Narcissism POV: Hers vs. His (with Diana Farca)

Uploaded 9/18/2023, approx. 1 hour 23 minute read

Hello, I'm Anna Farqua, writer and producer, and I invite you to talk in tandem on online show Depicting Relationship.

Today guests are Professor Sam Vaknin, author of "Malignant Self-Love, Narcissism Revisited," and his lovely wife and editor, Lydia Aranyalovska.

Sam Timoll from New York Press called you the leading expert on narcissism. I'm guessing that just a small part of it is sustained by your personal experience, and a lot of it is sustained by the thousands of interviews you made around the years.

Could you please walk us through your journey with narcissism?

Yes, I was diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder. I'd been diagnosed twice, once in the 80s and once in the 90s.

The first time because of a woman, and the second time because of prison, and I can't see the difference usually, but the first time my fiancé had abandoned me in the United Kingdom, so we had agreed to go to couple counseling in Canada, four places.

So we were traveling to Canada every week from the United Kingdom, and there was an Israeli psychologist was then residing in Canada, diagnosed me with narcissistic personality disorder.

In 1985, this was only five years after the diagnosis of narcissistic personality disorder was first formally recognized in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual Edition.

Three, no one knew anything about it. There was nothing written about it. No one knew what they were talking about.

So it was very difficult for the psychologist to explain to me what my problem was.

He just said, "You seem to fit the criteria."

So I dismissed him, of course.

I devalued him.

I said, "He doesn't know what he's talking about. He's not credential. I know much more about psychology than he does.

Plus, I'm much better looking."

And that was the end of that.

Then in 1995, I found myself in prison.

I used to be a very big businessman, and I owned a bank, and I misbehaved with a bank, and I found myself in prison.

And in prison, it was obligatory to be evaluated by a psychiatrist in order to go on probation, on parole.

So I was interviewed by a psychiatrist, and he told me, "Listen, you have narcissistic personality disorder."

That was a lot of lecture. That was already in 1995.

There were already some studies, not many, '92, '90. Or there were a few studies, maybe five, maybe 10, and I'm not exaggerating. That was a maximum.

And so I had some literature to start with.

And then I went backwards.

I had a disease. I had cancer of the soul.

And there was no written literature.

I needed to understand what was wrong with me because I lost my wife and my life.

I lost my money. I lost my reputation. I lost everything to this disease.

And so I went back, and I started the work of, I started with Freud.

Freud was the first to write about narcissism in 1914.

And then it continued all the way to Kohut, Heinz Kohut, and Otto Kernberg, and so on.

But these people stopped writing about narcissism.

The last time they had written anything about narcissism was 1974.

Do you remember the first book you read?

Sorry? Do you remember the first book you read on the topic?

When you had...

The first book I read on the topic was Alexander Lowen's book about narcissism.

It was a 1974 super popular book. Not very serious, mind you.

And it was followed by Scott Peck, "Road Less Traveled." And Scott Peck said that narcissists are demonic, and they are the reification of evil on Earth.

I didn't find it a very convincing, clinically convincing argument.

So there was no serious literature, because nonsense.

In 1995, while I was in prison, I had written the first draft of my book, "Maligna Serflov, Narcissism Revisited." It was written by candlelight at night in the cell, in the cell with 10 other men.

And then when I got out of prison, I met Lydia in Macedonia, and she established the first website ever for narcissism. That was the first website on the web, ever. And for nine years, it was the only website on the web, for nine years.

And so for nine years, I was trying to educate people about what is narcissism, what is a narcissist, how the narcissist affects himself and his loved ones. So that's how it all started.

I'm sorry it was a bit long, but I wanted to give you the whole sequence.

And since then, of course, it became a global movement. There are more than 40 million people in narcissistic abuse support groups.

Narcissistic abuse is a phrase that I coined in 1997, because I realized that the abuse meted out by narcissists is not like other forms of abuse. It's very, very different. We can discuss discuss it a bit later.

Lydia can provide, I think, the perspective of the 1997 to the publishing of the book, which is 1999, first edition of Malignan Seflab.

The first book ever on narcissistic abuse was in 1999. And it was because of her.

I threw it to the garbage. I didn't want to publish it.

It's actually how did you know when I met him, I already had some insights of unstable and already recognized family dynamics. That is my family. That was my family.

And there were many questions that I couldn't find an answer. When I met Sam, there were some answers. Something was resonating of what you were saying, what you were talking, discussing, among each other while introducing each other to each one of us.

So there were many elements that I noticed and resonated with what I went through just a year or less than a year before.

And it was after I was traumatized the previous year before I met him, a year before I met him, that I had like nine very close and family members that died. And I lost them. I lost them as people, as beloved ones. And I stayed with people who are brutal. I can use today, I can use that word, but I didn't know why.

So with communicating with Sam and him explaining me what he was going through while writing the book, how he spent his life, what happened to him, I could have made a difference. And it was challenging because finally there were some answers to the unknown and stabilized me emotionally. I felt more sure it's better to know the truth than to live in a bubble.

You actually lost your beliefs. I caught myself distrusting anyone, being alone. And it was time to make a decision about myself, where to go, what to do, where to focus and so on.

So this subject became very intriguing, interesting. And there were interests, many people got interest in the subject.

And this group that Sam mentioned grew and all the time they were asking questions.

So the book has a section of frequently asked questions. These are from that group that people were talking, asking, they were also dealing and going through something with their beloved ones, with their families. And it was a very pleasant feeling, pleasant feeling that I found myself also helping in a way to answer and to make clear their standings in their families and the loved ones, because I know what I went through.

And the subject of narcissism was giving answers to the feelings. Actually they validated my emotions as other people were saying.

So we were not, and it was interesting to see that they were fighting for themselves. They were not just, okay, I will avoid the question. I will not tackle two brave women, mostly that they seek answers.

And they actually suggested, why not to publish a book?

So we did publish a book, but we found ourselves then in Prague.

So the book was, the first edition of the book was published there.

So because they said, I don't want to search for the answers on the internet. I need the book to open it, just to check what is good for us, what is good for me.

So it is, there was good enough reason to get involved in all this business sort of, publishing the book.

To complete the answer with your permission, one more sentence.

To complete the answer since then, I started to ask people who had been diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder to approach me and to be included in a database.

So I administer a questionnaire of 682 questions that I have. Anyone who wants to be included must provide a letter from a diagnostician, a testing that he had been diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder and which tests were used.

So I insist usually on MMPI2 and MMPI2 tests. I saw in the book, you should read the book.


And then they're included in the database today. There's 1,876 yesterday, actually, this is another three today. So about 1,900.

And each one is answered as questionnaire of 682 questions.

And then each year there's another questionnaire of 50 something questions.

So I have the largest by far database in the world about narcissistic personality disorder with more than 1 billion data points about every conceivable dimension, emotions, sexuality, interpersonal relationships, empathy, intimacy, absolutely everything.

My work is based on this database by now.

I undiluted, I disappeared in the story.

And actually most of what I say about narcissists doesn't apply to me.

Yes, sorry.

Go ahead.

I understood, but the question that pops to my mind is this, with the entire knowledge you have, they normally pinpointed the term trauma bonding.

In your case, it's about healing bonding, which I understand, because you both had narcissists in your life.

I also did.

Interesting is that by knowing the dynamic and by recognizing it, you can literally have that support group bigger and bigger and bigger and help people have awareness on the topic.

My question that popped in was this, do all families that face narcissistic abuse have this side of seclusion of being a bit redrawn to the world or are there very ongoing families like the celebrities you see? So are they always compact or sometimes mingling with normal families?

It depends on the narcissist.

There is a typology of narcissists.

So there is the overt narcissist. The overt narcissist is not self-aware of anything wrong or if he is aware of his abrasive and antisocial behaviors, he would tend to glorify or glamorize these behaviors. He would tend to say, I'm the next stage in evolution. I'm superior to other people.

And the overt narcissist is usually what you call a celebrity type. The overt narcissist is extroverted, life of the party, charming, outgoing, gregarious, and usually embedded in families which provide the support for these kind of behaviors.

There is also much more likely to engage in substance abuse and in reckless and defiant behaviors. So he is much closer, the overt narcissist is much closer to the psychopathic pole of narcissism, to psychopathic narcissist or malignant narcissist.

The other type of narcissist, the other major type, because there are many types, but the other major type is the covert, shy, fragile, vulnerable narcissist, which was first described in 1989. And I contributed a lot to describing this type. And I came up with the inverted narcissist, which is a subtype of covert narcissist.

Anyhow, the covert narcissist is withdrawn because he cannot obtain supply normally. He isvery frustrated, resentful, envious, passive-aggressive, seething, conspiratorial, scheming and very in this sense, very toxic.

With somatic and...

So there are many other types.

Somatic and cerebral is a typology that I suggested. And I simply realized that some narcissists obtain supply by leveraging their intelligence and their intellect. They are intellectually pyrotechnic. They show you how clever they are, how amazing, how smart, how brilliant and so on. And they get your admiration and adulation.

So this is cerebral narcissist.

And cerebral narcissist would deny his body. He would not pay attention to his body. He would neglect himself. He would never exercise. He would rarely, if ever, have sex.

It's like he's bodyless because his supply comes from his mind.

So he puts all his resources in his mind.

The somatic is the opposite. It's a narcissist who leverages his body.

So he would body-beach or he would dress very well or he would have sex endlessly and incessantly or anything to do with the body. Or he would be athletic, super athletic and so on. That way he would get supply. That way people or women would appreciate or admire him.

This is another typology.

There are many other typologies, for example, very important typology that is just being coming out is high functioning versus low functioning. Why is that?

I read in the book, there are some that seem zombies, some that seem.

So high functioning narcissists and narcissists who, despite their disorder or because of their disorder, succeed in society.

The disorder becomes a positive adaptation. They use the disorder to climb to the top, to become pillars of the community, to make money, become successful and to get women.

So these are high functioning, low functioning narcissists, a narcissist whose disorder disrupts their functioning in a variety of contexts and settings.

So we're beginning to make this distinction.

So the field of narcissism is just evolving.

Another distinction that I suggested in 2000 is between the pro-social narcissist and the anti-social narcissist.

They are narcissists who are altruistic, charitable, giving. They are part of the community. They are part of society. They are morally upright. They never do anything wrong.

So these narcissists, for example, religious leaders, they get their supply by being moral, by being pro-social.

So I suggested the division between anti-social narcissist and pro-social narcissist.

Narcissism is in all of us. We all have healthy narcissists and exactly like a normal cell, the cell can become cancerous and malignant. Healthy narcissism can easily become malignant and so on.

So consequently, it infects everyone. It's an equal opportunity contagion.

So you have pro-social, anti-social, somatic, cerebral, thishigh functioning. Anyone can become that.

When I read that, and there are endless combinations.

You mentioned traumapole.

People remember traumas much more than joyful moments.


We have a mindset.

So we, by nature, connect more to the traumatic.

That's why the traumabonding is much more firm than because of the element in narcissism that we are not actually sure in ourselves because of our inner uncertainties.

We have this narcissistic defense mechanism.

And if we don't have, if we don't value ourselves, if our self esteem is underestimated by the environment, then we are shifting and the line is very thin to cross and become up actually to upgrade ourselves to be more narcissistic, more grandiose.

So in time, as we are getting experiences, especially remembering the trauma and we are more traumatized, we develop more narcissistic traits.

And in my country, we say that, yes, older people are to be listened to, heard about their experiences, but also they are selfish.

In time they learn from their traumatic experience.

They speak from self.

Okay. That they are more selfish.

So the first sign is that of the narcissist is selfishness.

What you notice, you would say selfish person.

Not selfish in giving, but also sharing, emotional sharing.

They want validate and they want validate for you, your own emotions.

They are more rigid in trying to understand what you are saying.

You are honest emotion.

You will emotionally open. You will share with them how you feel in order to share or asking for their validation.

So you will adapt yourself more to the environment.

You would like to know more about yourself, but they are using it.

Selfish people abuse. I've used that.

They consider it your weakness.

And here is where I consider that if a person is not aware of narcissism, especially about other people, they are not aware of their own narcissism.

And what I see and I really don't like is when people say, Oh, for example, about me, but you are his wife, you are dormant, you are codependent.

I was diagnosed. I don't know when, but I said, look, I feel okay with myself.

You know, because of my past, because of the environment, because of my own values, we are all different. You can't just label someone.

So it's very wrong, very wrong to go to, to take, to diagnose someone without taking into consideration the upbringing, the cultural values, the environment, the conditions of life in the country that they live. It's very wrong.

And I treat people first thing, what is, where are you calling? Where are you? Where were you born? Which year were you born? There were different trends. The values were different.

So you can't, it's not a diagnosis of narcissism. It's not, you are narcissist. It depends on many elements.

Also we change all the time. As the survival conditions change in the environment, the trauma must appear, disappear. We bond with other people in different levels, in different ways.

So distrust is enormous. These days, people just withdraw. They don't trust each other. Even, you know, it's only also because of the virus that is here, but walk them up. They are all afraid. We all are afraid today.

So that is our primary trauma.

We actually traumatize ourselves first. That's why we need a system defenses.

We are shamed of ourselves, our insecurities. We don't have a value.

How are we able?

Uh, can we do it?

We suspect ourselves.

Actually there are no victims of narcissistic abuse.

This is we are, yeah, we arevictims of ourselves.

It's a choice.

Yes. It's a choice.

It's a victim of sexuality. In Romania, it's very prevalent.

I'm thinking, my guess is in your country also.

He writes in the book that 50% to 75% are men.

So I don't want to be the lawyer of men, but in Romania, they have a thinking that says, strong men don't cry, etc.

And it makes you feel weak when you feel vulnerable. And to such extent that they are a bit encouraged to be narcissistic in our country, and they also have the thinking, which I agree it's nice to cook and to be self-sufficient and to be a lady, but they have the idea that women should have no, healthy boundaries in relationships.

What I also, from your book, is that I have so many people, there are always more sides of the story. Some of them have this victim mentality or they shame themselves and they say, if I would have been stronger or, if I would have been weaker, I think that this is wrong.


Because from your book, I take it that from the thousands of interviews you made, there is no formula.

So there is no formula for a partner who chooses to be in an narcissistic relationship.

It has all sorts of dynamics, reasoning, underlying it.

But what I took from what you said is that there are so many faces of the story that, I'm very curious in time, in your relationship, for instance, if the underlying fear is this of abandonment, when you achieve something, Lydia, or when you have successes, do you feel encouraged?

Because one thing that I see in this type of relationships is a cute jealousy.

Does it manifest or can it be contained the jealousy of the narcissist?

You can also freely, I will bid you off.

Also, a topic very fragment in mind.

So yes, it is.

Uh, it's his cerebral narcissist.

And he has grandiose.

He knows all and better and best.

And that is unbeatable.

So it is, I agree.

But because he doesn't have, he actually, because he doesn't trust his instincts because he doesn't trust his urges.

He did not accept his needs because he has to sustain the image that he created.

And that is the driving force to support all, all the time to just push up, to sustain that image that he has.

We all have image of ourselves, but it's changeable.

With the times, with the new information we adopt, that is the difference with the narcissist.

They are rigid.

This is the word, the keyword in my understanding, they are rigid.

They don't want the comfort zone.

You heard about it.

Like they don't want to exit and every life coach will say exit the comfort zone in order for him to sustain that image.

He is not open to listen to hear.

He rejects someone else, else's opinion, but it's not that he did not hear and listen in order to sustain his own image that he is grandeur, that he is the brain.

He will adopt.

He will adopt.

He will list, he would, but he won't say it's, that he heard it from me, but like overnight I came up with this, you know, it happened a few times, but it happens.

We are, you know, but it is like, and it's not jealousy.

It's not jealousy, but because of their inner dynamic, it is.

It seems like jealousy to a person who doesn't understand the basics, how, how, what, what narcissist needs, how they function in a way, how much energy they need to sustain that image of themselves first.

Then maybe if they are good, if they have time, if they are patient, they will hear when they will need to feed themselves with, to supply themselves in order to sustain their image.

Then they will listen very carefully.

They will be even curious and you will see, you will think that they're in love with you.


So much, they value your opinion and so on, but, it's not like that.

They use it for themselves and they glorify only for themselves.

That makes them selfish.

And that's why we say the narcissists are selfish and they are devils, but it'snot because ofjealousy.

They are driven by envy, by their dark side.

It's not really jealousy.

It's not really jealousy.

We misinterpret.

You know, I asked the question, you say so nicely in the beginning of the book, you dedicate the book to Lydia and you talk to such high esteem that you can see it's made out of the best intentions.

So I'm imagining a man, not necessarily being jealous on the wife's accomplishments, but most cases this happened so like he discourages her. He puts her in far away from the light, but in the book from the thing you said, like the first rounds when you mentioned her so highly, I feel like that all there is also the type of narcissist that says, look, I have an amazing wife or girlfriend or this. It means I have good taste and I know how to pick a good. This is called co-idealization. This is what I, the narcissist, the narcissist idealizes his partner in order to idealize himself.

If the narcissist has a super intelligent partner, that means he's super intelligent because why would she be with him? If he's not, if he has an exceedingly beautiful woman, he must be very attractive. Otherwise, why would she be with him?

So this is a process of co-idealization.

Whenever the narcissist idealizes his partner, whenever, for example, he pushes her to accomplish things which I am doing with Lydia a lot, this is in order to idealize himself, to feel better about himself.

So this is a critical distinction.

Narcissist, whatever they do, it's about themselves.

The image that they created.

So if you have, how will I explain it?

No, no. It's not jealousy. It's envy.

So if, imagine a cerebral narcissist knows it all, who are you to tell me?

Also is the play power.

He feels more strong, dominant. In animalistic terms, it's called dominance.

So they have their controlling territory, including everything, including me, I mean, the wife and the dogs and the household. They have to have everything. We don't have dogs.

But we can't have fish. I have a cat. And she died. And she died.

Open V. She was ending.

So if, if I, for example, no way he needs something, I don't mind giving because that is my background. That I am, I have this, like, I want to feel useful. I want to contribute. I need at once help.

You know, if someone approaches me, maybe they need help. I know how I suffered when I was alone. So why not to help someone who felt, who feels bad about himself or whatever?

So I have this concept of need to be needed. My need is to be needed and useful. So people come and abuse it. Of course they will take advantage.

But I don't mind because to be used and abused because that is how I grew up.

So I have this filtering that I can't allow myself helping people.

So I am myself with this human elements because we don't live separately in a conversation that is how it is today, for example.

But I grew up with other people. I was eating at my neighbors and it was much more tastier.

So differences that I experienced in life to confirm my values.


Not my mother, not my father, not other people, the experiences, but narcissists as opposed to narcissists, they're using people, other people to validate their, their, they don't have the sense.

They can't actually get incapable of experiencing their lives.

But they need someone.

He calls me external heart because I have to remember what we both experienced. And I will tell him, this is your history. When we were, for example, in Budapest, we experienced this.

So he leaves, he leaves through my senses, my senses.

I sense, I experience and whenever he needs, I give it to him. I upgrade him. I update him for every moment.

So I'm just a narcissist secondary, actually, a narcissistic supply, according to his book.

I don't mind being that because that is how it go up.

Of course, there are many elements that I cannot, that I cannot, not say, but I cannot express because he's not capable of understanding them, even to grasp them as they exist.

Other people do. They connect, they talk. He doesn't trust his senses, but his senses, you know, the gut feeling. He doubts himself. He has very good instincts. He has enormous capacity.

But he is afraid, terrified to listen to them.

Where this came from?

So narcissists in general, they panic and it's difficult for them even to decide upon something, to decide to make a decision to do this or this because they can't trust their senses, their instincts. That's why they need secondary sources of supply to know that they live.

Via their sources of supply, they think that they live their lives, that they are alive.

I verify, validate narcissist existence. And I don't mind because, for example, Sam does a good job, but there are some that they are not worthy. So I try once, twice, three times. They don't have anything. I mean, they don't have any conscience. Like they are disconnected completely. They are not aware. You will hear them talking like there are some gurus, you know, the cult leaders are like that, for example, but implementing it like they're divorced from implementation. You know, the image is there about themselves, but not implementing the things. Sam is not like that.

So this is the difference.

People should know about these small differences.

But when you take all of them and you in a big picture, you fit them in a big picture, you will see that they are really inhuman.

They don't because they don't think they suppress their human needs, their human values. They like negate themselves and they need validation, constant validation from other people to feel that they did they exist, that they are alive.

What I took from the book, he did an amazing job describing the anxiety, anxiety, which he also talks about of the narcissist.

Another amazing thing you did when we talk about how the narcissist was created, you said like normally the manual, the fifth edition says that they were normally made through abuse.

My experience is not through abuse, it's through the hot and cold, the unavailability.

And what I took from my childhood was very hard for me to actually set the boundaries.

This is how I ended up in a narcissistic relationship.

So I was curious, Lydia, so you kind of managed to reinforce your personal boundaries.

This was the question.

Can you do this in a narcissistic relationship?

But why I asked the question, there are certain people like Marisa Peir and others that when they hear about narcissism, they say quit the relationship or what you're talking to people who maybe have a transactional marriage, which is 20 years of age. They also have children together and they try to manage their not say their own on clarity, but they try to manage it in their own system.

So I'm not condoning it or condemning it. I just think every situation is distinct. This is why I wanted to understand because it's interesting.

There is an amount of incredible data in your book that helps people navigate the relationship and better understand and forget about the things that are laid around there.

What I mean through this, you have in order for a person to be diagnosed as a narcissist, you have to have the five criteria from the nine.

I hear so often the term narcissist that I think it's mentioned by anyone who had a bad relationship when they themselves maybe they're histrionic or have a certain dependent personality and they cannot establish personal boundaries. And they say, oh, he was a narcissist playing the victim card. Oh, she was.

Maybe the person saying it is actually a narcissist.

And I was curious if you could walk us through the nine criteria that you must meet five of them in order to be actually diagnosed.

The nine criteria are about to be abolished, actually.

The nine criteria first appeared in 1994 in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual Edition 4. Actually, they appeared in Edition 3, but they were modified massively.

And then in the Text revision in 2000.

So the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual Edition 5 on page 767 has an alternative model of narcissism, of narcissistic personality disorder. And this alternative model is the new diagnostic model, which will be in DSM 6.

So there's not much point to talk about the nine criteria because they have been long ago, more than 20 years ago, discredited. And they are not used by serious scholars in the field anymore.

Well over six to 10 years, no one is using them anymore. They've been long discredited because they're wrong.

For example, one of the criteria is that narcissists have no empathy. Today we know that they do.

One of the criteria is that narcissists are envious. Today we know that there are big groups of narcissists who are not envious.

And so on.

So one could say that big parts of the criteria are probably wrong today with current research, including empathy, as narcissists have empathy.

They have a truncated form of empathy. They have a dysfunctional form of empathy.

It's empathy that where the emotional component is inaccessible, so the narcissist cannot access the emotional part of the empathy. It's there by the way, but he cannot access it.

But he has all the other forms of empathy, reflexive and cognitive. You basically realize what can happen as a result of your actions, but you cannot understand how can I abuse you if I have no empathy?

So the narcissist abuses his empathy to scan, to find out your vulnerabilities and your soft spots and your buttons. And he will then use this information to victimize you.

But you need empathy to victimize someone else.

If you have nothing in common, I cannot victimize a cockroach. I called it cold empathy, which is currently being more and more used by getting done others. So cold empathy.

So it's a form of empathy. So we no longer use the ninth grade.

This is history.

And if you want to know if someone online knows what he's talking or she's talking about, whether she has a doctorate or not, if she mentions the ninth criteria, she's 20 years behind the times.

So the alternative model puts emphasis on dimensions, dimensions of personality, for example, the inability to maintain a stable identity, also known as identity disturbance, the need for others, the dependence on others in order to regulate a sense of self worth, the inability to maintain intimacy, the total lack of interest, the total lack of real and true interest in the so-called intimate partner. I call it insignificant other, not significant other, but insignificant other.

So the alternative model is much closer to reality. For example, the alternative model mentions that narcissists can go through periods of depression, which was absolutely I mean, the nine criteria, they tell you that narcissists are always happy. They're always perfectly, it's not true.

Majority of narcissists go through massive depression, especially when they cannot obtain supply.

I'm imagining that if you have a hard time, sorry for interrupting you, but if you have a hard time, let's say, and you don't have the narcissistic supply, I'm imagining that the life crisis seems bigger for the narcissist because you're two types of the two types of the dysphoric problems.

One is narcissistic injury, which is short term. Usually the narcissist is able to overcome it or compensate for it by devaluing the source of the injury. They will say the guy who told me that I'm an idiot is an idiot or the girl who rejected me is stupid and blind. She didn't realize my value, etc.

So that's easy.

What is much more difficult is narcissistic modification.

Narcissistic modification is when the narcissist is shamed and humiliated in public in front of people that he values for some reason, people who can give him supply, for example, or his raw moments.

So when this happens, there is a process of modification, which is a form of decompensation.

The defenses of the narcissist stop, they're inactivated, and he doesn't have the false self of the grandiosity to protect him.

So he becomes a borderline in effect.

But this is always followed by rage?

No, rage is following injury. Injuries are followed by rage. Mortification is followed by depression so severe that it is life threatening. The suicidal ideation and so on.

So technically, the narcissist becomes a borderline.

Now, this was first described by Grossstein, who was a scholar of personality.

Grossstein said that children who are traumatized, all of them try to become narcissists.

Narcissism is the best defense against trauma and abuse. The best.

So everyone wants to go for the best.

The child tries to become a narcissist.

But some children fail, and the children who fail become borderlines or co-dependence.

So when the narcissist defenses are removed, he regresses, he goes back, and he goes back to being a borderline in effect. So he becomes suicidal.

He suddenly has access to his emotions, and they overwhelm him. They're dysregulated.

And so it's a very dangerous phase.

But their alternative model is much more human.

For example, the alternative model describes that there are narcissists who are very bad at obtaining supply. And so they are envious, and they are passive aggressive, and so on. And if you want a true picture of narcissism, you would go to the alternative model.

The list that was compiled for the DSM, the nine criterion exploitation, for example, is in the nine criteria.

Some narcissists explode, some don't. Some help, because this is their grandiosity, to say, I'm a more mother Teresa. I'm a moral person.

Look at me. I'm an amazing. I can be your example. Yes, I'm a role model. I'm amazing.

Am I not?

You know?

So these criteria are very primitive, and they reflected the state of knowledge in 2000, which was zero. In 1994, which was zero.

So this is in answer to your question.

One thing that I think of when I think of romantic relationship, it's parable in the Bible with the honey inside the dead lion.

Why do I make it? Maybe it is blunt, but it's Samsung, I think he tastes it. When you taste for the first time the romantic partner, I have the impression that everything is grandiose, like the narcissist amazing.

Does this always happen? Is it a pattern?

Like the face of idealization? Is it always huge? Like you're my soulmate or can it be a bit deflated?

Because this was my sense.

I met several narcissists, which I had no engagement. I had only one relationship with one.

But the thing that united them was this, the sense of soulmate grandiose.

Bigger, bigger than life.

Bigger than life.

But listen what Sam said before.

Narcissists have cold empathy. They know what you need.

And in order to idealize how good they are, how good, what a choice he made by choosing smart woman, beautiful woman, helpful woman, idealize her.

Of course he will be the best lover and attentive and this love bombing and romance, of course.

But until when?

That's the thing.

Let him say his story, but only because many women are saying that.

How come in the beginning?

It was like this.

And now what happened?

That he devalues me. He insults me. He beats me. Sometimes physical. There is emotional abuse, which is worse.

Their triumphing, but they don't understand is whenever narcissist feels that he doesn't get from that idealized woman as much as they feel like they deserve. They deserve. They think they deserve.

But that is another topic.

Co-idealization is an element, of course, but it's a practical element. It's much, much deeper than this.

When the narcissist sees a woman, I'm talking about men and women, although today 50% of diagnosed narcissists are women, actually, the first time in human history. The incidence and prevalence of narcissism among women is increasing much more than among men. Much more.

And the number of psychopathic women is beginning to equal the number of psychopathic men.

And if we add borderline personality disorder, which is a form of secondary psychopathy, there are more psychopathic women than men today.

So the picture is really bad. We're not going to the reason why.

But I will use men and women just for discussions, although the reverse is also true.

The man identifies a woman who has a self-love deficit. She was never able to love herself because she had not been loved unconditionally. She had not been seen or reflected properly. She was not able to develop boundaries, so she doesn't know where she ends and others begin.

So she's, of course, unable to love yourself if you don't have a self.

And when you don't have boundaries, you don't have a self. You have a cloud. You're like in the cloud. Eligible.


Weak self.

So these people, these women have never experienced self-love. Never.

The narcissist provides them with fake, thus self-love. The narcissist comes to such a woman and immediately idealizes her because of the process of co-idealization.

And he does it through love bombing and romaine.

So he idealizes her. And he creates this idealized image.

And then what he does, he shows this idealized image to the woman.

He makes the woman gaze at this idealized image.

And of course, the woman falls in love with her own idealized image.

The women don't fall in love with the narcissist. It's a crucial thing to understand. They fall in love with how the narcissist sees them. They fall in love with the idealization, with the fact that the narcissist is idealizing them. It's intoxicating to be idealized by someone. It's an unprecedented phenomenon because for the first time you're allowed to love yourself and you experience self-love.

But it's your loving, not yourself. You're loving a fake version of yourself, an idealized version.

And so after this, this is becoming addictive. You become addicted to it.

I want to make the question through, sorry to interrupt you, but I heard a specialist pinpointing the idea of peptide addiction.

Oh, I'm sorry?

Peptide addiction, I think they called it.

What you're saying is that you grow with the narcissist.

Please elaborate on this.

I never heard of peptide addiction, but addiction.

So what can I add here?

This is known as process addiction if you're looking for the clinical. This is a process addiction.

For example, what he said that a woman was a narcissist sick and they bond with, and it's easiest for them to bond with insecure women.

What does it mean insecure? In whom?

What I mentioned in the beginning, it's they recognize our weaknesses. All people have weaknesses, not trusting themselves, doubting themselves.

Except me.

Except me, I don't agree. They're unstable. They're not unstable, but they can be stable for something, certain for something.

But there is a like, you know, like ECG, you know, there are no constant.

It's difficult for them to find balance, balance the positive and negative emotions they have. They don't have the need. They stick validation from other people.

If they grew up with narcissistic parents, at least one of them, the narcissistic parents influence creates this trauma bonding.

What you mentioned before, what does it mean? That I was, for example, never validated by my mother that I was doing good. She never said it to me. She never said it. And it was like a cloud over my head that I was not good enough person.

We all seek validation from other people to be a good people. We are accepted in the environment. We are socially accepted. And we destabilize us. They stabilize us.

We need each other to regulate and control our urges, needs and so on.

So when there is a weakness in a person, they are uncertain about many things. They have a question about themselves. And especially if they miss validation from a parent or significant other, then there is much strong, there are many more actually narcissistic tendencies and traits were developed later in life. And if they were not regulated by their peers, teachers, other influences outside the family, then they turn out to be with MPD, narcissistic personality disorder.

What I emotionally, they end up even like psychopaths.

And the thing is, if there is no constant validation, then there is this gap.

But Sam says, a person, I, for example, I don't value myself. I have a low self-esteem. I don't trust myself.

So but I am aware of my senses. So I know how to connect with people. It's easy.

It's like, you know, I want to be needed. I want to be wanted and everything. And I give him the validation part that you're beautiful, that you are clever, that you can do things, that you're that you know how to be independent emotionally and financially.

What is the work of a parent?

It's seen from the eyes of a narcissist because narcissists are successful in especially psychopaths, that they have goals. They have a goal to become billionaires. They will become billionaires. They will step on everything, but they will turn out to be what they really want because of this sustaining their own image. Otherwise, they will not feel that they exist.

So what the the codependent, weak person misses is the so-called strain of a narcissist.

You understand?

So they fit the perfect match.

Narcissists and borderliners are perfect match.

So the narcissist, I say it's pleasant to see someone needs me, wants me, you know, reflected in the eyes of a narcissist. And I'm thankful for that.


The idea of youth and neglect and everything.

Because when I catch myself, loving myself as I was presented and then I say, but it's not me that makes a resonance, dissonance.

And actually they challenge me.

Okay. Me as video.

Okay. They challenge me.

Narcissists challenge me to know more about myself. My needs.

Actually, I am grateful that they are in my life because I need, I have a need to prove my words and I have a need to validate my emotions because I was like.

In the book regarding families, you explained to the parent who is not a narcissist how he or she should act with the child. And you also mentioned that some narcissists, low children and some actually are mesmerized by the idea of having them because it's like an extension of their super ego.

So what would you advise a parent who has the relationship with a narcissist to behave with the child?

The only thing to do is to not be a narcissist. The child needs to see two models.

One model is a narcissistic parent and another alternative model of a healthy, functional, non-narcissistic parent.

When the child grows and child is 18 years old, it's a struggle because for a long period of time, the child will choose the narcissistic parent. And the child will choose a narcissistic parent because there are two phases in personal development which are highly narcissistic.

For example, adolescence. Adolescence is highly narcissistic.

So during adolescence, the child is much more likely to imitate the narcissistic parent to love and to choose the narcissistic parent over the non-narcissistic parent.

And it's very painful.

But after a certain age when the child becomes an adult, in the vast majority of cases, the child usually chooses the non-narcissistic parent and the non-narcissistic personality.

So the parent must be there for the child and demonstrate to the child time and again, regardless of the pain, demonstrate again and again, there is an alternative.

You don't have to be like that. You can behave differently.

Not by criticizing the other parent because this will push the child even more to the other parent.

But just by being yourself, by presenting an alternative, there's nothing else that can be done.

Yes. End of story. All the other advice is non-narcissistic or counterproductive.

And you have to wait.

If you were stupid enough to bring children to the world with a narcissist, this is your punishment. You have to wait and hope for the best.

I'm saying stupid enough to bring a child to the world with a narcissist because the overwhelming vast majority of people realize that something is wrong with a partner on the third date or second date.

And then this lies, this nonsense. He was a good actor. I didn't see it coming.

This is self-deception. People are so terrified of being lonely that they lie to themselves. They know something is wrong and they choose to remain in their relationship. And then they choose a year later to have a child with this monster.

Well then every act has consequences and costs.

Yeah, but more and more addictive to see yourself after so many years that you did not escape through the eyes.

So finally I left myself.

He did so good and you start to develop this.

I have to have a child with this person. Men don't know that.

But this is after I spoke to many women.

I said, how come you choose to have a child with him?

Even after you were physically abused, you knew that he was a psychopath.

Why you choose?

Because now even there are studies if the amygdala is the empathy thing in the brain. If the amygdala is missing in the psychopath.

So why even not to be aware of something like that?

So your child will be might 50 percent right have become psychopaths.

Don't you think about it?

Many women don't because they are more addicted to capture to have like something that will remind them constantly of that love that they had with the narcissist, the cycle, the child.

They will see the child and they will always be reminded how sick some women are.

This is something that I'm telling you from a mother that what she told me.

I love that child. Even if it is a child of a psychopath that he ended up in jail and I don't know if he will be released.

But I see myself as a part.

I remember the good times and the love pumping and everything.

What is it good in it?

He is 40 years old and violent, aggressive.

What to do with such people?

So women really, as some said, turn out to be more narcissistic than men. More narcissistic like, oh, we are abused and this is it. Everyone is a narcissist. Narcissists do the same.

They should blame to others.

So if I was narcissistic, a stranger, you know, I don't want to blame someone else. I would say, why on earth this is happening? And I will ask myself, why do I feel like that? Why women don't do that anymore?

They used to do that. Not anymore. They used to do that.

Not anymore.

I think that the narcissism, as I said in the beginning, it's our choice.

How we process, do we want to learn more about ourselves and self regulate our emotions, validate our emotions? Or we will seek other people to do that for us.

It's a mother's, mother's, only mother's job to teach a child in the formative years to make this difference and to choose.

Yes, as Sam said, give you the option to do everything.

Narcissistic mother or father, doesn't matter. Just to be exposed to experience differences. The child to be given a chance by itself to see and notice differences.

And that is the only thing to prevent in effect narcissism because life experience is life experience. This is learned experience. I mean learned.

And we make and we create new habits. We have our own.

When we start to believe in some rhythm, we become, we have rituals. You know, and these are stabilizing factors. Our beliefs, our routines, stabilize us emotionally. Also we feel much safer and more secure, more protected.

And if any other, no other person, including some parents, nor any partner in life, no friend will do this for you. The times are changing. You have friends, you don't have friends. You can trust them, you can trust them. They are changing also.

The only certainty is your choice. The choices that you decide and you can rely on.

So it's about trusting yourself. So it's more sustainable. And let it hurt less.

I have a question regarding what she said, shifting to friends.

So they normally have followers, not so many friends.

Given that narcissists are people of habit, like they have the ritual, but they seem very hectic from outside. Is it common for each type of narcissist not to lose the circle of friends or the followers, but after he feels intimacy, he feels engulfed and then goes to another circle of followers and so on and so forth.

So have you seen narcissists really developing relationships with other people than the insignificant other two years, like 20 years of following friendship or not? Do they permanently change the background of friends?

No, narcissists do not experience government and anxiety. Government anxiety is borderlines.

They have a conflict between abandonment, anxiety.

The clinical term is separation insecurity. So they have a conflict between separation insecurity and government anxiety. They get close to you because they're afraid that you will abandon them.

But the minute you show love and intimacy, they run away because they're afraid that you will engulf them. You will then get enmeshed.

So this is borderlines, not narcissists. These are children who were not allowed to develop boundaries. They were not allowed to separate from the bottom.

Physical abuse, verbal abuse, sexual abuse is a form of breaching boundaries, but also spoiling the child, using the child as a tool, forcing the child to become a parent, identifying the child. These are all forms of breaching of boundaries, not allowing the child to become an individual.

Separation, individuation.

So narcissists, because they had never had boundaries, are not recognizing the boundaries of others. They have never experienced boundaries firsthand.

So they don't understand boundaries with others.

Consequently, they cannot be friends and they cannot love. Love and friendship, which are very, very similar emotions.

Now we are discovering friendship is a form of love. Actually it is love, only without the sexual context.

And even that is not true all the time.

But love and friendship are founded on boundaries. You cannot love another person if you don't have boundaries.

Because to love another person is to recognize that the other person is not you. To recognize the other person is special, unique, separate from you. Otherwise, how can you love them?

If you don't have boundaries, the only form of love is self-love.

Because you cannot love.

And even when you love another person, you are actually loving yourself.

Because you cannot recognize the separateness of the other person.

So narcissists never have friends and are never capable of loving.

Now when narcissists do, they establish something which I call pathological narcissistic space. It's a physical or digital environment where the narcissist has constant admirers and fans and followers. And this environment can be stable because narcissists have what I call island of stability.

Some narcissists, for example, have stable marriages for 20, 30, 40, 50 years. But they change 40 jobs.

So they are not stable in the workplace, but they are stable in the marriage.

Other narcissists are exactly the opposite. They worked for one company for 40 years, but they had divorced six times.

There's always a locus of stability because the narcissist needs to feel safe somewhere. The locus of stability can be the pathological narcissistic space.

In other words, the narcissist can have a stable set of admirers for 20 years, for 30 years, for 40 years. Same people always admiring him, always adulating him, and he will stick with them for life.

But at the same time, the rest of his life was to be highly chaotic, total mess.

So this is more or less the answer to your question.

In social circles, like not the personal relationship, what I took from, I used to be a model and it was like you mentioned in the book, the situation and narcissism.

It was strange that there were so many projections around me, that what I took from the girls from the agency is that most of them couldn't stand any type of criticism.

So it's like they emulated your, I don't know, the way you felt, but then when you had any type of criticism, they redrew in the safe space somehow.

So any form of criticism was seen as a threat.

And the second thing, I also, I am curious if every narcissist lies, because sometimes they lied with silly stuff that had no significance, didn't help them.

Sometimes the lies made them worse, but I think they gave them short term gratification.

They could outstand this image of omnipotence or like do not seem flawed.

So I have to lie in order to protect my perfect image.

And another thing I saw was the comparison.

So do all narcissists constantly compare themselves?

Well one by one, the first issue you raised is known as introjection.

When the narcissist comes across you and you can be a source of supply, the narcissist takes a photograph of you, a snapshot, and then he internalizes the snapshot.

And from that, and this process is in clinical service known as introjection.

He internalizes the snapshot and then he continues to interact with the snapshot.

Never with you, never with you. You're not relevant anymore.

He continues to interact with the snapshot.

He photoshops the snapshot and this is idealization. He photoshops you, makes you look better and so on.

And then he continues to interact with the snapshot.

The snapshot has a few advantages.

It doesn't talk back. It doesn't criticize. It doesn't disagree. And it never abandons the narcissist.

Narcissists have abandonment anxiety.

So the snapshot is safe. You are not safe. You are not safe because you grow, you change, you evolve, you move, you talk to other people. You can cheat, you can betray.

So you're not safe. It's naturally safe. Just say it. It's naturally safe.

So I said it.

So the minute you criticize, you deviate from the snapshot. The minute you disagree, you step aside from the snapshot. There's a gap opening between you and the snapshot.

The minute you're independent, the minute you make your own choices and decisions, the minute you have your own friends and family, you are deviating from the snapshot. You can no longer be controlled. You're not safe.

So you become a secretary object. You become an enemy.

And the narcissist needs to get rid of you because you are seriously threatening.

And to do this, he devalues you and discards you.

This is the process.

So the second question you asked is about lying.

Psychopaths do.

It's a big confusion online.

Psychopaths lie a lot because they're goal-oriented. Their lies are goal-oriented. They want to accomplish something.

Narcissists rarely lie. What narcissists do is another process which looks a lot like lying, but clinically it's very different. And it's called confabulation.

Narcissists confabulate for two reasons.

To support their grandiosity. It's a part of a fantasy defense. So actually they are fantasizing aloud. The fantasizing aloud, and it sounds like they're lying.

And the second reason they lie is because they have memory gaps. They forget a lot. They have what we call dissociation. So they keep forgetting a lot. And then they are ashamed to admit that they had forgotten because they know everything. They're like, "God, how can it be that they don't know something that would happen to them?"

Narcissists will never say, "I don't remember. I don't know because he's perfect."

So instead the narcissist says, "What could have happened? What should have happened? What's the most reasonable, logical, plausible thing that would happen?"

It's a story that invents a narrative. And then he says, "Ah, well, probably it did happen. I was in point A. Now I'm in point C. Probably there was point B in the middle. Otherwise, how did I get to Z?" And then point B becomes reality.

He defends the confabulation as though it were real.

And if you challenge him, he becomes aggressive. He refuses to admit that he invented the confabulation because he doesn't feel that he invented it. He feels it's real.

So narcissists don't lie. Rarely, of course they lie. Everyone lies. But not as a strategy.

That is psychopaths.

The last thing is comparison.

So narcissists, it is another myth that narcissists need to be the best, the most, the greatest. That's not true.

Narcissists need to be unique. So they can be a unique loser, a unique failure, a unique victim.

Many narcissists will tell you that they are unique victims. And many victims online are actually narcissists, covert narcissists. Their victimhood is their grandiosity. Their grandiosity because there has never been a victim like them. They are the number one victim ever. You could be number one loser. You just need to be number one. You don't have to be the best, the strongest, the most powerful, the richest. No, you can be the poorest man on earth. If you are number one and only sui generis, this is grandiosity.


Now, if you have a question, I'll be here.

Those two masks you mentioned in the book, these are common for all types.

The two masks.

The two masks are what?

I'm sorry. The one that has a very specific racism, like the one that has the child and the second one. The one that has the wound?


But what is the question?

So you can recognize them in each narcissist.

The one that can then.

No, the one that is more typical of cerebral.

The way I tell those Peter Pan, the eternal adolescent is all narcissists. All narcissists are immature, they're childlike, they're infantile, they're regressive. So all narcissists are actually children. Prone to head on his own. Yeah, they're children actually. In old age.

But the wunderkind is unique to the cerebral. The cerebral is a wonder child, you know, wonder body.

What I liked from the book, I think I have just two or three questions left. But one was that I started to recognize some patterns when I read the part with the sexual communicators, the three types. And I recognize some major differences between the three types, which maybe you could shed light on better than me.

Well there are those who go from sex to commitment and those who go from commitment to sex.

And today both styles are very widespread.

So the book needs a revision, because when I had written the book, one of the styles was considered socially acceptable, and the other style was considered dysfunctional.

But today there is a pandemic of emotionless sex. Sex that is totally physiological release, masturbatory sex with the body of your partner. Sex that does not recognize your partner is an autonomous independent entity.

In short, narcissistic sex.

Sex that is auto erotic. Narcissistic sex is about self gratification. Even when you gratify the partner. It's because you want to feel that you are great at sex.

So you have ironically narcissists who ask during the sex.

How many times did you orgasm? Am I not the best you ever had?

So even when there is an interest in the partner, it's totally brand-ish and self centered.

And this I'm saying it's a pandemic.

Because lately in studies like Lisa Wade, Carrie Cohan and many others, we are discovering that the majority, and when I say majority, I mean super majority, 81% of women, for example, majority of people experience only casual sex, only one night stands.

Majority of people nowadays do not experience sex in relationships with any meaningful other. Almost all of them have sex only with strangers.

And in 20% of the time, they don't know the names. So the strangers, the names, not any other detail.

But in the end, 81% of women have exclusively casual sex. 45% of people, men and women had never had a relationship of any kind for any duration.

That's the picture in all of it.

It's a horrifying picture.

I'm guessing pornography and everything, only identity plays a big part in this. Especially with men, and men are becoming much more aggressive.

If you date a man today, you are fully expected to have sex on the first date. And if you don't, he becomes violent and aggressive. And you are a crazy bitch if you don't have sex on the first date.

There is an ethos that sex, even with total strangers, is just fun and games and play. And of course, this is totally nonsensical.

Because sex has huge physiological, hormonal and mental health implications. Even casual sex, even one night stands, 10.

So today, there would be no distinction between sexual communicators and non-sexual communicators. Everything is down the drain. Everything is lost.

We don't have a situation where there's a small minority, let's say 10% or 2% or 20% who are having sex. Everyone. That's it. It's gone.

Intimacy, sex and relationships, sex and the art of life. The art of life is about compromising, about being together, about sharingthis connection is gone, simply gone.

We even have shocking testimonies, for example, Liza Wade conducted studies where young women were saying "I don't have sex with my boyfriend, I love him an internet with him, of course I don't have sex with him". I mean, it's totally... we have new phenomenon with 40% of women, girls under the age of 16, 14%, one in seven, had sex with multiple men simultaneously, usually an average of 10 men simultaneously.

This is known as a train.

Yeah, that's mind-boggling for me, I hope I'm not that old, but it's... yeah, I'm processing the information in real time.

You mentioned that you actually know from the first date, you have a lot of books from The Body Keeps the Score to other books that mention like the bad vibes topic, a thing which I started to sense at the end of my narcissistic relationship. So I explained, because I myself didn't... haven't done the inside work to see the three girls, the mechanisms, which I also had defense mechanisms, and at the end it was so strong that I got to the ER two times just by facing the narcissist in real life.

I actually didn't feel the rage of anything, I felt relief when he went away because I felt so bad.

Do you... what do you think about the bad vibes?

I will let Lydia answer after me.

No, I will. I will let her give her some space after me.

But I... just after that you can describe what you think.

On our first meeting, you felt bad vibes. Yes. It's useful to describe.

Yeah, actually, because I want to know if it's a thing or not.

Yeah, yeah, it is definitely a thing.

The information relevant to making a healthy decision is available within minutes.

The narcissist breaks your... bridges your boundaries, is in your face, makes decisions for you, ignores you as a separate entity, uses you as an extension within the first five minutes. Literally.

You don't want to accept it. You don't want to realize it.

For example, maybe you're lonely. But there's an even deeper reason.

In many cases, this creates parental resonance. You had been exposed to narcissists in your life in the past, upon which you were dependent emotionally, financially, or otherwise.

And so you are coming across a parental figure.

And one of the things that we had documented very widely is that children will never say that the mother is bad, father is bad. The child will say, I'm bad. Something's wrong with me.

So when you come across a parental figure in the form of a narcissist and you get the bad vibes, you will not say something's wrong with him because he's a parent. You will say something must be wrong with me. Why am I reacting like this? Oh, I was depressed. I had bad news for work. I'm in a bad mood. Something's wrong with me.

We call this autoplastic defense.

So you will develop autoplastic neurotic defenses. It will take a long time for you to get rid of these defenses and admit to the truth.

But you have all the information in the first five minutes.

He orders wine for you without asking you. He asks you intrusive questions after you come back from the toilet. He is jealous. He shouts at the waiter, humiliates the taxi driver.

You have all the clues. You have everything you need to know within five minutes.

You are just denying it. You are self-denying. You suspect yourself first. You suspect yourself, but here in the book he mentions the two types, which are actually three types.

You mentioned three terms, interesting, all of them. The MPD by proxy, the sensitized ones and the de-sensitized ones.

So here you can elaborate as you wish.

People who have been repeatedly exposed to narcissistic abuse or to narcissists, it's a little like being exposed to snake venom or to any other toxin. You develop immunity and resistance in some ways. You become desensitized. You become sensitized.

And so these people ironically at the same time would be able to spot a narcissist much more easily, but would have strong defenses. They would lie to themselves more.

The same. The two phenomena.

Now this creates dissonance. This creates immediately dissonance. We call it cognitive dissonance.

On the one hand, you know this person is bad for you. And on the other hand, you deny it.

And so the relationship starts off with the dissonance.

And it leads, the dissonance can be resolved in many ways.

And one of the ways to resolve the dissonance is to deny one of the two parts.

So the preference is to deny that something is wrong with the partner and to auto-plastic defense to blame yourself.

Another way is to say, well, there is a third reason. It's not that something's wrong with him, but he had a bad day. Or his childhood was difficult and I call it malignant optimism. Justifying him somehow.

And a third way is a grandiose narcissistic defense. I can fix him with my love. I will cure him. I will save him.

So this creates very unhealthy dynamics, very dysfunctional dynamics.

Ironically, and that's the problem with narcissism. The more you're exposed to narcissism, the less healthy your reaction will be. Not the more, the less healthy. And more narcissistic you become.

The anymore narcissistic you become. And then you claim that you are a victim. It's not true. You weren't a victim, victim of a narcissist.

He became the abuser.

Yeah, but because you allow it. So you can't blame yourself. You have to...

The lady is touching upon a very important point and that is what I call contagion.

Narcissism is contagious. It causes you, it infects you like a virus. It causes you to become more and more narcissistic.

Now, it's also a defense mechanism because if you are abused, you have two options. You can say I'm helpless. I'm a victim. But who wants that?

Another option is to say, I'm going to become the abuser. And now that I become the abuser, no one will dare to abuse me anymore. I'm doing the abusing for now.

And most victims actually choose the second solution. And just a second, just before in the morning, we were communicating. For a change, we're communicating. And he gave you the example that mostly women, there were less women who are narcissistic. With this pandemic, they become...

This is exactly the reason that women became more narcissistic. They are not 35, but they are 50. I think that even more.

But there is something that is something that I don't like. And that is because women sense the other and they can be more manipulative, more goal orientated.

And since there are no money, there is no work, there are many... The conditions change, they became even more psychopathic.

This is what I noticed as a trend. And I'm devastated.

What Sam gave you a taste of some significant change when a person is alone, and when the person doesn't have stability, where to compare themselves in order to regulate their emotions, have a friend, meet a friend, go out, whatever, some social... Now they are gone.

There was a lockdown. You can see, I felt, and we were discussing, all the fears pop up, all the fears of a human being abandoning fear of death, of being abandoned, being alone.

What on earth will I do with myself? People didn't know how old they were. They were not even aware which color they were in their favor. They didn't know many small things about themselves.

And this self-dead personalization requires self-defense mechanisms and they became narcissists. This is what happened and why the number increased.

I think there's a confluence of two additional social trends.

One is women empowerment. Women were mistreated as slaves effectively for millennia. And now they're being liberated and they don't know what to do with their freedom. It's simple. It's such a new condition.

I don't know if they're bored. They don't know how to do it in a new situation. It's a totally new situation to women. It never happened before. And they have no clue how to behave in this new situation because it's new.

So this is the first thing. And the second thing is the number of women who are refugees from abusive relationships had exploded. Women are now identifying abuse, can put a name to it. And women are now acting to get out of abusive relationships like never before.

So we have like hundreds of millions of women who are refugees from abusive relationships.

But when they go out of the abusive relationship, they say to themselves, never again, I will never be abused again. Now I'm free and emancipated and liberated and powerful and empowered and I will never be abused again.

But because they don't know how to behave with this newfound power and you found freedom, they choose male models. They become men. They say, oh, men abuse me, I will not become a man. So no one will abuse me anymore. And they don't choose good men, hardworking men, loving men. They choose bullies, narcissists and psychopaths as a role model.

So women who are refugees from abusive relationships tend, this is fact by the way, documented by Judith Ferman and many others, they tend to become narcissistic and psychopathic in behavior, at least, maybe not psychologically, but behaviorally, they tend to become narcissists, narcissists and psychopaths.

Exceedingly dangerous. Anyone who is on the dating side claims that today, broken, damaged women and so on are highly narcissistic and psychopathic. Every man is claiming, just go online. And these women are also extremely likely to give up on men at some point. They say, okay, now I'm a defendant, autonomous, I don't need men. I don't need men anymore. I'm going to use them like a sex Tony. That's it. If I need sex, I don't even need sex. And they're lost. They're lost to the gender.

There is a group of men who are reacting the same.

These men consider themselves refugees from abusive relationships. And so these men are together in a manosphere, MGTOW, men going their own way in sales and so on. These are men, these are the mirror image of these women. They regard themselves as refugees from abuse.

And so they now become narcissistic and psychopathic. We have polarization of narcissists, women, narcissists and psychopaths and men, narcissists and psychopaths, giving up on each other, becoming enemies and starting a war. It's absolute war now between men and women.

No, I wanted to c up, but it's okay. I tend to finish something, you know, just for you to put it in a sentence or in one sentence. I don't want to complicate things.

So there is another thing you can notice. If someone complicates the language, the explanation so much, then if most probably 80% is a narcissist, one sentence, simple, keep it simple. It's a clever, it's not grandiose, but clever, smart boy, girl, whatever.

That's true. Narcissists have specific speech patterns. It's amazing. When you say specific speech pattern, do you refer to I, the self-referencing or also?

This is only one. This is pronoun density. Pronoun density is one hallmark of narcissistic speech, but not only. Narcissistic speech is intended to impress, not to communicate. Narcissistic speech obfuscates reality. The main role is to hide reality. Narcissistic speech is, contains a lot of inconsistencies.

So the narcissist can contradict himself in one sentence. He can start with something. Okay. Let's keep it, let's keep it simple. After the conversation, after the conversation, when you ask yourself, what was all this all about? And you don't have an answer, it's for sure. You did not understand the narcissist. It was a narcissistic person.

So, you know, people speak directly. They don't need audience. They don't need to prolong.

Where's the point? Give me the point.

It can be, it can be said in a sentence or two, in one paragraph.

Narcissists will write the Bible out of it. I mean a book, 10 books for one issue and again on the end you will not understand.

Well, the book, your book, some of the one I read, but you have many others I would like in the end.

Who is the editor? Who is this? This is what I wanted to say. This is why you are a perfect match because the book is so well written, so full of information, but it does not make you lose train of the events. Not one second. It's so well composed and met because she edited it.

So it's a joke. It's really what there was. It was also contribution to all these, asked questions.

So I published the book. I opened the website for that, for it, 97, but the frequently asked questions were added and only after two years it was published as a book.

So this is actually the beauty. It's not a narcissist only that wrote it. It's not only that who knows who edited it, but there is a component of other people's needs.

The human element, the human touch. That's why it is, there is also variety. Many subjects are included, reframed, you know, and that's why so many people resonate.

Some elements resonate with different people. There are different topics.

So what is needed for, again, I will say, expose yourself to differences.

So via your experience, you will know, you will know to select.

You were offered a choice, free choice, not by a narcissistic mother or narcissistic husband, your choice.

And that gives value to any person, every person, and it's destabilizing because you went through it.

Just narcissists don't remember what they went through. That's why that is the handicap.

And I don't mind serving as an external disc, memorizing the gaps while he dissociates or what he missed.

But I don't mind, you know, it's not that he is using me and abusing me. He took me to those trips for me to send.

So why not to share?

I'm asking this, why some women that is what I appreciate for he and his owners. And I feel safe and secure.

Actually, I know how he functions. I noticed the signs yesterday. I saw him. I said, Why are you so stressed? You know, he didn't have an answer. He slept over.

And he said, This is what I write, you know, and it was really stressful.

Some summary. But I thought because of my background, that I was the one who did something bad.

Okay, so if you anyone that lives with a narcissist have to have to use the senses, but not to manipulate in order to materialistically, as many women do abuse, because most of the women who complain and who are victims are saying that their husband was jealous.

Well, they were pretty lazy to learn something. And they see at home and acted as housewives and good mothers.

You know, so first, you know, it's important to hear to hear the story and to be a little bit, you know, tactical with everyone with a victim with a narcissist will need to have our ups and downs, right?

But it will be fair, fair. If everyone will have the how you say in the brokerage and good share the best share, you know, communication, and you agree and use you live together without hate.

It'shate. It's a good state concluding statement.

We are at two hours, I'm afraid.

Yeah, we reach the two hour.

I would like in the name of the book in the podcast. And I thank you very much for your time. It was just thank you for having a part of insight.

If you read some book edited by Lydia, you will get an amazing insight into the world of the narcissist. And you also have the frequently asked questions that are from the half of the book, I think, which are amazing that should answer all of your questions.

Are you planning a revised edition? You said we were planning it for a few years already, but no time, no time.

This pandemic really triggered many people. And as I said, all fears, I won't be surprised if there will be a new one.

People are terrified and they feel like they need help every year also for focusing on the new my, my new thinking in philosophy, I call it nothingness. It's a form of a new philosophy.

So I'm less into narcissism and so on. But yes, we should come up with a final edition of Malignant Surf Love and allow all of us to move on somehow.

It's been enough. We've been in, we've been doing this for 26 years.

Thank you very much for your time. Thank you. Thank you. It's kind of you to leave us. Take care there.

All the best. All the best. Thank you.

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

How I Experience My Narcissism: Aware, Not Healed

Sam Vaknin discusses his experience with narcissism, how it has affected his life, and how it has become a part of his identity. He explains that narcissism is a personality disorder that defines the narcissist's waking moments and nocturnal dreams. Despite his self-awareness, Vaknin admits that he is powerless to change his narcissism. The narcissist experiences their life as a long, unpredictable, terrifying, and saddening nightmare.

Narcissism, Demonic Possession as Morality Plays

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses demon possession and its similarities to narcissism, as well as the concept of possession in different religions and cultures. He argues that pathological narcissism is the source of all personality disorders and that narcissists and psychopaths lack empathy and emotions, making them not human in any sense of the word. Vaknin also discusses the false self in narcissists and how it becomes dominant, leading to a loss of identity. He also talks about the structural abnormalities in the brains of individuals with narcissistic personality disorder and the therapist's role in reconstructing a functional self.

lovebombinggroomingLove Bombing and Grooming: In Crosshairs of Narcissists, Sadists, Psychopaths

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the concept of demon possession and its relation to narcissism. He explores the historical and linguistic context of demon possession, comparing it to the vocabulary used in psychiatry. He delves into the psychological traits and behaviors associated with demon possession, drawing parallels to narcissism, psychopathy, and borderline personality disorder. Additionally, he examines the impact of brain injuries on personality disorders and the role of the false self in the narcissist's psyche.

Think You Know Narcissists, Borderlines? Think Again! (With Ruan de Witt)

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the distinction between narcissistic traits and narcissistic personality disorder, emphasizing that narcissism is a coping strategy that has become more common in today's society. He explains that narcissism can manifest differently in men and women and delves into the warning signs of narcissistic behavior in relationships. Vaknin also explores the concept of shared fantasy and trauma bonding in relationships with narcissists, and the impact of narcissistic abuse on individuals. He also touches on the different subtypes of narcissism and the potential for individuals to undergo a process of self-discovery and authenticity. Ultimately, he suggests that narcissism has no cure and that individuals may need to accept or leave the situation.

NPD Narcissist, Or Merely Narcissistic Sick, Or Just A Hole

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the thorny issue of narcissism, distinguishing between narcissistic traits and narcissistic personality disorder. He provides insights into the rarity of NPD and the rise of diagnosed primary psychopathic women. He also delves into the DSM-5 criteria for NPD and the historical context of narcissism in society.

Narcissist Needs to Break Your Spirit (Narcabuse TV on IGTV)

Sam Vaknin discusses his personal journey with narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), his role in developing the language and understanding of narcissism, and the impact of his work on society. He explains that in 1995, he invented a new language to describe the internal dynamics of narcissism due to a lack of existing literature or terminology. Vaknin's work has been pioneering in the field, and he has coined many terms that are widely used today. He also discusses the difference between narcissistic style, narcissistic personality disorder, and malignant narcissism, as well as the societal trends that have led to an increase in narcissistic behaviors, especially among the young. Vaknin emphasizes the importance of no contact as the only effective strategy for escaping the damaging effects of a relationship with a narcissist or psychopath. He also touches on various topics such as victimhood, boundaries, addiction, triangulation, gaslighting, and self-destruction.

Bleeding Edge Narcissism Info - see DESCRIPTION (With Conor Ryan, Eyes Wide Open)

In this lecture, Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the complexities of pathological narcissism, including the debate over what constitutes a narcissist and the differences between overt and covert narcissism. He emphasizes the importance of reconciling the views of clinicians and theoreticians and highlights the fluidity and complexity of personality disorders. Vaknin also addresses the contagious nature of narcissism and the challenges of managing and healing from narcissistic abuse. He provides insights into the body language and manipulative tactics of narcissists and offers strategies for dealing with them. Additionally, he delves into the ethical considerations of victimhood and the potential for change in narcissistic individuals.

Psychopathic Narcissism is Our Destiny and Destination (Obsidian Radio)

Dr. Sam Vaknin, an expert on narcissism, discusses various aspects of narcissistic behavior and its impact on society. He explains that narcissism has both healthy and pathological manifestations, with pathological narcissism being an addiction to attention and validation from others. Vaknin suggests that narcissism may be a post-traumatic condition linked to childhood abuse and trauma. He also discusses the role of narcissism in technology, politics, and relationships, proposing that it is a pervasive force shaping modern life. Additionally, Vaknin touches on the historical and social dynamics of African Americans, victimhood as an industry, and the future of gender roles, predicting an increase in female dominance due to societal and economic changes.

Manipulate the Narcissist and Live to Tell About It? (Lecture in Budapest)

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the manipulation of narcissists, the prevalence of narcissistic traits in society, and the impact of aggression on children. He emphasizes that the only effective way to deal with a narcissist is to go no contact, as staying in contact can lead to adopting narcissistic behaviors oneself. He notes that narcissism is on a spectrum, with healthy narcissism at one end and narcissistic personality disorder at the other. Vaknin also observes that narcissism and psychopathy are becoming more socially accepted and even encouraged in certain contexts. He mentions that narcissists can recognize each other but not psychopaths, and that psychopaths prey on narcissists. Lastly, he discusses the impact of aggression on children, stating that witnessing or experiencing physical or sexual aggression can lead to destructive or self-destructive behavior, while verbal aggression tends to perpetuate verbal abuse within the family structure.

Narcissism - Quo Vadis? (with Anwesh Satpathy)

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the differences between narcissism, narcissistic style, and narcissistic personality disorder. He explains that narcissism is a natural developmental stage but can become pathological if it persists into adulthood. He also touches on the fluidity of cluster B personality disorders and the potential for a unified model of personality disorder. Vaknin criticizes the field of psychology, calling it a pseudoscience, and discusses the impact of social media on society, advocating for regulation of technology but not content. He also reflects on the role of elites in society and the potential for a society without elites.

Transcripts Copyright © Sam Vaknin 2010-2024, under license to William DeGraaf
Website Copyright © William DeGraaf 2022-2024
Get it on Google Play
Privacy policy