The Pooooor Narcissist

 

It’s Narcissist Friday!     

 

N – Get off the road, stupid idiot! That guy drives just like your brother!

 

You – Why do you say such mean things? It isn’t like you are a perfect driver.

 

N – What complaint do you have with my driving? You are always criticizing me. I have to be perfect before I can say anything anymore.

 

Then, when you get home:

 

N – Well, you can breathe now. I didn’t say anything mean and we got home without an accident. If you still think you can handle such a mean person, you should probably drive tonight when we go out. That way you can feel safe. Maybe I can sit back and criticize your driving.

 

Ever notice how the narcissist can become the instant victim? I used to have a relative who could say anything, accuse of anything, or criticize anything. But if you dared to challenge, you would become the aggressor and she would be the victim.

Some people have trouble seeing the truth about the narcissist when the narcissist presents as a victim. It’s a popular way for the narcissist to deceive others. It covers their own cruelty, changes the focus from them and their behavior to you. Because they have no trouble lying, narcissists can quickly shift to acting hurt and abused, no matter what they have just done to you.

Also, the victim gets a lot of attention, sympathy. Of course the narcissist wants that attention. Perhaps you have seen a child fall down, then look to see if anyone was watching. If no one was watching, the child might just keep playing. If someone saw, however, the crying starts. We understand from early ages that those who are hurt can get attention.

Some narcissists are professional victims. Nothing ever goes right for them. No one is ever nice enough or helpful enough. Always in financial trouble. Always having health problems. Always fighting a losing battle with someone. Even those who get used by the victim narcissist still feel sorry for them in some way.

You see, it works. Most of us were taught to care for others. We have empathy. We see the pain of others and believe it and want to help. So we let ourselves be used. And we excuse the users.

I read once of a real serial killer who would get crutches and carry groceries to his car parked far on the edge of the parking lot. He looked so pitiful that people would offer to help him. When it was some young lady who offered to carry his groceries, he would let her help him all the way to the car, then club her to unconsciousness using the crutch.

Maybe your narcissist wasn’t that terrible, but most of us can understand the story. One of the narcissists I had to deal with became the victim the moment I suggested that I didn’t need his help. Now you know how “helpful” a narcissist can be. He wanted an opportunity to look good at my expense. When I didn’t allow that, he turned on me and became my enemy, all while presenting himself as the victim to others.

The narcissist spouse is always the victim in the divorce. The narcissist boss is always the victim when charged with some workplace cruelty. The narcissist mother is always the victim when confronted with her own actions. The narcissist church leader is always the victim when the people begin to say no. It’s one of the more effective tools in the narcissist’s toolbox.

In the meantime, the real victims are often ignored. The pooooor narcissist cries so loudly that everyone must pay attention. The real victim is holding in the fear and pain, often too confused to explain what has been happening.

How do you win against the pooooor narcissist? Sometimes you don’t. Sometimes you just have to go on to protect yourself and let others find out the truth for themselves. Narcissists usually win at their games because they know how to manipulate others and are ruthless in doing so. Very few of us can play at their level. Maybe the best you can do is say it out loud, “Pooooor so-and-so!” Hearing it that way seems to help your mind understand what your heart already knows. Just be careful who hears you.

Sadly, we all have to learn to ask more questions and be a little more skeptical, especially when we first hear the story of a victim. Remember that there are two or more sides in any conflict. Sometimes the one who cries the loudest is the one who is really to blame.

39 Comments

Filed under Narcissism

39 responses to “The Pooooor Narcissist

  1. Cookie

    This post is very powerful and reflects a lesson that God has been teaching me in the last two years: Be very careful when interacting with people who present themselves as victims, but are unwilling to even lift a finger to do anything to change their situation.

  2. This describes my mother. Whew… I’m reeling right now with all the memories this post brings to mind. How she would go on and on and on about the smallest slight, how HURT she was, how very pitiful she was. Oblivious to the fact that the way she treated certain other people was far worse than the things she complained about others doing or saying to her. She had no empathy for anyone but herself. When I or any one of her children was hurting to the point of death, her concern was always about how the situation affected HER. She was like someone wailing over a paper cut, at the bedside of an accident victim who has broken half of the bones in their body.

    I still pity my mother, but not because of how rough she’s had it. All things considered, she’s had a very good life. I pity her because something fundamentally human seems to be missing inside her. I don’t think she can help it. However, only God can know, and righteously judge, the condition of my mother’s heart.

    • Annette

      Same here: This post describes my mother, even though she pales in comparison to yours. When I dare to hint that this is her tactic, people get really mad at me. Do-gooders just love to believe such self-professed martyrs.

      The telltale sign of a sociopath Martha Stout gives in her book The Sociopath Next Door is a pity party in combination with very poor treatment of others.

      • “The telltale sign of a sociopath…. a pity party in combination with very poor treatment of others.” Oh yes! I need to re-read Martha Stout’s book.

      • My mother as well, lacks any empathy and she is always always the victim. i have limited contact with her. She manipulates her children and grandchildren against each other and fake cries at the drop of a dime. She may be my mother but i really dont like being around her. She is a gossip and has more loyalty and manner to complete stranger than her own children.

  3. Outstanding posting! I witness this all the time with my stepchildren and their mother. It has never once been her fault. Ever.

  4. Celeste

    The ‘N’s lack of empathy even toward their children seems inhumane to me. Also, they own no fault. Every error or mistake or bad scenario is someone else’s fault. Tough to breathe the air in the same room with them once these things become apparent.

    • their lack of remorse, empathy, morals and semblance of human emotions make them shallow human beings, however their superificial charm and adept ability to lie and manipulate makes them very difficult to spot. But now that i know the signs to look for, i do not stick around once i spot the signs……remove them from my life, i have had enough pain and hurt to last a lifetime

  5. Trying to hang in there

    I needed this post this morning as my narcissist and I just had a “discussion” about his behavior and how he is pushing everyone away. Our grandchildren have pretty much washed their hands of him (the last remaining holdout finally gave up just this week) and our daughter let go a few years ago. I have been married to him for forty-four years, and finally about three years ago I, thankfully, realized the problem with our marriage (or should I say lack of marriage as marriage is a relationship and you can’t have one with a full-fledged narcissist.) I stay because he has major health issues and requires a great deal of care, When I talked to him this morning about his need to examine his life and his motivations, all I got back was, “I am sorry that I have made you so unhappy. All I every wanted to do was make you happy.” Sounds so kind and caring, doesn’t it? But only those who truly know what makes a narcissist tick will see the truth behind the falsehood. What is really happening here is that he is trying to turn the spotlight from his issues back to me so that I will feel guilty for not responding appropriately to his “love”. I have just about decided, through much and varied effort to help him see his personality disorder, that it “just ain’t gonna happen”. My heart is so sad for him, but I am no longer the co-dependent and ghostly victim that I had become. I am strong now and praise my Heavenly Father for showing me the truth and giving me the strength to rise above. Blessings to all of you who are dealing with a true narcissist in any area of your life. Stay strong and informed! This is a great place to voice your pain when you are tired of burdening family and friends with it. And though they try their best to understand, only those in a relationship with a narcissist truly know!

    • Sam

      Thank you for sharing. I’m sorry for your pain. Does it help any to say, ” I understand” ? I hope so. It helps me knowing I’m not alone in this journey. May you continue your sweet walk with Jesus.

      • Trying to hang in there

        Thank you so much, Sam, for your kind words. Yes, it does help to know there are those out there who truly understand. I will pray for you on your journey. God’s amazing grace will see us through!

  6. Oh so true.”You had a love affair with Jesus, so I’m justified in having affairs with other women.” Yes, I was the evil Christ-follower with unconditional love,and a heart big enough to love a lot of people, him included, but not him alone. His work associate who met me at a church function not long ago said in a surprised voice, “You’re a sweet woman!”

    • ”You had a love affair with Jesus, so I’m justified in having affairs with other women.” WHAT??? How insane and evil is that!!!

      I thought it was bad enough when my first husband justified his affairs by telling me “You ain’t woman enough to satisfy me.” But this…. Whew.

      • AlonewithGod

        Yes, ma’am, it is spiritual abuse. My ex did it to me a lot. Criticized me for being right with God one day….then next day, saying “I’m so glad you’re with God.” I gave my ex a LOT of freedom, cause narcissists do not like questions and get very irate. I overlooked a LOT of bad behavior, but I was always the one accused of being judgmental. And I never said a word; he was projecting his hangups onto me.

      • Sorry I didn’t see I could reply sooner. Yes,Linda, the man is completely deceived by the enemy of his soul, but I’ve put prayers for him on the E5Men website so believing men can pray for his deliverance. I’m humbled beyond words that God placed my book froths blog, Move Your “…BUt…” – A Journey Into God’s Heart into the county jail for inmates to, prayerfully, find Christ’s love for them. God has such higher purposes for us – sometimes I “feel like I need an oxygen mask” from the heights the Lord takes me to. Grace, goodness, power and blessings to you, with thanks.

  7. Still Reforming

    Oh, you can likely hear the collective nodding of heads out here as we all read even just the title. It says it all.

    I’m in the stage now (perhaps where we all are – in a way) of trying to discern when and what to which to respond to my abuser. He’s still in my life because we have a child together, but we are no longer married. But he does this very same twisting of topics and substance in emails and on the phone.

    Sometimes I wonder if I just shouldn’t reply at all, and sometimes if an answer isn’t needed, i dont’ respond to his charges. Then later I think I should just to get the truth on record, so I might comment later with truth about what he’s stated, but then it gets thrown back at me twisted and mangled.

    I have come to the place where I am deciding that it doesn’t matter what he says, sometimes I need to speak or write just to get the truth documented, but not go round and round about it. Just state the truth clearly once, if correction to a mangled response on his part is needed, I may just refer him back to the original email, but I refuse to go round and round anymore.

    I remember doing this once when we were still married, because I decided to draw a line and not engage in such nonsense, so I said (thinking this entirely Biblical to not dispute or argue), “I’m not going to bicker with you anymore.” Then…. out of the blue about a week later, the garbage was overflowing and I mentioned to him that it was time to take the garbage out, to which he replied angrily, “I’m not going to bicker with you anymore!” It was just that weird living in our household. No one who hasn’t experienced life with an abuser would get it. It’s like being a character in an existential or surreal novel.

    Still… I don’t like leaving lies or mangled truth dangling out there, so I still engage with his nonsense, but only to briefly speak truth and be done with it. He just loooooooooves to go round and round about nothing. How often am I reminded that he is of his father, “the accuser of the brethren.”

    • Savedbygrace

      SR I so relate to this! I believe this is a tactic my n husband has used to ‘reel me in’ and keep me in the abuse cycle. I have a very strong part of me that wants truth and justice to be seen- this is not wrong, but as you say,the n takes it and twists it and throws it back at you and you end up going round and round in futile ‘discussions’!
      Dave asked:
      How do you win against the pooooor narcissist? Sometimes you don’t. Sometimes you just have to go on to protect yourself and let others find out the truth for themselves.
      I have had to really examine my motives and resist the urge to ‘win’ …
      yesterday I wrote a letter to my N in reply to some acusations..it is a letter on my computer I never intend to send.. but it felt good to get the truth out and set the record straight , allowed me to ‘get it out’ and it’s there if I ever need to refer to it…BUT it’s totally safe because he’s not going to read it and cant mess with it/me! I am in the process of accepting that some people just wont ‘get it ‘ and I have to let that go…
      stay strong x

      • Still Reforming

        Savedbygrace,
        I think what you did in writing that letter is marvelous. One of the regrets I have from my 20+ years with my husband (now ex-) is that I didn’t document things better. I wrongly applied “Love keeps no record of wrongs,” so I used to write things down, then chastise myself for it and throw them away or burn them. I think documenting what’s happened is valuable in case it’s later needed. It certainly doesn’t hurt anything to have a record, and – if you ever want to share the truth with him (not that it likely will result in good), well, you have it down pat since memory doesn’t always serve well.
        Like you, I have learned to let go that most people won’t get it. That’s okay. My Lord does. And I don’t really want to ‘win’ with my ex- anyway. I just don’t want error to reign. But I have learned (still learning) that speaking truth once can suffice.
        I’m in one of those mangled go-arounds now, because my now ex- is allowed to come on my property (a farm) to pick up our child for his timeshares. (I used to lock the gates.) So what does he do? He started making wide circles going around the barns on his drive off the property – just to be nosy and see what I’m doing on the farm. So I told him that he can just turn around by a shed opposite my house. He protested, saying he was driving around the property as a “courtesy” to me, so his truck wouldn’t make ruts by the shed. I told him the neighbors all have pick-up trucks and turn around there without making ruts. I gave him other options also, to which he replied I was beating a dead horse and that I’ll see in time the truth of what he says. (I take that to mean he’ll intentionally make ruts.) I started defending myself and repeating the options then I realized, You know what? We can just go back to the locked gates and meet there rather than have him come on my property.
        Sometimes it feels like I’m negotiating peace in the Middle East with a three-year-old. (Or is that a slam against three-year-olds?)

  8. me :-)

    There was a discussion about sociopaths and narcissists in a facebook group I’m in (the subject of the group has nothing to do with narcissism per se) and it got into a discussion of mental illnesses vs personality disorders.

    One of the things mentioned in this discussion was how people who commit heinous murders are often described by the media as suffering from something like depression. I commented that this stigmatized people with mental illnesses like depression and that the media wasn’t paying attention to possible personality disorders, such as NPD, which these people might have. Some people commented that I was stigmatizing people with NPD and that life is hard enough for them without having to live with this stigma. Someone commented that people who have been hurt by narcissists are very quick to stigmatize them.

    The discussion didn’t get much further because the group’s moderators felt it had derailed from the purpose of the group and shut it down. Anyway, I was wondering how you feel about whether people with NPD are stigmatized in various ways. I’ve seen discussions to the other extreme, for instance, the moderator of one facebook group I was in about narcissists insists that they are not human.

    • UnForsaken

      me :-)…..some people feel that labeling anything is stigmatizing, but that is pretty impractical. Stigmatizing is an attitude of absolutism and the expressions coming from it, in other words, anything can stigmatize or be prejudiced if you had that Intent or society has appropriated the usage for that purpose. (Scandal. Aha!) This is my own opinion . One dictionary says it is to mark someone with disgrace or discredit, to characterize as disgraceful. I find the word “characterize ” very interesting, as it seems to intimate you are drawing conclusions that may be exaggerated. Also, our goals are not generally to mark/destroy, disgrace or discredit a N by pointing out a fact…that they are one. To say for instance that someone has depression is not to stigmatize them, unless that is what we Mean by it and spread about it, or know someone will conclude about it. ( By the way, I totally loved your comment about depression . It shows care and common sense.)

      These are only my conclusions about stigmatizing, but believe me I’ve been stigmatized and prejudiced against by some of the “nicest” people, so hopefully I have a basic idea of what it feels like. There has to be a much broader, more in depth definition too.

      Yes, Ns are human! This one made me laugh, even beginning to imagine them as robots, morphed devils, or some kind of intergalactic life form is Way too ludicrous! Something tells me the dear lady needs a little more rationality in her agenda. Ahem 😉

      So, Can Ns be stigmatized and prejudiced against? Yes. For the simple reason that they Are human. But I do not believe that anyone is stigmatizing to simply state that they are Ns as seen by their behaviors. Unless: they intended the statement in that way, knew people would see it that way, or mounted a campaign of surrounding statements to purposely (even with truth) brainwash the hearers. Hmmm, that’s actually using N behaviors too, because we should never desire to brainwash anyone. It’s like trying to get everyone on your side without looking at the other people’s needs (lack of empathy) and trying to get some kind of power over them ( shaping how everyone sees/shames someone else). So the people who don’t want the authorized label must be used to these kinds of “power over” behaviors and beliefs, and Assume those are our desire.

      I see these behaviors and assumptions in a lot of politically correct social climbers, even those who aren’t Ns, because it sound important and will get them something. But really what would we have to gain from this? Most of the time I just see those of us with Ns in our lives as being concerned about other people’s welfare because they don’t recognize the N yet. We also may wish to get our N treatment and that can only be done by admitting something exists and must be diagnosed/labeled to do so. We try to point out the road signs of danger, but not to manipulate. We want to convince them, but that is their decision. We’re Not telling fairytales based on fact, making the listeners all come to the same predictable ending. We don’t desire power over their minds or to control their beliefs about someone for some self-serving purpose/game. What we want to share about Ns, or in calling it NPD, should be All Fact with the purpose of clearer sight, better relationships, honesty, and care . In healthy relationships this creates an environment for belief, better understanding, and earned trust.

      Most of the time I find calling someone an N does not pay off and can be a bad idea. I don’t actually see myself being able to warn anyone about my N, and have no desire to call him that except to myself in reminder or when I’m here discussing it. Some people will even brag about being Narcissists. I don’t think I’m going to give mine yet another tool to play up how “bad” he has it! But I have the truth and that’s what counts.

      The statements you shared from the forum are very interesting, because they don’t seem logical. Extreme views like these – well intended or not – shut off relationships and actually validate irrational behaviors and thinking like Narcissism. They go in circles, judging others by telling them not to judge, confusing us as to how they could have gotten there. In the end we may even begin to believe we just didn’t make ourselves clear enough, caring enough. In actuality, they are telling us we judge other’s simply by having that opinion, and this justifies their view as the the only valid one . We probably gave it our best communication, but the relationship/real communication is over from the get-go because they feel better correcting us.This is saying they have a right to tell you what to think. I DON”T THINK SO!

      Thanks for sharing,” me ;-)”. Your question is really good and one I’ve only recently thought through. Come back soon! ❤

      • UnForsaken

        A note: I still think the even though it’s possible, it would be very hard to stigmatize a Narc.1. People find them very believable and often make excuses for them. 2. The “hard times” in their lives are always turned to profit, a tool to get pity and to discredit others. We all have hard times, but I can’t see stigmatizing Or feeling very sorry for someone who “overcomes” at other people’s expense.

        Does anyone else have thoughts on this?

  9. Helen

    In my case, the Narc is my MIL and she’s very civert. She couches everything in portraying herself as being everyone’s helper, but that’s only so she can trample boundaries and control people. She has no other hobbies than meddling with her immediate family. Oh wait, no, there’s food. Her obsession. But back to the topic … Now that all other children are grown and gone and even the grandchildren are growing and possessing their own individualism, she resorts to hypochondria or Munchausen. I’ve posted this here before — there’s always an exaggerated illness du jour. mostly brought on by her food addiction – sleep apnea, high blood pressure UTIs, bad back, bad feet, you name it. Can’t do anything normal. Ohhh pooooor me!
    So a little over a year ago I called her out on her BS. Told her I had her number. Yelled at her. I just couldn’t take her civert manipulation a anymore. So she diverts the conversation, blames others, there’s much more to it than that but I’ll be brief. At that time I didn’t realize she was a covert narc. Now I’ve done my research and it all makes sense. All of her manipulation for years and years. Scapegoating her oldest daughter, making a golden child out of her youngest. Her own sister barely speaks to her. Her own mother, when she was alive, was frustrated with her often.
    Well now I’m the new scapegoat, bad guy because I’ve called her out. My husband knows it’s true but says she’ll never change. But at the same time he won’t hold her responsible for her garbage. I’m the meanie. Pooooor MIL!!!

  10. Great post! I wish I could not relate to it, but I do. This describes, to a tee, someone who I have cut out of my life on a number of occasions. And being one to freely dispense grace and forgiveness, when he would whine and cry loud enough, and claim to be repwntant, I would forgive only to become a victim yet again.

    His many victims remain silent, seeing no point in trying to refute his lies, yet he continues to cry foul, louder and louder, and has a lot of people believing that he is the victim, when he is the predator.

    Rant over…

    Thank you for this.

  11. I have to try this. Verbalizing, even if only to myself, helps me reframe the situation, and the long, drawn-out “Poooooooor __.” I’m hoping it will make me laugh and thus diffuse the N’s power.

  12. Karen

    So happy to have finally come to a place where I actually understand what was happening to me for the last 29 years. Thank you for the support that reassures me that I am not crazy and haven’t lost my mind.

  13. describes my mother to a tee and my ex!!! My ex was ruthless, cunning, evil and a master manipulator and liar. He uses people and tosses them aside with no regard or conscience; I never knew someone could be so evil.

  14. Object of Contempt

    I think that determining the real victim by who cries loudest is likely to cause problems. I think the best way is to see who has injuries. That isn’t as simple as it sounds… especially in church. It is so popular to vilify anger that elders and pastors I’ve counseled with have refused to acknowledge the real problems. When a person is abused, any angry response becomes ammunition. But *not* getting angry tells the abuser that you are currently in their control.

    Anger and bitterness are not things that should be chosen as a way of life. They shouldn’t be nurtured and nursed. They *are* a natural response to abuse. Telling a victim to not be angry (especially after discovering what is *really* going on), is kind of like telling a person who has been punched in the nose not to bleed. After 25+ years in this relationship with a very skillful, covert, unassuming N, I realize that it doesn’t matter how much of her sins are exposed… I will always be told to forgive automatically, to get rid of my wrong emotion, and she won’t be addressed at all.

    As a man I have found no support anywhere. The fact that I have been slow to anger means nothing to the people I’ve talked to. The fact that scripture illustrates that God understands people who have been provoked repeatedly doesn’t mean anything either. God himself has been repeatedly provoked, but somehow I’m expected to be stronger than God. I don’t want to be angry. I want to forgive. In the morning, though, another day of withholding/controlling/manipulating/contention/defiance will have my crushed spirit bleeding again.

    I can’t even get anyone to simply tell my N to treat me reasonably like a wife should. Not that I expect after all the deceit that she would change because of that. It is one thing that I think needs to happen, though … if not for her, then at least to validate me.

    • Helen

      I completely understand where you are coming from and feel your pain. Although I don’t know how I’d keep sane if it was my husband who was the Narc, dealing with it every day. In my case, it’s my covert narc MIL and I rarely see her as she lives several states away. I blew up at her 14 months ago because I had had enough. Because of that, I was blamed and I’m quite sure I’m the bully in whatever smear campaign she has going on. I haven’t spoken to her since the blow up. My husband was supportive at the time but MIL’s feet were never truly held to the fire. My husband is FOGged partially because he loves his mom, but also bc he’s stressed at work and doesn’t want this aggrivation added to it, particularly when we rarely see his parents. Also he wants to keep the peace for our two teenage daughters. Now I’m just expected to suck it up when she comes for a short visit (with my enabling FIL) in a couple of weeks. I, too, seek validation. Sometimes I just want revenge. I know that’s not right, but I’m also wary of being around her. I’m expected to act like nothing ever happened during her upcoming visit, I’m sure. Just not certain how I’m supposed to act around her now. I’m definitely not going to blow up again because that just gives her supply and continues to paint me as a bully. But I most certainly can’t stomach being fake either. I just keep hoping someday karma will catch up, or some sort of divine intervention. Any advice is appreciated! (Sorry for all the typos in my last post)

    • Still Reforming

      Object of Contempt,
      You may find company at A Cry for Justice’s blog (cryingoutforjustice.com). There are a few formerly abused men who read and comment there (joepote and wendell leap to mind; Joe has his own blog too – at josephpote.com – and from the few interactions I’ve had with him, I’d guess that he’d be a good help to you, as a another abused man). I’m glad you found Grace for My Heart. You are definitely among people who understand what you’re going through, even if most of us are women. I hope you stay and find the help and encouragement you need.

    • Still Reforming

      Object of Contempt,
      One more thing. In my first quick read of your comment, I missed this part where you wrote: ” somehow I’m expected to be stronger than God. … . I want to forgive.”
      This very issue was part of what cascaded into my leaving my former church, where I was integrally involved (teaching, doing bulletins, etc) for nearly a decade. My now ex- (the abusive narcissist) is still there, maintaining the pretense of the poooooooor victim.
      It was a year ago when after some deceptive behaviors, I put together a prayer request, which I posted at this site and A Cry for Justice – and given to the pastor and another church leader. The leader refused to read it (which, makes me think, he read part of it and realizing what he was reading, didn’t WANT to read it – because it detailed abuse, and that’s ugly and messy). That in turn caused some distance between me and this family. Nothing ugly; I just couldn’t maintain the pleasantries and chat and didn’t listen to the wife’s excuses of why they wouldn’t read it (We’re too busy, We locked it up, but don’t worry, we’re praying, etc.) Pastor called a meeting to “reconcile” with this leader. I explained the issue, and the guy asked me for forgiveness. I asked him to tell me what for, since I wanted to know if he repented of it – but he said “Whatever it is you think I’ve done.” Well, that can’t be repentance. He can turn around and repeat his behaviors over and over again – so…. that didn’t make sense to me.
      I told him then that I don’t know if I forgive him. I have no animosity or ill will, but ….. he doesn’t seem to care what he’d done. The guy then asked if he should continue to pray for me. I just stared blankly at him. Really? I just detailed possible child abuse and certain spouse abuse in a prayer request you won’t read and you’re asking ME if you should pray? The pastor said, “Yes, brother. Keep praying,” and the guy left. The pastor immediately turned to me and said I needed to research forgiveness. I told him that I had, because I wondered if it meant I owed my husband a blank check – Could my husband do ANYTHING to our daughter and I had to forgive him? To which my pastor said, “Sometimes you think too much.”
      The point being – I too pondered that very question – God doesn’t forgive those who don’t repent. Are we to do more than God? Here’s an article that helped me greatly at the time, and perhaps it will you too. Blessings to you…
      http://gideonz.tripod.com/articles/forgiveness.html

      • Still Reforming, that is a great article on forgiveness. Thank you.

      • Still Reforming

        mechellell2015,
        I’m glad you found it as helpful as I did. You’re very welcome. Thanks for letting me know you liked it too!! 🙂

      • Object of Contempt

        That is a good, concise article about a foundational topic. I’d already arrived at that conclusion myself, but hadn’t seen a thorough treatment of it.

        The last time I went for counselling it was with the elders of our new church. I explained the situation to one of them prior to meeting, and was assured that the elders were wise. They explicitly insisted two things 1) that I “get rid of my wrong emotions” and 2) that I should forgive without the repentance I was requiring. I said that reconciliation requires repentance, and that this is how God does it, but they argued. Of course, the N was present, so she now has all the confidence in the world that she will never be held accountable, plus she will always have people to burden me and keep me controlled.

        Of course there’s no point in telling them how irresponsible it is to blame the victim, to undermine a husband in front of a contentious wife, or to assume all anger is wrong. But I was astonished that they couldn’t see the foundational role of repentance in reconciliation. The one blessing in all this heartache is that I have had to learn all of this. I used to think like they do. Thank God for disillusionment. It hurts, but it is transforming.

      • New Creature

        OoC, thanks for pointing out that forgiveness and reconciliation are not the same thing. You CAN forgive without reconciling. As the article pointed out, forgiveness has to do with releasing a debt (it is no longer my job to get back at them; discipline/punishment is God’s job alone). Reconciliation is letting things go back to the way they were which is not a good idea with someone who is unrepentant. You can forgive the person embezzled church money, but if they are unrepentant, would you vote them in as treasurer? That would be foolish.

        Praise God our elders get that and our pastor is supportive of our time of estrangement from my MIL. It distresses me when the very people who are charged with helping you understand the Word understand so little of it themselves. We have to remember Acts 17:11–the Bereans were praised for double checking what Paul was teaching them by digging it out for themselves in the scripture. Thank goodness for online resources like the interlinear Bible that help the ordinary person dig it out for themselves.

  15. Object of Contempt, you have just described “crazyworld” so well. I have often felt like much blame for the “crazyworld” belongs to those who claim that being angry is somehow wrong. In my experience they are also the crowd that claims forgive everyone, everything (ongoing abuse?) and can’t we all just get along. They are participating in and letting evil grow. They are the reason that the N doesn’t have natural consequences for their bad actions and learn and grow from them. I’m tired of being punched in the nose and being told not to bleed. So what do we do about it?

  16. Reblogged this on Lucky Otter's Haven and commented:
    Do you know a “do gooder” who always somehow makes you feel guilty or less good than they are? Do you know a Needy Nancy or Ned who has an endless litany of problems that never seem to go away? Do they get mad at you when you try to help because your help isn’t “good enough”? That “victim” may actually be a narcissist. How can you tell the difference? Red flags. Gaslighting. Manipulation. Guilt trips. Projection. Blaming. They are never wrong but you will always be wrong.

    This article describes the covert type of narcissist, who can be much harder to spot because they aren’t arrogant, grandiose and in your face. They’re good at what they do, so it pays to be vigilant.

  17. Christina

    This post describes my “poor and pitiful victim-mentality” ex to the T.
    Just found out that He is a covert narcissist with many sociopathic tendencies. He got me hooked by telling me how miserable his life was; neglected by his parents and was sent to his aunts place until 6 y.o., how his parents never loved him but loved his other siblings, how he got hit by a car and motorcycle, how he was always sick, how others were mean to him, how he got a head injury during teen years, how his teachers were “rude” to him etc…. Being an empath, i took on his problems and miseries, and comforted him all the way….
    Little did i know he manipulated me, tried to steal my wealth, made me his servant/personal secretary. He rushed to marry me, but when my mom brought the idea of prenup and when i started to question his motives, he played his passive agressive game, gaslighted me, physically abused me, and launched a smear campaign against me.
    These people are the most pathetic assholes in the world. They pitied themselves and loves to seek pity, sympathy, any kind of attentions. They will complain and exaggerate any physical complaints, they will visit the doctor every week or two to get “attentions” from doctors. Sick.
    The coverts are nasties leeches, and everything they do is calculated and premeditated. Dont ever buy into their sob stories, dont pity them for being the “victim”.
    The coverts are way more dangerous than the overts… The coverts are basically sociopaths, just without the gregarious charm.

  18. Alabama

    The “instant victim” reference is sooooo very true. They quickly deflect blame onto others when caught of guilty conduct themselves. By way of example, we were able to prove that a Narcissist was directly lying to a court of law claiming she was a victim and impoverished, deficit by thousands each month yet evidence was never provided proving her claim. Thus, when confirmed the high-end extravagant lifestyle of domestic and international traveling with her live in romantic paramour, family and children, fine dining, expensive beach house excursions, real estate investments, all derived from the individuals she continuously attempts to extract monetary gains, it then became clear who was lying with conviction. As the famous saying goes….. “little lies turn into big lies”. Thankfully, the court saw through this bad faith endeavor and ensued with proper remedy. Sadly, even with this on record, she continues with narcissistic behaviour. Narcissists (gender neutral) are so consumed with their conduct that they often struggle to reverse course. What’s interesting, is that the more she continues to deceive others, the more religious she becomes by broadcasting her strong Christian faith on her vast social media pages. Concerning when N’s like this have perfected the art of covert aggressive manipulation to fool the minds of others when they could actually channel that energy into a positive instead of a negative. Very interesting to observe the unfolding of one’s guilt and shame all while hoping and praying they find peace within.

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