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Narcissist Devalues, Discards What He Craves Most: Shared Fantasy as Reaction Formation

Uploaded 2/24/2024, approx. 31 minute read

Don't you just adore global warming?

It's February and I'm wearing a t-shirt.

A grey t-shirt of all colours.

Thank you climate change and a proper climate change.

Today we are going to discuss the narcissist shared fantasy.

What else?

Shared fantasy as reaction formation.

Stay for the ride.

My name is Sam Bakhnin.

I'm the author of Malignant Self-Love, Narcissism Revisited in the Grey Eminence behind Narcissistic Abuse.

I'm a former visiting professor of psychology and currently on the faculty of CEAPs.

Throughout this video gender pronouns are interchangeable.

He, she, her, his etc etc.

The reason?

Women have finally made it.

Half of all narcissists are women.

So the Narcissist Shared Fantasy is a form of reaction formation.

Why is that?

Because he ends up devaluing and discarding the very thing he craves most.

The narcissist is conditioned as a child to expect to be loved only subject to his performance.

The child was expected to suspend his self, his nascent boundaries, his need to separate, his need to become an individual and to acquire personhood.

The child was supposed to vanish or disappear into the maternal figure, later the paternal figure, into the parental figures.

The child was expected to merge and fuse with him and become an extension and an instrument.

The child was objectified, instrumentalized and parentified.

So the child learned to dispense with what he craved most because craving, desiring something is a sign of an independent mind.

The hallmark of an individuality.

So the child has learned that to express oneself, to desire something, to pursue something, to be interested in anything, to crave anything.

These are bad things.

These are no-no's.

These kind of proclivities are going to displease father and mother.

The child learned to not be, in essence, the art of absence rather than of presence.

The child suspended itself.

Initially what the child craved most was unconditional love and acceptance from a maternal figure.

Yes, with a dose of idealization, with a dash of forgiveness.

And this maternal love was not forthcoming.

It was conditioned on performance.

And what performance?

Not being.

The child learned to associate being seen with not existing.

Whereas healthy people, normal people, learn to associate being seen with existence.

The child has learned to associate this kind of child who grew up in a dysfunctional family with a dead mother and a dysfunctional father.

This kind of child learns to be seen by not being.

To be seen is an absence because absence is not threatening to the parental figures.

Absence is not going to piss them off.

Absence is going to prevent abandonment.

You can't abandon an emptiness.

So the child has learned to suppress, to repress, to deny, to get rid of his desires, his wishes, his dreams, his hopes, his fantasies, his cravings, things he wanted.

He learned to ignore all these.

He could, in his side, bury them deep together with his emotions.

And this is a great description of what is known in psychoanalytic literature as reaction formation.

In psychoanalytic theory, reaction formation is a defense mechanism in which unacceptable or threatening impulses are denied.

They are replaced in consciousness with their exact opposite.

So if you desire something very much, even unconsciously, and you can't have it, or having it will make you lose your mother's love, then you would deny this desire.

You would suppress this craving, and you would replace them with the exact opposite of not craving, not desiring.

By extension, not being.

The narcissist's absence is his reaction formation to his existence, because his existence was perceived by the parental figures as something bad.

This is the bad object.

The narcissist's existence as a child was perceived by the parental figures as a challenge, as subversive, as evil, as sinful, as wrong.

The child has learned to bury his existence and replace it with the exact opposite, with absence, which is exactly what the mechanism underlines reaction formation.

So for example, in typical reaction formation, if you are a latent homosexual, you would become homophobic.

If you have an unconscious prejudice, you would preach tolerance.

You to deny feelings of rejection, you may become overindulgent with someone.

And through the symbolic relationship between the unconscious wish and its conscious opposite, the outward behavior provides a disguised outlet for the tendencies that it seems to oppose.

So reaction formation is a particular form of defense mechanism in which the aim of an instinctual drive, for example, a negative drive to destroy or to mess up, a positive drive to love, to merge, to be loved, also known as sex, errors.

So the aim of an instinctual drive is transformed in Freud's model.

This is at the behest of the superego.

But the aim is transformed into the exact opposite.

And the resulting change is generalized over the ego's attitude towards all objects in external reality.

So whereas the narcissistic child learns to suppress his independence, his budding personal autonomy, his agency, his boundaries, learns to suppress and deny and ignore and neglect his wishes and needs and dreams with regards to his vis-a-vis his mother and later father.

As this child grows up, he learns to do the exact same thing with everyone.

Reaction formation, metastasizers, it start off with a single form of denial and substitution.

Denial of the craving, denial of the desire, denial of the urge, denial of the drive and their substitution, their replacement with the exact opposite.

And it starts with one thing.

And then having learned this trick, the child growing up applies it to everyone and everything.

The child becomes a walking, talking, reactive formation.

There is a process of generalization.

Reaction formation leads to definitive change of personality.

The newly formed character traits ensure the once and for all success of repression.

That is Frenkel's work in more or less the mid 1940s.

Frenkel was a student of Freud.

Reaction formation should be distinguished though from three related defense mechanisms.

One is known as undoing.

It's a relationship, undoing is like a bigger rendition of reaction formation.

Undoing reverses temporary increases in impulses.

So whereas reaction formation is a nuclear weapon, it devastates the entire landscape and changes it unrecognizably and irretrievably.

Undoing is reaction formation light.

It does the same to specific impulses and specific moments.

Displacement is also different to reaction formation.

In reaction formation, it is the instinctual aim that is changed.

While in displacement, it is the object of that aim that is replaced.

Finally sublimation.

Behaviors that result from sublimation are devoid of instinctual quality.

They are not pressured, they are rigid, they are emotional.

Whereas behaviors that are caused by reaction formations do have this quality, instinctual quality.

And so when Salman Rushdie talks about pitiless hospitality or Jordan Peterson mentions narcissistic compassion, they are actually talking about reaction formation.

It's one instinctual manifestation, one expression of an urge or a drive or an instinct, substitutes for the original drive or instinct or urge or craving or desire.

It's a substitution process.

It's a make-believe thing.

I am not really homosexual.

I hate homosexuals.

So by substituting the drive or the instinct or the wish or the desire or whatever to be homosexual, substituting for it with hatred of homosexuals, it compensates for the internal rejection for the shame and the guilt over the original instinct.

Similarly with the narcissistic child.

The narcissistic child wants to love mother and wants to be loved by mother.

He desires her, at least psychologically and according to Freud also sexually and so on.

So when this child is rejected, when the mother's love is conditioned on performance, mainly on the child not separating from her, not becoming independent, not becoming autonomous, not gaining agency.

When these are the mother's conditions for loving the child, the child learns to suppress or suspend itself in order to gain the maternal love.

In this self suspension, self negation, self defeat, self destructiveness, self trashing, self annihilation, self loathing, self rejection become lifelong features.

However, this is highly uncomfortable.

How can one survive with self loathing and self rejection and self destructiveness on such a massive scale by compensating for these and the compensation is known as pathological narcissism.


Now it all starts with six according to Freud, reaction formation and sexuality.

Reaction formation is the cathartic transformation of an impulse that causes intra psychic conflict, an impulse that is dissonant, that causes ego destiny.

You have an impulse, you have a drive, you want to do something and it creates unease and discomfort.

Maybe your conscience is acting out telling you this is wrong, don't do this.

Maybe your ego is alerting you and telling you if you were to do this, the consequences would be dire.

So don't do this.

Whichever the case may be, there is inner turmoil, there is conflict, there is unease.

And so reaction formation is a transformation of this in a cathartic way.

And the effect associated with the original impulse is also reversed.

So for example, if the original impulse is to love, the reaction formation would be to hate.

And similarly with the narcissistic child, the core issue is the child is not seen and is not loved.

And of course the reactive formative, the reaction formation to this is to be seen compulsively to demand attention, to be addicted to attention and to be loved unconditionally within a shared fantasy by a maternal figure.

Now you understand that the shared fantasy is reaction formation writ large.

The catharsis, because when you engage in reaction formation, there's a good feeling, elation, egosyntony, feeling comfortable with yourself, proud of yourself.

So this catharsis allows the ego to defend against the impulse, the original impulse, which has been, impulse that's been frustrated or perceived as forbidden or led to rejection and pain and hurt.

Whichever the case may be, the ego feels that it has to defend against this impulse because it leads to bad outcomes.

And so the catharsis allows the ego to defend against the original impulse without directly experiencing the adverse consequences associated with the original impulse.

In other words, it's a form, reaction formation is a form of self-deception and elaborate fantasy based in my view, self-deception.

Whereas the ego is confronted with an ostensible reality, which is fake, but the ego doesn't know it's fake and it's much more comfortable as far as the ego is concerned.

The ego can work with this faked version of the individual much better than it can with the original impulse.

So there's a preference for the fake version.

Freud first described reaction formation in his three essays on the theory of sexuality, 1905.

In this work, he discussed the nature and characteristics of the libido, the life instinct or part of which is the sexual instinct, the deviations of the libido and the mental forces that control sexual instincts.

It is within the context of describing the mental functions that impede libido energy that Freud first mentions reaction formation.

Freud postulated, he suggested that barriers that restrict the flaws of the sexual instinct, he considered the sexual instinct as some kind of river, a stream, you know, flow.

So there are barriers that somehow impede this constant regular flow.

And so these barriers are constructed during the period of sexual latency of childhood when sexuality is not manifest, is not expressed.

And these barriers may include disgust, feelings of shame, claims of aesthetic, moral ideals and so on and so forth.

They are all barriers to free, unbridled, happy, joyful sexuality, according to Freud.

Freud rather suggested that it is true reacting impulses.

Now we call it reaction formation.

Reacting impulses of sexual instincts that these barriers are built up.

Rather than paraphrase Freud, let me just quote him actually.

He wrote, "On the one hand, it would seem the sexual impulses cannot be utilized during these years of childhood, since the reproductive function has been deferred.

On the other hand, these impulses would seem in themselves to be perverse, given, that is to arise from erotogenic zones and to derive their activity from instincts which in view of the direction of the subject development can only arouse unpleasurable feelings.

They consequently evoke opposing mental forces, reacting impulses, which in order to suppress this unpleasure effectively build up the mental dams that I've already mentioned, disgust, shame and morality." In another work three years later titled "Character and Anal Erotism," Freud elaborated his concept of reaction formation in relation to character formation.

Freud described an orderly, parsimonious and obstinate character traits as originating in the conflicts that surround psychosexual development leading up to the latency period.

That's why we use the phrase "anal character." Freud stated that these traits develop as a result of erotic fixation.

It is within the context of discussing erotic fixation that Freud discussed reaction formation.

So, it all started with Freud's theory of sexuality, where Freud described a succession of psychosexual, erotogenic zones in the body and postulated that excitation coming from these bodily parts is partially channeled into libidinal energy and partially deflected from sexual aims.

Anal eroticism particularly leads to the development of the character traits of ordinarous, orderliness, parsimony, a bit obsessive compulsivity and obstinacy.

They are counter forces, said Freud.


Today we call them reaction formations.

Again let me quote him.

He says, "During the period of life which may be called the period of sexual latency – childhood – reaction formations are actually formed at the expense of the excitations proceeding from the erotogenic zones.

It is therefore plausible to suppose that these character traits – traits of ordinarous, orderliness, parsimony, obstinacy, Hercule Poirot – these character traits which are so prominent in people who were firstly anal erotics are to be regarded as the first and most constant result of anal eroticism."

So that's a primitive example of reaction formation.

Today we no longer subscribe to Freud's views about psychosexual development.

But it's an interesting concept. Freud says the anal part gives rise to sexual arousal in the child.

The child resents and rejects this.

And instead what the child does, the child comes with moral, morally positive, socially accepted manifestations of anal eroticism such as orderliness, parsimony and stubbornness.

They are actually manifestations of anal erotism but they are not perceived as such.

They substitute for the original impulse to enjoy anal eroticism.

And this is an example of reaction formation.

So someone who is too orderly, too compulsive, too neat and tidy, too parsimonious, too obstinate – this kind of person – is simply into anal sex but is denying it, is substituting for it with these traits.

And so in both works, 3S's of the theory of sexuality and character and anal erotism, reaction formation is tied to the latency period of sexuality and to the redirection of sexual drive during the latency period.

It's very interesting.

What Freud is saying actually is that reaction formation is an infantile defense mechanism.

We know of other infantile primitive defense mechanisms such as splitting or projection.

And so is there a link between reaction formation, splitting and projection?

I think so actually.

I think reaction formation is actually a hybrid of splitting and projection.

What happens is the child rejects a part of him that the child considers shameful.

This is self-rejection.

But why does the child reject a part of himself?

Because the mother does.

The child internalizes the mother's gaze and the mother's attitude, which is conditional love.

And so what happens is the child is mistreated by the mother.

The child is abused.

The child is traumatized.

But the child cannot say that mother is bad.

What the child does, he splits.

Mother is all good.

I am all bad.

And so when the child does this, he develops a bad object.

Mother is an angel.

Mother is never wrong.

If she is rejecting me, if she is not loving me, it's because I'm not lovable.

I'm unworthy of her love.

I'm stupid.

I'm ugly.

I'm evil.

Something's wrong with me.

This is the bad object.

The splitting leads to the creation of the formation of a bad object.

But no one can survive with a bad object.

It's intolerable.

So the child projects the bad object, externalizes it, and becomes, by doing so, the opposite of the bad object.

This is projection.

By getting rid of the bad object, symbolically attributing it to other people, or the world at large, the child purges itself.

He becomes clean.

He cleanses himself, ritually almost, and he becomes all good.

And so this act of splitting and then rejection of the split part, the bad object, is a good description of, captures the essence of reaction formation.

It's exactly what happens.

I consider reaction formation, therefore, a secondary defense mechanism comprised essentially of splitting and projection.

Help me out here.

Okay, Shoshani.

It was Freud's daughter, Anna, a great child psychologist, who compiled the compendium of defense mechanisms and discussed the various manifestations of defense mechanisms in 1937, but do not underestimate Freud's contribution to the field.

He introduced the concept of defense mechanism.

He created an ontogeny of defense mechanisms, and he postulated that defense mechanisms occur not only along a continuum of psychopathology, but also along a continuum of ego, healthy ego development.

Freud fully understood the enormity and consequentiality of defense mechanisms.

He anticipated the importance that defense mechanisms would play in our understanding of psychopathology.

He wrote, "Further investigations may show that there is an intimate connection between special forms of defense and particular illness, as for instance between repression and hysteria."

That was in 1926, so you could forgive him for using outdated language.

Reaction formation starts with the individual, but as I said, it has metastatic qualities.

It takes over the entire personality, and then via the bridge of object relations, via the transmission mechanism of interpersonal relationships, reaction formation infects society at large.

Let's go back a bit.

Reaction formation refers to an attitude or a character trait that responds to an unconscious, repressed wish or desire by evoking the opposite of such a desire.

So generosity, for example, conceals a voraciousness or greed, hoarding.

Modesty replaces grandiosity or megalomania.

So you have many people online with pseudo-humility, humble brag, and so on.

Kindness or reluctance to engage in conflict aversion mask sadistic tendencies.

Reaction formation is a symptom of psychic conflict.

It's a defense against rejected, against instincts and instinctive reactions that the individual rejects either because the individual internalized society's point of view or because the individual has been exposed to rejection early on in childhood and has learned to internalize this rejection, has learned to say, "I am not lovable. I deserve to be rejected."

So even though reaction formation is a hallmark of various pathologies, it's actually most apparent in cases of obsessional neuroses, as it used to be called.

In his early writings, Freud, again, described the mechanisms in obsessive patience.

He saw clear signs of conflict, of ambivalence, regression from tender to sadistic impulses and back.

And he tried to understand what the heck was going on there.

In 1915, he wrote an essay, "Instincts and Their Viscitudes," and he distinguished between reaction formation and similar concepts, which he called substitute formation, compromise formation.

He said that repression carried out differently in each of these types of formation.

And so, for example, a hostile impulse towards a loved one.

You love someone, but you also hate them.

This is known as ambivalence, right?

So you are sometimes hostile.

You sometimes resent them.

You're angry at them.

You want to hurt them.

You want to harm them, and so on.

This is subject to repression because it's a no-no.

You're not supposed to hurt or to harm the people you love.

And by the way, if someone hurts you and harms you on a regular basis, he doesn't love you, period.

End of story.

So this kind of impulse is repressed, suppressed, deleted, buried.

And it's a result of a regression or the erotic drive, if the person is sexually sadistic and so on, but it's buried and it's repressed.

And the repression usually succeeds.

The contents of the representation vanish.

And the associated effect also disappears.

So the anger, the hatred, the rage, they all disappear because of the repression.

So repression works.

But what if the impulse is too strong?

What if it is overwhelming or dis-regulating?

When these formations come into play, a substitute formation is the modification of the ego through establishment of scruples, moral conscience, voices inside, interjects that tell you, "Don't do it.

Don't do it because it's wrong.

And don't do it because the consequences will be horrible." Reality testing.

So the ego is modified by incorporating morality, but morality is distinct from the symptom.

So there is the impulse, there are the symptoms of the impulse, and then there's morality which suppresses the impulse and consequently the symptoms disappear.

And this is known as compromise formation.

Reaction formation does the same.

It represses the impulse.

But it represses the impulse by fostering and gendering, creating and encouraging and intensifying a counter impulse, an anti-impulse.

If the impulse is plus, reaction formation creates a minus so that when the minus meets the plus, they become zero and the impulse is gone.

So although conceptually and chronologically distinct, reaction formation and substitute formation are different things, they are of course related because all of them deal with the suppression or repression of an instinct, something wrong, something you shouldn't do, or an attempt to change yourself in order to gain some beneficial outcome, mother's love for example.

So the reaction formation is the antithesis, the antithetical choice of a substitution and it has impact on impulses, ambivalence and so on and so forth.

In contrary, to compromise formation, the instinct that is inhibited via reaction formation is not represented anywhere.

In fact, the instinct remains active.

It remains in evidence in various situations.

Even the subject's rigid defense or defensive rigidity, specific contradictions in the reactive stance, they all indicative that the impulse is not dead, it's not been eradicated, it's repressed, it's under lock and key, it's like a volcano about to erupt.

Yet again in three essays of Sexuality in 1905, Freud gave reaction formation this more extended meaning, it's a pathway to sublimation, the instinct is diverted from the aim and this is very socially useful of course.

Society doesn't want you to go around gratifying your urges and needs and drives in an uncivilized manner.

You feel like having sex, you rape someone in the street.

Society doesn't want you to do this.

Society encourages the ego and all the tools at the disposal of the ego including reaction formation which is actually activated by the super ego.

So unlike sublimation however, reaction formation has a different aim.

The instinctual aim is diametrically opposed to the origin.

Reaction formation is a form of elaborate deception.

I'm not X, I'm actually minus X.

Reaction formation does not entirely succeed because it's a deception.

This diversion, the inhibited desire attempts to constantly resurface and reassert itself because reaction formation involves self-deception, it's not reality grounded.

In other words, reaction formation impairs reality testing.

It's a form of self-gas lighting.

Reaction formation as I said becomes a permanent character trait and its significance grows all the time.

Of course people are social agents, they act in society, they interact with each other and what they do, they bring into the game their reactive formations.

These reactions for reaction formations, you infect each other, they infect each other.

It's not just a symptom of a specific pathology, it's deeply involved in socialization.

People use as children, use reaction formation to fit into society as reflected through the gaze and demands of the parental figures.

The parental figures are socialization agents.

The parental figures bring society into the room when the child is growing up and the child adopts social scripts, sexual scripts, behavioral scripts, the child adopts norms, behaviors through the parental guidance of how to act in society.

Here actually the father has a pronounced role more than the mother.

So socialization, reaction formation is a part of socialization.

We become social beings by acquiring permanent character traits, morality and virtues.

But most morality and all virtues are opposed to our instincts and impulses.

The message, the signal that is given by dead parents, metaphorically dead parents is it is a virtue to not exist.

The utmost accomplishment in order to garner love is emptiness, is self suspension, is self denial.

It's an aesthetic kind of view.

The mother of the budding narcissist, the mother of the child who would become narcissist in due time, signals to this child, broadcast to this child the message and it says, "I can't love you as you are.

I love you only when you perform.

I love you only when you suppress your naturality, your drives, your impulses, your wishes, your independence and separation from me.

I don't want you to be a separate entity.

I want you to be a part of me forever.

Symbiosis, womb, matrix, call it what you wish, mother and child forever united.

So the child's morality begins to rely heavily on self negation.

The child forms the conviction that in order to be loved and accepted and liked, not only in the parental cell in the family, but in society at large, he needs to not be himself.

Either as a narcissist, as a false self or as a people pleaser or as a codependent or somehow to not be.

Freud said that a subspecies of sublimation is to be found in suppression by reaction formation which begins during a child's period of latency and continues in favorable cases throughout their own life.

That's when the child is raised by healthy functional parents.

What we describe, said Freud, as a person's character is built up to a considerable extent from the material of sexual excitations and is composed of instincts that have been fixed since childhood of constructions achieved by means of sublimation and of other constructions employed for effectively holding in check perverse impulses which have been recognized as being unutilizable.

The multifariously perverse sexual disposition of childhood can accordingly be regarded as a source of a number of our virtues insofar as through reaction formation it stimulates the development.

When we become moral agents, social members of society and loved by our parents, all this by denying our impulse to exist.

We substitute the impulse to exist with the impulse to be absent, with an impulse to self-negate and this is the mother of all reaction formations.

Reaction formation is not restricted to character or moral virtues.

It includes the intellect, cognitions, even emotions.

The counter-cathexis of the system of conscience organizes a reaction formation, supplies the first repression.

So our conscience is the first form of repression because it represses instincts and drives and urges, whatever.

In another essay, Thoughts for the times of war and death published in 1915, Freud demonstrated how altruism originates from selfishness and compassion comes from cruelty, emanates from cruelty.

Real so-called motives can have the same effect as non-noble motives.

So virtues can have the same effect as vices.

We cannot divine the instinctual life of a subject.

We can only observe behaviour of course.

Now humankind's capacity to reshape instincts, including the selfishness of instincts, is reshape them, remold them, recast them as something else, which is pro-social, communal, sublimated.

This is known as aptitude for culture.

People have un-equal abilities in this sense.

Some people are much more in control, much more self-discipline than others.

Some people take it too far. They become compulsive, obsessive and so on.

But it's a core feature of culture, society and human civilisation.

Instinctual remodeling can more or less be done willingly by the individual, although unconsciously most of the time.

But it can also be brought on by trauma, such as war, trauma, such as upbringing by a dead mother, being raised by a dead mother.

When the individual is at risk, there's reaction formation.

When cultures and societies are at risk, there's reaction formation.

Civility, the capacity to conduct yourself in a way that is not harmful to other people, according to ethical considerations.

These are all reaction formations and when they're subjected to stress and anxiety and trauma and abuse, many of these unravel.

There is a reversion to the instinct.

Remember, reaction formation is the suppression of an impulse, the suppression of an instinct.

Under stress, under trauma, under abusive circumstances, under coercion, sometimes reaction formation unravels.

All the defence mechanisms are subdued.

This is known as decomposition and the individual resorts to the original impulse and instinct, which in many cases is antisocial.

Reaction formation exposes the fragility of morality.

Repressed instincts return with a vengeance, with great intensity, as acts of barbarism and cruelty.

And now you of course understand narcissistic abuse.

Disruptible narcissistic abuse within the shared fantasy is the unraveling of reaction formation.

When the narcissist is confronted by another person, an intimate partner, a good friend, who truly loves it, they don't know how to cope with it. It's very stressful. It's very traumatic. They perceive this as manipulation and abuse. They perceive love as manipulation, manipulative and dangerous. And so they fall apart.

In the compensate, they turn off a switch of the reaction formation. They revert to the original impulse, the original instinct of aggression and cruelty, hence narcissistic abuse.

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Codependents And Narcissists Wooden Puppets And Cruel Puppetmasters

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the story of Pinocchio as a metaphor for the struggles of abused children. He explains that Pinocchio's desire to become human and escape his puppet existence represents a death wish, as abused children often feel they don't exist or are unsure of their own essence. To cope with their abusive environment, these children may become narcissistic, borderline, or codependent, either emulating or merging with their abusive parent. This leads to a life of conflict, power play, and fantasy, as they constantly seek to escape their puppet-like existence.


From Grooming to Discard via Shared Fantasy: Cheat, Mortify, Exit

Professor Sam Vaknin discusses the cycle of relationships with a narcissist, which follows a pattern of five phases: grooming, shared fantasy, interstitial one with two options, mortification or anti-fantasy, and interstitial two. The narcissist creates a shared fantasy to extract sex, supply, and services from their partner, and the shared fantasy allows them to avoid true intimacy and commitment. Cheating is an option for women who want to escape the shared fantasy and create an alternative sanctuary with another man. The fourth phase, the anti-fantasy phase, occurs when the partner tries to transition from the shared fantasy to reality, and the narcissist becomes indecisive and approach avoidant. Mortification is crucial to end the shared fantasy, and the narcissist switches to internal or external mortification

Transcripts Copyright © Sam Vaknin 2010-2024, under license to William DeGraaf
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