My name is Sam Vaknin, and I am the author of Malignant Self-Love, Narcissism Revisited.
This process demands the persistent investment of inordinate amounts of energy and time.
The narcissist appears to be hell-bent, obsessed, smitten and addicted to the pursuit of his sources of supply.
Yet a curious transformation occurs once he has secured and chained his sources.
Once he has shackled them, domesticated them, conditioned them.
The narcissist, often abruptly, suddenly loses all interest.
It is as though, having acquired his sources of supply, the narcissist takes them for granted. He treats them as he would inanimate objects, devoid of will and unable to free themselves from his mesmerizing mental grip.
Many sources of supply, weighed down by the tiring relationship with the narcissist. Many of these sources break loose and escape his venomous influence.
The delusion that the narcissist harbors, that he is in total control, crumbles as the narcissist is abandoned time and again by spouses, maids, friends and colleagues.
But he does not learn a lesson from it.
It is then, when the loss is tangible, that the narcissist regains his former zeal, an erstwhile further. He courts a long-neglected wife. He invests himself in a hated job. The friends spurn colleagues and gulfs with a natural warmth and empathy of offended friends.
It is very common for instance for the narcissist to rediscover the joy of sex with an adulterous partner. It is as though being cheated by his wife or husband rekindles in the narcissist a competitive urge, a possessive streak and a perverted carnal pleasure.
The narcissist professes to be shocked by the untoward behavior of a hitherto faithful spouse, a loyal friend or a patient neighbor.
He says, whatever happened to them? He wonders, what brought this on? Why did his wife cheat on him? Why did his colleagues demand his resignation? Why did his neighbor turn violent all of a sudden?
The narcissist is genuinely puzzled, very much as you would if your personal computer refused to obey your instructions for no good reason.
Fear of impending loss and doom, the narcissist embarks on a charm offensive, parading the most irresistible, brilliant, captivating, titillating, promising and thrilling aspects of his false self.
The aim is to reacquire that which has been forfeited to neglect and indifference, to rebuild relationships ruined by contempt and abuse, and thus to regain the dislaid found of narcissistic supply.
Needless to add that once these targets are reacquired or achieved, the narcissist reverts to all form and goes back to being impatient, abusive, negligent, emotionally absent, indifferent.
Until another round of losses loose and reanimated, the narcissist.
And this is what the narcissist is.
A sad, repetitive automaton, forever imprisoned by his own non-existence, by his need for others and his hatred and loathing of them.
Torn apart by these conflicting emotions, the narcissist appears to be a deranged automatic machine.