The Crash

It’s Narcissist Friday!    

 

What happens when the narcissist finally crashes and burns?

Oh yes, it does happen sometimes. We see it on the news. We read about it in the magazines. We hear about it from friends and family. And we wonder if justice has finally come.

The famous preacher or spiritual teacher was never what he pretended to be. There was a dark side. The great politician we were all supposed to love was compromised by his weaknesses. The model employee was cheating all the time. The favorite son broke the rules to serve himself. Then it all came crashing down.

Or did it?

We know what happens just after the exposure. Blame, excuses, blustering, hiding. The narcissist has great difficulty facing the truth. The position of influence might be gone, but the narcissist should not be counted out yet. Even though he knows he can’t have it, he wants it all back. The only reason for the crash was the unfaithfulness and unfairness of others.

“Have you no shame?” we ask when we see the narcissist seeking the limelight again. But this is not about humility… it’s about addiction. Unless the narcissist experiences a serious heart and spiritual change, he must try to return to what he had. Even if it means starting at the bottom again. Another lover, another position, another group of supporters: it can be built again.

Yes, the narcissist is smarter the second time. Slower. More careful. Even less trusting. Willing to accept smaller achievements. After all, he would have to be truly great to come back from such a blow. Any new success serves to show his superiority. Lesser people would not have survived.

And the supporters still gather around. Some never left. Others came after the troubles. Their weaknesses and intentions are obvious, but it doesn’t matter. Narcissists always have supporters. Quality was never a requirement. Only devotion. They watch, hoping to get something of value from the narcissist. Favor, fame by association, inside knowledge, something.

Most of the time it seems that the only ones truly damaged by the fall of the narcissist are those who gave sacrificial support. They are the ones who are embarrassed. Often they are the ones who lose everything. They took a risk and lost. They look back to see just how much it cost to love the narcissist. Too much.

No, the narcissist does not just go merrily on his way. He has fallen from too great a height. There is damage. But he is still the narcissist. He believes in himself. A little tweaking here and there and hope is renewed.

Do some change? Maybe. And then they write books about themselves or tell their stories to new lovers. Too few make any real changes in who they are.

When the storm comes, we should not try to hide under the tree. The tree has survived other lightning strikes. Those who trust in the protection of its branches are usually not so fortunate.

6 Comments

Filed under Narcissism

6 responses to “The Crash

  1. Anne Golden

    This made me think of OJ Simpson. There he was on stage at his probation hearing, simpering what a good person he’s always been. And if you didn’t know the truth you might take him at his word, he looked so sincere.
    I then read an article that interviewed people in Florida, where he might move to, and it was horrifying to see that some people would welcome him back with open arms. He was a famous sports figure that they would love to meet. How sick.

  2. My soon-to-be ex-husband. My father. It takes a long time to learn the lessons that the NP never changes, but I think I’ve got it down now. After much pain and grief, I think I have it down. Thank you for this blog and for helping me to feel that I am not so alone in the struggle. God’s blessings always.

  3. Narcissists come crashing down due to their own arrogance and abuse of others. At some point, employers realize that those who make a workplace intolerable need to go, regardless of the price. But because they don’t think anything is wrong with them, blame others, and are incapable of learning from their mistakes and making long term change, they go on to make the same (or very similar) mistakes with the next employer, the next company they found, the next woman, the next family. I’m not sure what their supporters get out of it – but there must be something.

  4. I’ve been praying for God’s great crash, undoing, untangling the web of falsehood and confrontation with True Holiness for the N I was married to for 37 years. Talk about putting up a false front! It’s been hard to internalize that God spared me from an abuser – intermittent reinforcement, intermittent abuse – and he’s still trying to control and use the Catholic church (no, neither of us was Catholic) to get an annulment to get his way and will and his new supply. He even wanted to become a deacon – evidently thinking adultery didn’t disqualify him! My prayers have been, “God, remove every idol from his life and send whatever it takes to bring him to true godly sorrow, conviction, accountability before YOU, contrition,and real God-fearing repentance.” Hell is too horrible even for my “enemy” to go there, but I daily try to surrender to God’s will in this as I work to untangle and detach myself, remind myself I can’t help him, and keep my heart free from bitterness. Jesus paid too high a price for me to bite Satan’s bait and poison my heart!

    • Diana

      RR – Thank you for sharing this. Broken and lonely from emotional abuse from my N and husband of 34 years, I’ve wanted to see his ‘crash’, but realize God may be giving him several opportunities to repent and change. From reading many posts on narcissism, it may be highly unlikely that will ever occur, but you gave me the words to pray for this person who has hurt me. Hell truly is not where we should want anyone to end up. God’s forgiveness covers a multitude of sins, and only He knows the heart.

  5. Sonja Arnold

    It’s hard to know, for me, whether the crash is because they are the narcissist or they are the people who stand up to the N and are blacklisted and turned on and shamed. It is hard to tell from the outside and really want to offer support for the latter in times of crushing and cruelty. Any hints?

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