Background

Male or Female Narcissist in Dating (17:41), Workplace (with Connor Ryan) (EXCERPT)

Uploaded 11/21/2023, approx. 44 minute read

In what professions in your experience are we most likely to see a preponderance of narcissists?

Right. I'm thinking I mean the exhibitionist professions. I'm thinking filmmaking. I'm thinking acting. I'm thinking what about the corporate space?

Yes, actually the corporate space is the only space where we have studies. We do not believe it or not have studies with regards to actors.

The entertainment industry, show business, mass media, social media. We have studies with regards to the medical profession and we have studies with regards to corporate settings.

We don't have a single study about therapies. Psychologists, psychiatrists, tells you a lot.

So we don't know how many, what percentage of psychiatrists, therapists, psychologists. Right. That's really interesting.

And even worse, to obtain a degree in psychology or psychiatry, you don't need to pass any mental health tests.

You can be a raving lunatic, dangerous to yourself and to others and end up treating people. You could be unbounded.

For example, you could be a borderline. Where is the Hannibal Lecter case? It's real. It's factual. You can't be Hannibal Lecter and treat people.

So, and this is of course a guild approach. You know, it's a monopoly. And when there's a monopoly, a professional monopoly. And when there's a monopoly, standards are lowered or non-existent.

Of course, someone who intends to become a therapist or a psychologist or psychiatrist before starting the first year must be screened for a variety of mental health issues.

Starting, I mean, psychotic disorders, personality disorders, mood disorders. Some of them are seriously dangerous. Seriously dangerous.

So today it's a Russian roulette. You attend therapy with someone. You have no idea how boundary it is, how violent it is, how aggressive it may be. Will it blackmail you? Will it rape you? You can't tell. Simply you can't tell. It's a Russian roulette.

But in corporate settings, it seems that narcissists and psychopaths are overrepresented by 500 percent compared to the general population.

So three to five percent, for example, of chief executive officers of Fortune 500 have been diagnosed with psychopathy and/or malignant narcissists.

But how would you get CEOs to take, I presume that's the hair test, right? How would you get the hair and baby hair?

These are studies by hair and baby hair to people. Yeah. Yeah, you're right. They were administered the PCLR, the PCLR designed by Robert Hare.

They attention their narcissists. What do you mean? Yeah. Yeah, I know what you mean. Yeah.

The part of history. The part of history.


OK, so we're saying three to five percent of CEOs and in the general population we're saying one percent.

Similarly, among surgeons, which is the only segment of the medical profession to have been studied, the preponderance of psychopathy is much higher than in the general population.

There is even a famous, I think, neurosurgeon or neuroscientist, Fallon, who has been diagnosed with psychopathy and outed himself, admitted that he's been diagnosed with psychopathy.

So we have a place to be. And there's a very famous play, David Mammoth wrote. It was converted into a movie called Malice. And he talks about the God complex with the surgeon.

Right.

And the opportunity to play God at a life and death with somebody's at your hand, at your And that's that's part of the attraction. There is this and there is the fact that you have to cut someone. I mean, well, I don't know if you can do it. Do you think corporate culture rewards and incentivizes potentially psychopathic sociopathic behavior?

There's a school in psychology nowadays, an academic school, Kevin Dutton, Maccoby, many others.

They focus on what they call high functioning narcissists. These are narcissists who are beneficial to society. They are pro-social. They are communal. They're beneficial to society because they're daring. They're risk takers. And they lack empathy, which is good when you are, for example, a soldier or surgeon or a corporate executive who has to fire five thousand people or whatever.

So they lack empathy. Everything that seems to be wrong with narcissism in certain settings and environments is actually a positive adaptation.

That's the idea.

And so evolutionary psychology, school in psychology, evolutionary psychology suggests that narcissism is not a mutation, a bad mutation. It's not just an accident, a bad accident.

But on the very contrary, it's a positive adaptation that was carried forward through the generations because it has it has had some value or benefit to survival, survival value.

So and indeed narcissists, because they are so hell bent on obtaining narcissistic supply and garnering attention, so narcissists are creative.

Hans Eysenck suggested the quality of psychoticism, which includes an element of creativity. He said that creative people actually are kind of psychotic. It's not exactly psychotic, but like a bit psychotic.

So and but what I might just do that the creative people tend to be highly empathetic by nature.

Some and so I wouldn't generalize in this in this way.

Unfortunately, I cannot kind of participate in this dialogue. I cannot be going to look at it because I don't have data, anecdotal maybe, but I don't have data. Totally. I have worked a little bit and I do find that the warmth and the empathetic nature of this.

I'm an awarded author of short fiction in Hebrew in Israel. I won.

I won Israel's second most prestigious award of literature.

And I don't have a hint of it, but the trace of it. I'm clinically a psychopathic.

So I wouldn't generalize, definitely not based on anecdotes. That was that is what science is for.

We gather data. We arrange classified and we know, but we don't have science here.

Okay. I accepted. It is a massive generalization.

So, okay. So we're saying that in the corporate space, we'll say three to five.

We're saying three to five percent.

Generally, that's the only place we have data because it hasn't been in surgeons and surgeons. And we know that we were saying the general population is one percent or less about one percent.

Okay. So what I wanted to ask you about is strategies in dealing with narcissists.

Right. Actually, before I do that, can I ask you what the difference is between a psychopath and a sociopath?

Sociopath is not a clinical term, although it is used in academic literature here and there. It's not a clinical term, not a rigorous.

By the way, psychopath is not a clinical term. You will not find the word psychopath in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual and not because they haven't considered it.

Successive committees over 40 years, four zero, have considered the inclusion of psychopathy in the DSM and have rejected it because they reach a conclusion.

It's not a rigorous clinical entity.

So psychopathy and sociopathy are hype, media hype and to some extent academic hype.

And again, there's a lot of money in this.

Robert Hare became a multimillionaire by selling, by licensing the PCLR, especially to corporations. So he has an incentive. He's no longer an unbiased scientist. He has an incentive to propagate and perpetuate the diagnosis of psychopathy.

Sociopathy in the APD, the Antisocial Personality Disorder, is that to be umbrella term for them?

Yes, Antisocial Personality Disorder in its most extreme end of the spectrum is allegedly psychotic.

But you could have Antisocial Personality Disorder in people who are not psychopaths.

And there is work by Martha Stout, for example, the sociopath next door. And she describes run-of-the-mill pedestrian psychopaths who are not serial killers and they are not your neighbor.

Now sociopath is someone who, well, the distinction is sociopath is someone who is socially and culturally rebellious, defined, again, consummations, rejects authority, refuses to fit in, refuses to conform. It used to be called in the 19th century social character disorder, social character illness or sickness. So sociopath is a lot more relational.

It's not the individual, but the individual's interactions are somehow abnormal, dysfunctional or problematic to other people.

I would say that a sociopath is defined by the impact that he has on other people rather than by anything innate.

A psychopath, on the other hand, is supposedly a clinical entity in the sense that even if a psychopath were to be totally isolated on a sail or an island, he would still be a psychopath. He would still be, for example, defined. He would defy nature. He would still be consummations. He would speak on God. He would still be reckless. He would do crazy things and endanger his life and the life of others if there are others.

But even if he were totally isolated, he would immediately tell he's a psychopath. If you were to isolate a sociopath, sociopathy would vanish in the absence of other people.

The context is a contextual problem, contextual disorder, where psychopath doesn't depend on context.

Narcissism, for example, is a contextual disorder. When you isolate the narcissist from potential sources of narcissistic supply and from potential partners in the shared fantasy, by the way, a key feature of narcissism, which we haven't mentioned.

So if you isolate the narcissist from other people who are relevant, significant participants, collaborators in principle, he ceases to be a narcissist.

For example, when you place narcissists in prison, they are no longer narcissistic. They are no longer narcissists. They don't behave as narcissists. They develop empathy. They are not. They have positive impact on other people and so on and so forth.

Why? Because if you are a narcissist in prison, it affects your longevity or health, usually both. So the narcissist is a major incentive in prison to stop being a narcissist. And suddenly he's not. I know because I did time. And I've been able to observe myself and many other narcissists. Prisons are flooded with narcissists and psychopaths, flooded. And yet in all my time there, I have never come once across an expression or manifestation of narcissism. Not once. I haven't come across this empathy. I haven't come across criminal or antisocial acts. I haven't. Not once. It's pretty amazing. In prison. In prison. Because in prison, the sanction, the price, the cost of being a narcissist is unacceptable. So you stop being a narcissist.

In other words, it's a contextual relational disorder. That's why you don't think these are clinical entities, really.

I think the only clinical entity is the B is borderline.

Yeah, it also means that it's not immutable. It's not genetic. And it's pathological in that it's diseased, but a disease can be cured.

No, I'm sorry if I give the smartphone, if I give the wrong impression. What happens in prison is behavior modification.

Okay. The disease or the disorder doesn't go away. Okay. It's just that the narcissist is able to modify his behavior to the point that he's no longer diagnosable as a narcissist. We call this subclinical narcissism.

Have you heard of the dark triad? I assume you did. Yeah. In dark triad, again, self-styled experts online misrepresent the dark triad.

Dark triad is not narcissism or psychopathy. Dark triad is subclinical narcissism, subclinical psychopathy and Machiavellianism.

So in dark triad, there's someone who cannot be diagnosed as a narcissist, although we know that he has narcissistic traits and behaviors and behaviors and so on, but he cannot be diagnosed.

And similarly, he cannot be diagnosed with psychopathy, but he's manipulative. He's Machiavellian.

Narcissist, when they enter prison, become subclinical narcissists.

It's a fascinating transition, and it means that most, if not all, of the behaviors of the narcissist, which are abrasive, anti-surgical, hurtful, harmful, all these behaviors can definitely be suppressed, modified, eliminated even if the prison term is 10 years, they're eliminated.

And it's adaptive to the environment.

Yes.

So would it return then when the prisoner is released, would it organically just naturally return when they go back into society?

Yes. That's why I'm saying the disease is there. Disorder is there. It's just that it's a request to the point that it is no longer diagnosable.

We have a similar situation with some therapies. For example, we have dialectical behavior therapy, DBT. Dialectical behavior therapy is the therapy of choice for borderline personality.

And it's amazing. It teaches the borderline to regulate their emotions, to control their impulses, to stabilize their moods.

It's stunning. It's the most successful therapy there is, by the way, statistically speaking. 50% of people treated with DBT lose the borderline personality disorder diagnosis in one year and never regain it.

There's no chemical intervention here. There's no prescription. There's nothing at all. There's individual therapy and group therapy. That's all.

And 50% lose the diagnosis and never regain it. It has a 50% success rate.

Just to give you an indication, that's five times the success rate of CBT, which is the hallowed, sacred, preserver therapy.

So it's amazing. It's an amazing therapy.

By the way, developed by a patient, developed by someone who has had borderline personality disorder. She started to develop it in a mental asylum.

Amazing story. Now she's a psychologist, but she started as a patient.

So when you administer DBT, the person can no longer be diagnosed with borderline personality disorder because she has learned behavioral techniques.

She has learned to manipulate herself, to modify her behaviors, to control them somehow, to channel them, to sublimate them, to render them socially acceptable and so on.

But it doesn't mean she's not a borderline animal, actually.

The critical core dynamics, psychodynamics, they're there. They're absolutely there.

And so when we're trying to explain to clients or patients, if you go to DBT, you will no longer have this, this, this and this.

But everything else will remain. For example, you continue to feel empty. There's a problem of emptiness in borderline.

Not only borderline, you're narcissism as well. It's known as the schizoid empty core. You'll continue to feel empty inside.

And this cannot be tackled in any way, shape or form. Same with the narcissist. The narcissist continues to feel grandiose. He continues to hold everyone in contempt. He continues to feel superior. He continues to feel discriminated against and victimized. It always continues.

Only you can't see this in prison. If you hold someone in contempt and you make them in the showers later, it's going badly.

So, if somebody, I want to ask you from a gender perspective, right?

First, I want to ask you about if a young woman is embarking upon a relationship with a man and she thinks everything is going great. She's fantastic. She's loved this guy. He's fantastic. But there's something she feels is not right.

How could that young woman or any woman, what's the checklist for her to try and figure out is this guy potentially a narcissistic abuser? What would your perspective be?

And then I want to ask you from the male perspective.

In 1970, there was a Japanese, of course, Japanese roboticist. And he came up with the concept of uncanny valley.

Masahiro Mori was his name. He suggested that as robots become more and more human-like, as they become, as we become androids, we are going to develop an extreme feeling of unease in their presence, not because they don't resemble humans, but because they have become indistinguishable from humans.

And yet something in us, gut feeling, intuition, instinct, call it what you want, something in us is going to signal to us, this is not a full-fledged, fully baked human. Something is off key. Some note is wrong in this symphony.

And he called it the uncanny valley.

When you come across a narcissist or a psychopath, regardless of the setting, you are likely to have an uncanny valley reaction. You are likely to react to the narcissist or psychopath as if they were not fully human, not fully composed, not fully fledged, not fully put together or put together wrongly, or there's an off key or something. And it's going to know it to you. It's an intuitive thing.

Yeah. Yeah. We know, for example, that when two people meet, they exchange a gigantic amount of information via smell. They exchange about 100 items via smell alone, including the composition of the immune system.

Many of the genetic properties and so on and so forth are exchanged within a split, a microsecond, on a first encounter of less than two meters distance.

So a lot of information is being exchanged. Body language, of course, micro-expressions, facial expressions, the way I come by here, a lot is exchanged.

Some argue that the vast majority of information is exchanged non-verbally on a first encounter. That's why first impressions.

So what you're saying, Sam, is for a young woman or any woman is really trust your innate instance, your intuition as the number one reference point. A hundred percent.

But this is the first line of defense. This is the Maginot line.

And then start to observe. Is he breaching the boundaries? Does he treat you as an extension of himself? Does he make decisions for you? On a first date, he orders drinks without consulting you. Or he chooses a restaurant. Or he decides what you're going to do during the evening. I'm going to watch a movie now.

So that's a breach of boundaries and ignoring your autonomy, agency and independence.

Second thing, and by far the most critical, how does he treat others?

Because with you, it's an act.

Narcissists interact with potential intimate partners in a sequence that is Kabuki sequence. It's rigid, it's dictated, and it's never changing. Immutable.

So the first thing they do is they love more. Love bombing starts subtly the way he looks at you.

So with you, it's an act. You can't trust the information that you gather by being with the narcissist on first date.

Instead, monitor and observe how the narcissist relates to other people.

So the waiters at the table, other people as you want.

How does he?

Because there he won't bother to act. There's nothing to gain from them. So obviously he'll show his true self, if you like.

Moreover, underlings and subordinates and service providers provoke, trigger the narcissist's grandiosity is worst features. Narcissists are in distance a bit sadistic. This provokes his worst features.

So he pays attention to what happens in stressful situations when things don't go right somehow.

Does he become paranoid? Does he become aggressive? Does he curse? Does he break things? Does he pay a lot of attention to them?

Speech patterns are crucial. Narcissists are not really interested in other people. They want to talk about themselves or when they pretend to listen to you, they're planning their next performance.

So he's likely suddenly to ask a question, the answer to which you've already provided. He was simply not listening. He's likely to talk about himself, his work, his accomplishments, his brilliant future and so on and so forth.

I'm doing this to you in this interview, actually. My speech patterns are to some extent disrespectful. So it's an indicator of narcissism. These are enough.

How do you mean, Sam? Give me an example. In this interview specifically. I'm leveraging you to say what I want to say. I know that. And that's typical in an interview. In an interview, up to a point. And beyond that point, it's disrespectful.

Now, I don't disrespect you because I think you're unintelligent. I actually think you're intelligent. So there you have my respect. But I disrespect you because you are a tool. You're an instrument. You have no separate external existence.

Narcissists are not capable of perceiving the externality and separateness of other people because they've never been able to separate from the maternal figure and individuate.

Narcissism is a failure in separation, individuation. So they are still symbiotically enmeshed with a maternal figure in their mind. And they relate to other people the same way.

We are one now. And of course, because we are one now, you are not external. You're not separate from me.

Because we are one now and because clearly I'm superior to you, then you are my tool, my instrument.


So what else? From a female perspective, I think we know, we understand what a woman, a young woman should be looking for.

Is there anything else before we switch it to the male perspective?

Yes, the alacrity of the process. He would want to marry you on a second date and plan on having three children with you on a third date.

The speed, it's abnormal. It's unnatural. We want to move in with you by the end of the first date. Very common occurrence, but moving with you on the first date. Join bank accounts, whatever.

The speed should alarm you seriously.

The narcissist relates to potential intimate partners via a process known as shared fantasy. It was first described by Sander in 1989.

The shared fantasy, in the shared fantasy, the narcissist creates a script, the equivalent of a theater play or a movie. And then he casts you. It's casting central. He casts you in a role. And you're supposed to play this role within the fantasy.

Now, within the fantasy, you idealize each other. The narcissist first idealizes you. And because you will have become ideal, it idealizes him.

He's in possession of an ideal object, you. Only an ideal person can possess an ideal object. So that makes him ideal.

And this process is known as co-idealization. And then the shared fantasy progresses into its inevitable conclusion, which is devaluation, separation, devaluation, devaluation, separation, individuation.

So the narcissist converts you into a maternal figure.

By the way, even in same-sex relationships, even when the narcissist is a woman, the narcissist converts the intimate partner into a maternal figure because the narcissist wants to reenact.

The early conflict with the biological or regional mother and wants to separate from them and become an individual, wants to grow up through the agency of the intimate partner.

So the intimate partner becomes a mother. And then the narcissist needs to push her away. And the only way he knows how to do this is to devalue her.

And then he separates from her and discards her. This process is autonomous, automatic, and ineluctable.

There's absolutely nothing you can do.

If you're the best conceivable partner, most loving and caring and empathic and holding you, you name it. You sacrifice yourself. You're co-dependent. You're a doormat. Nothing is going to help because the narcissist needs to devalue and separate from you because you are his mother, your new mother.

Of course, the narcissist gives you the same treatment. He becomes your mother. He provides you with unconditional love. He regresses you to a much earlier age.

And that is why this whole relationship is apropos, our earlier conversation, is addictive. The partner doesn't fall in love with the narcissist. The partner falls in love with herself through the narcissist's gaze.

The narcissist idealizes her. And then it provides her with access to this idealization. And then she falls in love with her own idealized image. It's intoxicating. It's exactly what happens to a baby with his mother.

The mother idealizes the baby. And the baby gains access to his nascent self, to his emerging self, through the mother's gaze.

So initially, the baby's self is idealized. And that's why all babies are narcissists. They're all because the mother idealizes them, and then they come to believe this. They come to create a self around this idealization.

And that allows them to take on the world, to explore the world.

This is the sequence. The mother idealizes the baby. The baby feels godlike. The baby feels idealized.

And then he can take on the world because he's god. It's a critical, healthy feature of early childhood.

The mother's gaze is crucial in pushing the child away from her and into the world. It's as if the mother is saying, "Listen, baby, you are god. You're ideal. You don't need me. You don't need me anymore. You can take on the world. Go ahead. Take on the world.

And the child begins to explore the world and then discovers that there are other people in the world and develops object relations, ability to interact with other people.

This is all very crucial.

What the narcissist does, he takes himself and his partner, and he regresses both of them to age two prior to this stage of separation and individuation. And they become enmeshed. They become a single unit.

Oh, dependent.

And trauma bonded, is that the kind of phraseology we would use? They're creating their own trauma and bonding themselves together.

Trauma bonding is a controversial and misunderstood concept. The layman thing, the trauma bonding, is that you bond with the narcissist because he has the capacity to traumatize you and then the capacity to reconcile with you.

Intermittent reinforcement. Black and hot and cold.

So the narcissist loves you and the narcissist hates you, but he has the capacity to love you. So you become addicted to this cycle.

You say, "He hates me now. He's aggressive. He's violent." I need to get his love back. But I need to get it. I will get his love. Not that I need to get his love. I know that I will because intermittent reinforcement is the pattern of the relationship.

So if I wait long enough, I'll get the love back. And there's no love like it. As I just said, this is the kind of love that a mother is for the baby. It's unconditional. It's oceanic. It's all consuming, exactly.

So it's worth waiting for.

So this is the layman's interpretation of trauma bonding.

But the truth is that it's much deeper and seriously pernicious than all.

Because what the narcissist does, he triggers your other traumas. He triggers previous traumas. He pushes the buttons, the trauma buttons in you.

And because he's the one to push the trauma buttons, he acquires omnipotence over you. Only he has the power. His finger is on the button. Only he has the power to remove it.

And you want people to remove it more than anything.

Many, many victims are actually there. They remain there. Not necessarily because they expect the narcissist's love or they can't live without it or they're addicted to it.

But as a form of pain relief, the only person who can take away the pain is my narcissist.

Or if the other partner is also grandiose, the only person who can restore my grandiose is my narcissistic partner.

So it's a restorative function in many ways.

Sorry, go ahead.

No, go ahead.

I think we have a good understanding of it. And I think we have a good understanding from a female perspective of what to look out for.

I think the alacrity thing is very, very interesting as well. I hadn't considered that the speed at which the narcissist, the male narcissist will move this relationship process forward.

This is something really for women to look out for, as well as the other things we touched on.


Now let's reverse this. Let's talk about men, a young man. He's meets a girl. You know, he wants to find her amazing. What should he, should he be looking out for the same things? Or is there subtle differences, subtle nuances here?

It's a good question.

The warning signs with the male narcissist is essentially about control. Control, power, power plays, a symmetry of power and so on. The warning signs with the female, so before I answer your question, well into the 2000s, 75% of people diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder were men. And even today in the text of the DSM-5 text revision published one year ago, it still says that 50 to 75% are men.

The truth in the field is that half of all people diagnosed with personality disorders, narcissistic personality disorder, nowadays they're women. Women have caught up with men. And women have caught up with men because women have become men.

This is not something about men.

These are studies by Lisa Wade and many others which have proven again, I think very conclusively that women have adopted the male stereotypical gender role and have become men in the gender sense, not in the genitalia sense or the biological sense. They become men in the...

It's performative. It's performed.

Gender is performative. So they perform as men, exactly.

But if they don't only perform as men, they regard themselves as men.

For example, this famous study conducted in 1980 and then again in 2020 and women were asked to describe themselves.

In 1980, they chose eight out of nine adjectives which were typically stereotypically feminine, caring and pathetic, soft.

In 2020, they chose eight out of nine adjectives which were typically stereotypically masculine, strong, tough, competitive, ambitious, etc.

So it's not only performative. Their self-perception has become utterly masculine.

Why am I mentioning this?

Consequently, a masculine disorder, narcissistic personality disorder, is now universal because everyone is a man. Even women are men.

So they've acquired male mental health disorder.

Additionally, the distinctions that used to exist in the 80s and distinctions I wrote about in the 90s were between the manifestations of pathological narcissism in women and in men. These distinctions have all but evaporated.

Male and female narcissists behave identically with one exception.

And that exception is what is known as histrionic exception.

So male narcissists are controlling and antisocial. Controlling and antisocial.

Female narcissists are controlling less antisocial than men and they're histrionic.

When I say histrionic, they place an emphasis on the way they look, appearance rather than substance, for example. They minimize their intellectual and academic accomplishments. They act hyper-emotional. And even to some extent slutty, the raunch culture. So they would emphasize hyper-emotionality, external appearance.

Hyper-sexuality as well?

Hyper-sexuality, definitely. There would be teasers. The chase, sexual chase and so on. So they would introduce sex and looks into the equation in a way which in principle should make you feel uncomfortable.

Either because you feel hunted or because the superficiality and artificiality of this behavior is so evident and so pathetic that it's bloody embarrassing.

So these are all the signs of the male plus histrionic behavior.

But women narcissists would act identical to the men when it comes to decision making, alacrity and all this. They would act identical. They would just add to it ostentatious sexuality.

Actually, we discovered in studies that women with histrionic personality disorder and women with narcissistic personality disorder do not like sex at all. And they rarely consummate. They are far stronger on chasing and teasing.

But when it comes to sex itself, they try to avoid it or run away. They indicate it as some kind of developmental or childhood trauma or potentially.

No, manipulative instrument. It's Machiavellian. I agree that it's instinctual and possibly unconscious to some extent. But Machiavellian, in effect, to manipulate it.


Similarly, women with histrionic and narcissistic personality disorder misjudge the depth of relationships. They regard relationships as far more intimate than they are.

And this is the element of alacrity in women.

So the male narcissist would focus on planning. Let's buy an apartment. Let's go. Let's go. Let's have children. Let's get married.

He would focus on the logistics, the mechanics of the shed fantasy. The women would focus.

The women narcissist would be equally speedy, equally, equally crazy, crazy, but they would focus on on the emotional aspects, the intimate aspects.

And they would misjudge.

So in men, in men, we have something called sexual overperception. Men misjudge female behavior, almost all female behavior. And they think it's an invitation for sex.

This is called sexual overperception.

In female narcissists and female histrionics, we have intimacy overperception.

Because they think that men are in love with them within a single meeting and so on, they want to get married and have nine children on the second date, but not for the same reasons as the male.

The male wants to own the intimate partner. The female narcissist wants the intimacy, to secure the intimacy, because intimacy is translated in the mind of the female narcissist.

Intimacy is translated as power. Narcissistic supply, accomplishment. He is addicted to me. He's my slave. He can't live without me.

These are women phrases. These are female phrases. A man can say, you know, she never had sex like that. I'm the best. I'm the best in bed.

But he would never say, for example, I don't know, she can't live without me. It's not a male expression. It's a female thing.

But as you can see, these are nuances, because ultimately it comes to the same. Both the men and the women would press for an abnormal pace of relational development.

For different reasons, but not for the same. Both of them would try to control it. Both of them would make decisions. Both of them would disrespect your boundaries. Both of them would ignore your agency and autonomy or try to repress it violently and aggressively, if you show any signs.

Both of them would use a shared fantasy, absolutely. The female narcissist would fantasize about the intimacy dimension of the relation.

We're going to have a family. We're going to be very happy. And if children, the male narcissist would do the same, but he would fantasize on having a trophy wife. Or having children that he can then shape and mold in his own, in his own, you know.

Yeah, I mean, the trophy wife is obviously a reflection of his own prowess as well, because the more physically, the more admiration she's going to get from other males.

And so you bask if you're a narcissist in the glory of the, the quote, what belongs to me, that's mine.

So that's what I said, co-idealization. Co-idealization is if you are the owner, the proud owner of an ideal object, means you are ideal.

If you own a drop dead gorgeous hyper intelligent, super rich woman, you own her.

In the narcissist mind, he owns her. If you're the owner of this device thing, object, then that makes you godlike ideal. It's exactly like a status symbol.

The corresponding thing on the female side then is she kind of owns him because he can't live without her.

Yes, he's a slave to her. He's addicted to her. He's a drug. She's irresistible.

Which means she has secured in many ways her own future and her children's future. If he's addicted to her, she's secured a resource provider for the rest of her natural life in some ways.

Most modern women don't think that way anymore. Actually, they're trying to avoid long term commitments and so on.

Very few want children and many of them refuse to cohabite or to get married. No, it's controlling and objectifying.

The same way you buy a car. If you buy a Porsche tomorrow or whatever, you're going to brag. You're going to show it off.

So here she is. She owns a man and here he is. He owns a woman. And he idealizes the external aspects of the woman and she would idealize the internal aspects of the man.

His capacity for intimacy is love. He would idealize her looks.

That's fascinating. And I think we've given people some very good clues there.


But what to look out for to avoid.

Narcissist.

Can I ask you one more? One more thing on the narcissism piece as it relates to behavior.

Right. So imagine you're in a corporate environment. Right. And you suspect that the people you're working for, the authority figures are your boss, your immediate boss, your team leader.

There's a pathological narcissism we've already established. There's a perfectly possible chance that he or she is.

What steps do you take? Are you talking about removing yourself from that situation, from that environment? Or how would you deal with that narcissist? How would you deal with that person?

Because narcissists impose a shared fantasy in all types of relationships. Not only intimacy, not only intimacy, but in friendships, in the workplace, in church, in the army, you name it. Whenever the narcissist comes across someone who can serve as a source of supply or someone who can serve as an intimate partner of some kind, the narcissist imposes a shared fantasy.

And in the shared fantasy, he's God and you're the worshiper. In the shared fantasy, he's in control and you're coerced in the shared fantasy.

So the principles are identical in all the...

So the advice is the same. No contact. No contact is a set of 27 strategies that I designed in 1995. And it's still the best advice there is.

The second best advice, if you cannot go no contact, you have children with a narcissist, you can't lose your job for some reason, you can't move away from...

So if the second best advice, which is not something I came up with, I regret to say, but it's a great advice, is gray rock.

To gray rock means to render yourself uninteresting to the narcissist. A bad source of narcissistic supply because you're stupid. Or you are incapable of curiosity. You're not a worthy adversary. You're not a worthy object to be owned.

Narcissists don't have adversaries. They're God.

What do you mean? What adversaries? They're not adversaries. They're God.

Some contemptible inferior people may consider themselves to be the narcissist's adversary or enemy. That is because they're deluded. They realize the omnipotence, omniscience and perfection of the narcissist, they would have never considered themselves as enemies because to be an enemy you need to be equal somehow. So not as an enemy, but as an object to be owned.

So if you are a rock...

So you have to minimize your...

The problem here, Sam, is if you're in a corporate environment, and I have worked in a few... Don't attract attention to yourself. Minimize yourself.

I mean, Robert Green talks about this in the 48 Laws of Power as well, about never upstaging the master. That's essentially what you're talking about there. You minimize yourself. You're forced to state them.


My first advice is to disconnect. Resign. Resign. Literally. Because it can end really badly. It can end really badly and can affect your future career.

Narcissists, if they are mortified, narcissists can be narcissistically injured. It's when you challenge, undermine the grandiosity in some way.

The self-perception or self-image, to cause them discomfort by doing this.

But they can also be mortified. Mortification.

Now, sister, mortification is if you shame the narcissist inadvertently even in public. The narcissist is giving a presentation and you raise your hand and say, "I'm sorry, but this slide is wrong. You've shamed him in public. That's mortification."

You have become his mortal enemy.

Well, he doesn't have enemies, but you become something to be quashed and crushed and destroyed forever and ever. Amen.

Confined to the outer oblivion of deep space. He's going to pursue you. He's going to pursue you for years. He's going to pursue you in all future careers.

Narcissists are exceedingly vindictive when they're exposed to mortification. And this is known as the external solution of mortification. It was first described by Libby. Not by me. By Libby.

So when a narcissist is shamed or humiliated in public, in front of an audience that matters to him, he's going to ruin your life period. He's going to focus on this. This is going to be his laser force. So it could have been extremely bad.

The danger is in any environment, whether it's an academic environment or in a work environment, if you want to engage and you want to ask questions and you're curious, you could put your foot on a grenade metaphorically with a narcissist very easily.

And unfortunately, the incidence and prevalence of narcissism, pathological narcissism, is increasing. These are studies by Twenge and Campbell, the newer generations, people under the age of 25, under the age of 30 by now. They're much more narcissistic. They're five times more narcissist.

Do you think social media is fueling narcissism?

No, I think it's the opposite. Social media caters to narcissism.

Okay. This is a reaction to narcissistic needs.

But I think the restructuring of society enhances or rewards narcissism. For example, people are now self-sufficient. Technology renders themselves sufficient. Technology is also some kind of womb matrix, if you wish, because technology is all-encompassing, all-in-gulfing, all-pervasive, the Internet of Everything. And technology provides instant solutions.

And in this sense, technology is omnipotent. It's omniscient. It's very good. It's godlike.

So if you own technology, if you control technology, remember co-idealization. If you own technology, then you are as good as technology. And if technology is godlike, then you're godlike. That's why everyone in this dog nowadays is an expert about everything.

People argue with medical doctors and with professors and with... Why? Because they have access to Wikipedia. So, renders and entrance.

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing. The classic phrase in English language, a little knowledge. It's a dangerous thing because it gives the purveyor of that knowledge a feeling of power.

Yes, I think there is a phenomenon that I call malignant egalitarianism.

Malignant egalitarianism, we're all equal. We're all equal by virtue to having, possessing access to the same resources.

But you can serve Wikipedia. I can serve Wikipedia. We're equal. And so people would not hesitate to argue with me about diagnosis that I invented. They would tell me that I don't understand the diagnosis. And I better watch. Listen to this. She knows better. And there's a diagnosis that I invented. And so technology empowers people in the wrong sense and renders them more narcissistic. That's for sure.

But I think technology was a reaction to the rising tide of narcissism. And we're going to see more and more and more and more narcissistic technologies because narcissism is a vicious cycle, vicious circle. It is self-generating, self-assembling and self-empowering.

In short, the more narcissists there are, the more they structure society so as to reward narcissism. And the more narcissism is rewarding, the more narcissists there are. It's a feedback loop. So it's reinforcing feedback.


You know, in July 2016, New Scientist, Science Magazine, New Scientist came up with a cover story. July 2016. And the cover story said parents teach your children to be narcissists.

That's where we are.

Well, I mean, yeah, I was going to ask you about that, this helicopter parenting stuff.

Children not being exposed to any challenges.

There was another thing I was reading this morning. I was actually watching. It was about council culture.

And over 200 professors have been counseled in the United States in the last 20 years.

A colleague of Jonathan Heights was talking about this phenomenon. And it's a greater number of professors that have been counseled than all that were counseled during McCarthyism in the 1950s.

What's your perspective on dark triad, counseled culture? What's happening in society? Do you think there's elements of narcissism there?

The sociologist Bradley Campbell said that we have transitioned from the age of dignity to the age of victimhood.

Victimhood has become not only an organizing principle and a hermeneutic principle, principle that explains life, makes sense of life, but also an identity determinant and consequently part of identity politics.

The problem with victimhood is this. If everyone is a victim, there's a problem to find who is victimized.

When you are a victim, you are compelled to find a victimizer. Even if there's no victimizer, even if your victimhood is self-imputed, you would still work very hard to find a victimizer because the narrative would be incomplete and ridiculous.

You're right if you don't find a victimizer soon.

So the studies in Israel in 2020, four studies in Israel in 2020, other studies in British Columbia and recent studies in China and elsewhere, they're beginning to demonstrate, I think convincingly, that victimhood movements are infiltrated by narcissists and psychopaths who then take over and leverage victimhood movements in two ways.

To obtain attention. It's a power grab. It's a power grab to penalize, to statistically use the power to penalize, to coerce not necessarily with a goal orientation, but to coerce as a performative action, as a demonstration, to coerce ostentatiously. It's like a deterrent, if you wish.

So many, many victimhood movements have been taken over by narcissists and psychopaths.

Online we have the empaths movement. There's no such thing as empaths. It's clinical nonsense. These people are grandiose. Many of them are covert narcissists, I have no doubt.

And yet they pose as these angelic, blemishless, faultless victims who have been passively victimized by narcissists through an awful contribution of their own.

It's a classic splitting defense. I'm all good. The narcissist is all bad. I'm an angel. He's a demon.

And many of them go to that extent.

They say that narcissists have been possessed by demons. No task, or.

So it's an example of a victimhood movement which started off by me, by the way, started off by me when I established support groups of victims of narcissistic abuse and then metastasized and mutated into a narcissism controlled environment of ostentatious declared competitive victimhood.

Thereby demonizing the alleged abuser. It is an example in narcissism, but you have same example in race, same example in N.R.

When you have spotted the abuser, when you have spotted the abuser, you need to demonstrate your power. It's part of the narcissistic psychopathic matrix. You need to demonstrate your power. The Karens in international affairs.

And you did mention that the vindictiveness aspect of it as well. That there is a vindictive quality to the destruction of somebody's reputation and very often their career for the most minor sometimes offense.

Yes, it accomplishes several goals. You demonstrate your power. So you intimidate others. You punish vindictively and visibly and conspicuously.

So you have restored your grandiosity. This is a grandiosity restoring mechanism.

And you may even have converted people to the cause by doing this. So there's a missionary to this.

And this is true, for example, with me too as well, because you're mentioning council council culture.

But the me too movement is in my view has mutated the metastasize. And today it's a vindictive narcissistic, I would say psychopathic movement.

Absolutely. Which is hell bent on transforming or reversing the power matrix or power parallel parallel between men and women.

So a chauvinistic movement that is the equivalent of the alleged patriarchy.

There are people talking about elements of missing.

Yes. Yeah.

Yes. So that's another example.

Race, race relations. Same. It's bad. It's a bad situation because these movements start off in the academy. They started they were meant the ideas that were meant to stay within the academy.

Places for discussion. It's legitimate for an idea to exit academy. And yeah, this all these movements almost without a single exception started off with good intentions. They were authentic. They represented real grievances. And women have been abused in corporate settings in the entertainment industry. No one is disputing this. So they started off well.

But then they've been hijacked by narcissists and psychopaths. And that's in psychopaths couldn't care less. Who is a victim and who is not? As long as they are the abuses.

Now these movements are abusive. Victimhood movements and victimhood identity politics are absolutely abusive, coercive, psychopathic, antisocial and narcissistic. Period. That's not something. These are the recent academic studies. It is telling that these studies are not much more well known.

No, they're not. Can you point to one?

Goodbye. Goodbye in Israel. G-A-B-A-Y. And the colleagues. Four studies, not one. Yeah. Goodbye and the colleagues.

There are others. I have a series of videos about victimhood movements on my channel. And in the description you have literature. Yeah. You can find more.

If you enjoyed this article, you might like the following:

UP TO YOU How People Treat You: Change Your Messaging, Signaling

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the behavior of narcissists and psychopaths, emphasizing their inability to internalize moral reasoning and their lack of capacity for love. He explains that people's treatment of us is influenced by the information we transmit about ourselves and encourages us to cultivate dignity and self-respect. Vaknin advises against seeking validation by altering ourselves and instead advocates for authenticity and self-assertion as a means to change how others treat us. He concludes by emphasizing that we have the power to transform our lives by changing the way we present ourselves to the world.


Scoop on Narcissism and Abuse (with Shayel Naava)

Sam Vaknin discusses the development of narcissism, its impact on relationships, and the challenges of treating it. He emphasizes the difficulty of intervening in early childhood and the ineffectiveness of traditional therapies. Vaknin also warns of the pervasive influence of narcissism in society and its potential for self-destruction.


Narcissist Needs You to Fail Him, Let Go (with Azam Ali)

In this conversation, Sam Vaknin discusses the concept of narcissistic abuse and the dynamics of narcissistic relationships. He explains the narcissist's need for existence and the victim's hunger for love and intimacy, highlighting the irreconcilable nature of these two needs. He also emphasizes the importance of insight and empathy in understanding oneself and others.


Psychopathic Narcissist's Fantasy: Mr. Ripley in Truman Show

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the similarities between artificial intelligence and the narcissist, as well as the inner world of the psychopathic narcissist. He also analyzes the movies "The Talented Mr. Ripley" and "The Truman Show" in relation to narcissistic behavior and the impact on victims. Vaknin delves into the moral and ethical implications of choices and dilemmas in the context of narcissistic abuse. He also explores the concept of utopia and its relation to choice and information.


Narcissism's Loose Ends

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses various topics in different sections. In the first section, he talks about the technicality of glass being an amorphous solid, which is actually a liquid. In the second section, he discusses gold diggers and their relationship with narcissists, arguing that faking is a form of virtue signaling and that narcissists do not have an ego. In the third section, he talks about the rise and fall of narcissism in American society and emotional reasoning. In the fourth section, he discusses why some narcissists are successful while others are not, destructive narcissism, and the fallacy of assuming a universal human nature. Finally, he warns about the pursuit of meaning, addiction to hope, and aversion to risk leading to extinction as a species.


Resist Narcissism, Grassroots Up! (Interview with Dr. Lisa Alastuey)

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the rise of narcissism and psychopathy in modern society, which he attributes to social, cultural, and historical trends, as well as the prevalence of technology. He emphasizes the importance of recognizing the difference between healthy narcissism and narcissistic personality disorder, and the need to focus on being genuine, authentic, and assertive while recognizing limitations and shortcomings. Vaknin advocates for anti-narcissism at the individual level and rebuilding institutions to channel collective empowerment. He also warns of the dangers of social media and pornography, which he believes are killing us and leading to a disconnect among young people.


Civilization Ntopia: To Hell in a Narcissistic Handbasket

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the rise of pathological narcissism in modern society, which he believes is a ubiquitous phenomenon. He argues that healthy narcissism is rendered pathological by abuse and trauma, which are universal human behaviours. Vaknin also suggests that the way pathological narcissism manifests is dependent on the particulars of societies and cultures, and that human collectives can acquire a life and character of their own, which can lead to a common pathology.


Narcissism: The New Normal? (Mental Health Speak Show)

Sam Vaknin, a professor of psychology and author of Malignant Self-Love: Narcissism Revisited, discusses the distinction between pathological narcissism and narcissism as a societal, cultural, and historical organizing principle. He believes that narcissism is an all-pervasive phenomenon today and is the organizing principle of our society, civilization, and culture. Vaknin also discusses his own experience with narcissistic personality disorder and how he has developed a treatment modality called Cold Therapy, which has had an impact on him and has been successful in treating others.


Narcissist Lemmings: Generation Off a Cliff (FlowGrow Experience, Limerick City Community Radio)

Summary: Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the prevalence of narcissism in society and its impact on relationships. He explains the differences between healthy and pathological narcissism, the dynamics of narcissistic abuse, and the challenges of forming and maintaining intimate relationships. Vaknin also addresses the societal shift towards individualism, the impact of technology on social interactions, and the consequences of prolonged loneliness. He highlights the need for a reevaluation of gender roles and sexual scripts in modern society.


How Narcissist Perceives Narcissistic Abuse (with Charles Bowes-Taylor)

Sam Vaknin, a professor of psychology and author of books on narcissism, discusses his work and the development of the field. He suggests that narcissism is a form of religion and that narcissists try to convert non-narcissists to their religion. Narcissistic traits, style, personality, and disorder are distinguished by quantitative differences that become qualitative. The guest describes her experience of being hoovered by her narcissistic ex-partner and how it triggered both good and bad memories. In this conversation, Sam Vaknin discusses the nature of narcissists and their relationships with others.

Transcripts Copyright © Sam Vaknin 2010-2023, under license to William DeGraaf
Website Copyright © William DeGraaf 2022-2023
Get it on Google Play
Privacy policy