My name is Sam Vaknin, and I am the author of Malignant Self-Love, Narcissism Revisited.
Narcissists often frustrate other people. Frustrating one's nearest and dearest has a double advantage. It has the dual advantage of simultaneously satisfying the narcissist's masochistic tendencies and his sadistic urges.
So, two birds with one stone frustrate your nearest and dearest, and you satisfy your masochism and your sadism.
How is that possible?
Well, by withholding love, withholding sex, avoiding intimacy, avoiding the fulfillment of other people's desires and needs, the narcissist torments these people. He taunts them, he tortures them, even as he obstructs his own gratification.
Think about it. If you don't have sex with your wife, you frustrate two people, your wife and yourself.
When you frustrate your wife, you are a sadist. When you frustrate yourself, you are a masochist.
Self-sabotage, self-defeat, self-denial and self-destruction, the martyred victim stance.
All these serve to prevent the forming of attachment and intimacy and the potential for ultimate hurt, ultimate pain as they dissolve.
But self-denial, self-destruction, self-defeat, self-sabotage, all these also buttress the narcissist's sense of superiority, of uniqueness, of omnipotence.
Why is that?
Because only the strongest, only those with a method can overcome and vanquish strong desires, powerful urges, needs, emotions that easily overwhelm lesser mortals.
So by overcoming and vanquishing these desires and urges and emotions, the narcissist proves to himself that he is the strongest, that he is unique.
The narcissist adheres to his idiosyncratic brand of ascetic religion in which he is both God and the worshiper.
The narcissist's inner monologue goes like this.
I reject everything that matters to other people. Everything that is deemed valuable, worthwhile, meaningful and desirable is nothing to me.
And I hold the weaklings who succumb to their emotions and drives. I hold these people in contempt.
Nothing they have or anything they can possess or attain, none of it is of value to me. It is all meaningless and worthless.
So the narcissist devalues the commoners, the hoi polloi, the great unwashed, the average joe, the pedestrian, the routine, the animalistic sex and the socially conformist.
And so self-defeating, self-denying and self-destructive behaviors and choices actually engender narcissistic supply.
Because when you self-deny, when you self-defeat, when you self-destruct, you uphold and demonstrate and prove the superhuman nature of the narcissist. This proves that the narcissist is a superman above humanity and humanity's needs and humanity's emotions and humanity's drives and humanity's desires and humanity's preferences and wishes and priorities is above the free.
He's a bubble. He doesn't need sex. He doesn't need intimacy. He doesn't need other people. He doesn't need society. He doesn't need.
He denies his needs. He denies his drives and urges and desires and wishes.
This self-denial proves to him, demonstrates to him and to others a kind of utter and titanic independence of society, even of nature, because it doesn't need sex, kind of independence of others in interpersonal relationships.
It's a form of counter-dependence. It's a defiance of the world, of the universe, of God, of nature, of himself.
This overcoming, this elevating oneself to a higher plateau, this is the essence of the narcissistic supply.
When narcissistic supply is a short supply, embarking on the path of self-negation is actually an efficacious way, an efficacious shortcut to obtaining and securing narcissistic supply.
At the very least, he draws astounded attention to the narcissist.
Look at him. He is without sex for decades. Look at him. He just turned down the best job imaginable. Look at him. He doesn't need other people.
He abuses and discards them.
There is some shock and awe in observing the narcissist, especially the psychopathic narcissist.
He inspires a kind of intimidation, not to say fear, in others that puts him over and above his audience, makes him a kind of malevolent entity, the type of alien that we all scream at in a good horror movie. The horror movie is the narcissist's life.