in, early (they tend to always be late) and slip out before they arrive. I’m a coward. I know. But that’s just part of the package now.

    I wonder how Penny is, and her sister. Would love to hear from her.

    Get this, people: I’m away for a few days and guess what: I missed you all.

    • Fellow Survivor

      Repol, Renay is right. You are not a coward, just smart for wanting to be out of the presents of those that have harmed us. Who wants to get hit in the head with a shovel? I know I don’t. I know this may sound harsh but I stand by it. What those two ladies did to me was evil. They used my love of and for my daughter to gain financial advantage over me One time my ex told me ” you’ll never leave daughter”. Translation: ” I can do whatever I wan’t and you will never divorce me” Well, I didn’t divorce her, I just withdrew ALL affection and support thinking that would make her “wake up” I wasn’t going to tell her she was great and beautiful and awesome when she kept treating me the way she did. I had no idea what N supply was at the time, but I always told my ex she was great and beautiful and awesome. I thought I was just being honest not knowing those words were her life blood

      I still don’t understand and never will how they completely ignore, forget all the great times and all that we have done for them to support them. I have read the literature about all the reasons why Ns act this way, but my brain and my heart will always be dumbfounded about how anyone can behave this way.

  41. Renay

    Don’t ever call yourself a coward! People who hurt others for the sport of it are the cowards! Talk to us before the event, we’ll get you through it. 🙂
    Troubled, I think we are on opposite days concerning our feelings. A few days ago I felt like I could cry, today I feel sorry for him. What a pathetic lonely life. He has nothing but a trail of BS and shattered lives. I have friends and family that are amazing. You say you revert to old feelings of shyness, that’s a big part of their game, getting us to feel insecure. It’s called “crazy making” in the N world. And boy it’s true. Fellow survivor made a good point of how they dont remember. There were times I would bring up things we did and he would look at me almost confused. He can’t feel my pain because he wasn’t there for most of it. He was there physically, that’s it.
    Its funny because my kids just asked me tonight what he would do if he saw us. I told them he would probably ignore us because we never meant anything to him and he has no clue what he meant to us because he can’t. That sounds harsh but they’re teenagers and have been through a lot worse so I am honest with them.
    Don’t feel like you’re repeating yourself. That’s what has helped me get a grip (well sometimes). I have to repeat many things to myself to try and understand. I will never understand, none of us will. If you’re like me, I’m an answer person, so it’s hard to accept I’ll never get my answer.
    Have a good week.

    • Troubled

      Well that sums it up. Yes the N I know is real funny if you bring up a past event he’s like oh that was you, I thought it was someone else or “I said that?”..like he has no recollection. The only thing that keeps me sane and able to go to work is hearing you all

      Repol, I’m with you I guess you guys are my supply. Weird huh. Every time one of your N’s mirrors this n it just boosts my confidence that I am not crazy.

      It all hurts and I’m sure I’m obsessing too much. I just want to beat him at his own game.

      Take care.

    • Troubled

      And yes I need answers and an apology

      • Fellow Survivor

        Troubled, don’t hold your breath waiting for an apology. It ain’t going to happen Before a person can offer a sincere apology they must first admit a mistake. To admit they made a mistake would be to acknowledge that they are not perfect. That’s not possible.

      • Rox

        Fellow Survivor, I think you’ve very adeptly captured here why we N survivors continue to go round and round in our heads and our hearts trying to make sense of the senseless; we’re expecting (understandably) a human being to possess human feelings, when our Ns are scared to death of anything and everything that makes people human. Our world is flesh and blood, and their world is tin. Flesh is warm, adaptable, repairable. Their metal world is sharp, cold, and ruined with the slightest dent. We have what they never can, and as much as they express contempt for us and our “pesky little feelings,” they envy us our non-robotic souls. (p.s. This insight comes courtesy of my N, who had one brief moment of flesh-and-blood recognition before he could no longer handle it and had to turn back into the tin man, the only identity he has.)

  42. Troubled

    Fellow survivor, Rox,Renay, repol, new to the thread e and missing penny; What a group we may get an award for most comments. We probably have fallen off the boasting thread but I can say I have learned so much from you all. So here in the middle of the night when I used to lose sleep wondering what on earth I did to deserve this treatment now I just can’t wait to hear your words. It gives me strength. I struggle most with why me, and I secretly wonder who will fall next. In actuality someone left our company and I have to wonder if he wasn’t road kill, so to speak. I don’t want to leave, it would not do my family or my career good. I need to perservere, but I need to do it on my terms, so I’m focusing on beating the n at his own game. I may write my own book on that…stay tuned:-) ..hahaha….obviously prayers are with me and strong is shining through.

  43. Fellow Survivor

    Rox, if you go back and read the Post “Turning Off Love” Dave expounds on the “Tin” hearts of the Ns. He actually refers to their hearts as Stainless Steel. When two pieces of wood are glued together and they are torn apart both pieces suffer damage from the ripping apart. However, if a piece of wood is glued to a piece of Stainless Steel, only the wood is damaged, the stainless steel is as smooth as the day before they were stuck together. The post was several months back but it was a good one.

    • Rox

      Thanks, Fellow Survivor, I’ll look for Dave’s post. This is going to be a painful week at work. My N has planned a conference — which I taught him how to do — that is going to make him the star of the week. We used to do our events together, talking about all of our fears and concerns. Now, he’s TOO IMPORTANT to chat about this stuff with his dear former friend. I hate to say how sick and sad I am today. It’s like watching your closest friend murder you and you can’t stop it. Today, I’m the one who needs everyone’s help.

      • Fellow Survivor

        Rox, so you taught him how to run conferences and now he acts like you had nothing to do with it I bet. I guess that’s part of the “sucking” process that they employee on their victims. You had something he needed. You helped him. You weren’t looking for a big thank you thank you thank you because its a gift to do nice things for people and help them. Now that he has what he wanted from you. Toodalou, Audios, see you later.

        As mentioned previously, my ex didn’t know how to write a paper when we met. I taught her. Couldn’t get into any social clubs because she didn’t know anybody. Yep, I got her into those as well. My family and friends wrote the recommendation letters for her years ago. She never would have dreamed of going to black tie dances and parties before she met me. But yep, I was connected to that scene. Has the job she has because of my family. Does any of that matter to her. No.

        In the last years of our marriage I would tell her ” you’ve road this old horse about as far as it can go, so now you are going to find a fresh new horse” I really told her that. Another good metaphor I would use, and still do is ” you see that shoe mark on the top of this old bald head, yep that’s ex’s shoe mark. She climbed on top of my head to get as high up the social ladder as she could get and once she figured out that’s as high is its going to go, she jumped to the next boat that could take her higher up the ladder” Quite pathetic really.

      • Rox

        That’s it exactly, Fellow Survivor. I taught my N best friend of 20 years how to write and edit his books and articles and how to plan and stage conferences. Now that the work we did on our last conference together has netted him a golden job on campus, he has discarded me “because we’re in different places in our lives,” as he said. Of course we’re in different places,” I responded, “because I’d never stoop so low as to put a dear friend’s neck under my boot to elevate me to a higher position. How our opportunistic Ns sleep at night is beyond me.

  44. Fellow Survivor

    One other thing ladies. Today would have been my 24th wedding anniversary. I really wanted to make the marriage last for life so its kind of a bummer. Its been over 13 months since I was last intimate with my Ex, 6 months since the divorce was final. Why do I still care?
    I guess 27 years of love and commitment aren’t easy to just “blow off” as if nothing happened or those was no meaning to it all. I mean, every memory, every event, the last 27 years of my life, the Ex N was part of it. Birthdays, vacations, birth of child, sicknesses, she is all part of it. Its just weird.

  45. Troubled

    I’m struggling blowing off a year plus friendship. Mainly because it is rubbed in my face daily that I was not a good enough supply I guess. So for you it is most certainly having to relearn everything. You sound like a wonderful, caring person but I know the no matter how much you know this it does not lessen your pain. Today celebrate the wonderful thing you got out of your 27 years, your daughter…She is your reward. I know you can get lost in the pain but the joy is with you and your daughter. We are all learning these Reptiles are among us. I had missed that small thread earlier but you and Rox nailed it. Dead on. Don’t forget it. Rejoice that you get a new lease on life. Where a door closes and window opens. I know it is cliche but it is true. Have an awesome day.

  46. Renay

    Sorry about the date fellow survivor. I have no words. You have spent your adult life with someone who has no feelings. After my husband died I went through many stages: shock, poor me, severe anger, and so on. One of the things that got me through was knowing I had no regrets and nothing but wonderful memories. I knew how lucky I was and grateful for every moment. We were married for 16 years. I met the monster 2 years after he died and knew him for 1 year. The strangest part is I understand my grief for my husband. He was the greatest guy I’ve ever known. Knowing that, why on earth would I grieve for this monster? If I am this confused, I can’t imagine where you stand. I say look forward to a future with your daughter and enjoy life. Maybe you’ll meet someone else. But be grateful you are no longer at the mercy of a manipulating snake.

  47. Renay

    Troubled,
    I just remembered a few months back the guy he worked with the most, his “right hand man” quit suddenly. I wondered if it had anything to do with him. I’ve read they can be ruthless in the workplace, something you know a lot about, and he always complained about everyone he worked with being stupid or incapable of doing things right. This was a good job, not something most people would just quit.
    Anyway thought of you guys today while driving to work and laughed. Last night I said how strong i felt and this morning while driving to work I thought maybe I should reach out and try to forgive him. Why can’t I take my own advice?! I envisioned all of you lining up to slap me! Dear lord, what is wrong with me?!

  48. Troubled

    Hahahahaha. Yes I need to have that vision. I spoke with N today. I had visions of this heartfelt conversation but chickened out and made small talk. I’m not invisible when we are one on one. So I gained nothing because next time we are in a group I know how it will be who he will charm and how I will be shunned. I want to scream…those people that you have overthrown me for, they are backstabbers. They talk about you!!!! It’s so petty, I am an adult I don’t care about popularity. He does! So as I read my post to you I guess today was experiment time. I think I’m trying to prove to him he is wrong about me. Don’t judge, I think it’s a survival instinct. I was very conscious of just looking at him like he was king???I’m sure he loved that. Following pastor Dave’s advise, it was not the time to apologize for anything. You are probable on to something for your N’s workplace, sounds like road kill to me. I cannot let that happen. I wish to tame this N so I can share the knowledge. It will be hard, he is highly trained…besides being an N his past job required extreme mental toughness. Well my whole childhood required it! Maybe it is why I’m obsessed…you cannot give me your friendship and then willy hilly take it away…that is not how we play in my sandbox!

    • Rox

      Troubled, I think you and I are in exactly the same situation. I, too, saw my N yesterday at work, but it was through a glass wall, like at the zoo. (Our conference rooms are glass enclosed, and I was at a meeting when he walked by.) He is the only person in that building, I’ve noticed, who never looks into the glass room to wave to colleagues. Then, I had to hear how endlessly great he is, even by those who’ve personally told me that they hate him. I was sick and sad after that because we were the best of friends for 20 years. I loved this man as a brother and a friend, and yet, he dumped me when I mentioned how unhappy he seemed and that I would be there to help. I agree with your shock, Troubled; who drops a close friend who offers to help? The problem is that my presence now reminds him of how unhappy he is — as if I caused his unhappiness — and he can never let the world know that he is anything but a high achiever. Essentially, he chose a hurtful lie over truth with a friend who loved him without fail, and this friend hurts every day, as if her friend just keeps killing her again and again. Right now, I’m in more pain than I ever thought possible …and all because I cared for the wrong person.

      • Troubled

        Yes office N has no peripheral vision, does not turn his head to look side to side to see who is around the corner…weird. I could walk right by and unless I speak there would be no contact. The similarities are scary. And yes all for a mispoken word. The more I read, the more I know it is so, but still why me continues. If we could only find the right words. No matter how much we know it is them…it hurts. I know. Be strong.

  49. Troubled

    I have started reading Pastor Dave’s blog on Grace 101. Until now I have only read about narcissism. In two weeks time I have learned more than I ever wanted to actually know about the subject. However knowledge is power and so with your strength and support I move forward. And now I will try to do it with grace. I am most certain that some of my posts have been anything but graceful and I am sorry. I like many of you have been blindsided, often I cry not so much for this person or this friendship but for the turns my life have taken that would make me so vulnerable. It’s frustration and lack of control.

    • Renay

      Troubled, I get it, I really do. There’s no reason for me to see my monster and if I had to see him daily it would be a game changer. The best thing for me is that he’s moved on to other supply and I no longer exist. Just BE CAREFUL. We can’t beat them because we can love. The pain we feel they will never feel, that’s why they seem to have an easy time. I support you, just am afraid you are the only one to be hurt. Let me know if you need help with anything.

      • Troubled

        Yes you can help…just keep beating it into my head. I should start a count of how many days since the day I learned the truth about our fake friendship. So just keep beating me over the head with it. They are heartless, they can’t help it that I am invisible now, they are also fragile though they want you to think they are strong. They are hangers on but yet they want you to hang on them. Hmm its bizarre. It makes me want to be great just so we can be friends and yet I feel like all of a sudden I am repulsed and at the same time scared of such a creature. Tell me this is just [art of the process. I basically need to get back to my life and making new friends. What is it about these people…I wish I had that kind of power over others to make them think Im great no matter what I do. Ugh and he knows it. Who told me one time no matter what he does they still adore him. Huh.

  50. Really tired of hurting.
    Why can’t I turn off the empathy that makes me draw so close so easily? Such a dangerous place to be.
    I can’t stop caring. I still struggle with wanting to set things right.

    • Troubled

      You and me both. Just remember, you have got this. This person they are an N, remember. Incapable of feeling. It is an act. They will treat others wonderfully and only you know its an act and its a matter of time before another source of supply falls. You know this. You have given me some of the best advise. Dont Grovel. Here is what we do, we smile and act unaffected if we have to cross their path. Cool and detached. Hell seek them out if you must. Then walk away. Remember you got this. This is an alternate world where vampires and zombies walk among us. Your part in the play was written out. Im sorry you don’t want to hear that but , Well. You know. Be strong. You control this now.

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