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When YOU Discard the Narcissist FIRST

Uploaded 8/18/2023, approx. 18 minute read

What is the only thing more rare than a narcissist with empathy?

It is a Sam Vaknin video shorter than three hours.

Today is the day you have been waiting for.

A short, relatively short Sam Vaknin video.

I can see in the audience people tearing up, hugging, praying to their gods, sacrificing cattle as a token of gratitude.

Yes, the day is upon us and I've heard your cries and I, as any benevolent god would do, am responding.

Today we are going to discuss what happens to the poor narcissist when you are the one who discards him before he has a chance to devalue and discard you.

And who is better to answer this question than Sam Vaknin, the author of Malignant Self-Love: Narcissism Revisited, a former visiting professor of psychology, a current member of the faculty of CEAPS and the list is long.

Okay, let's get straight to the point if we want to keep this one under one hour.

When you discard the narcissist, when you are the one who puts an end to the shared fantasy before the narcissist has had a chance to convert you into a persecutory object in his mind, before he got the chance to devalue you and discard you on his own terms, this of course leads to narcissistic injury.

If you put an end to the relationship, if you break up and you discard the narcissist publicly in a way that involves humiliation and shame, for example, if you pick up another guy in public in front of the narcissist's peers and venture into the night with him, something that has happened to me quite a few times, then this results in mortification.

So the outcomes of your initiative to discard the narcissist could be either a narcissistic injury or narcissistic mortification.

Now these are two totally separate things psychodynamically.

Narcissistic injury provokes the false self to overreact. Grandiosity is enhanced, it's as if the narcissist closes ranks and tries to compensate for the injury with rage, rage that renders him in his own eyes omnipotent and godlike to be feared and avoided and so on and so forth. This is injury.

Mortification on the other hand has much more long lasting effects and much more devastating ones.

The narcissist's false self is deactivated and disabled. Narcissist's decompensates.

In other words, his defenses are no longer able to shield him from reality. His grandiosity suffers a major blow.

Cognitive distortion no longer works. Reality intrudes.

The breakup, the discard, the humiliation, the public humiliation, the shame erupt and they could be life threatening.

Now I've seen all kinds of self-styled experts online with and without academic degrees conflating and confusing narcissistic injury, narcissistic collapse and narcissistic mortification. They are not the same and they don't have the same outcomes.

So you've caused injury if the breakup was in private or you've caused mortification if you broke up with him in public in a humiliating and shaming way and then what happens?

The self-fantasy is put on hold of course because you're out. You've made it very clear that you will not conform to the snapshot, to the internal object in the narcissist's mind that represents you and that is essentially idealized and has become a maternal figure. You have resigned. You have given notice. I'm out of here. I'm bailing out and no longer participating in your charade.

That minute you're converted.

In the narcissist's mind he begins to perceive you as a rejecting and frustrating mother. A maternal figure which is the exact equivalent, a replica and a clone of his real mother, the original mother which wouldn't let him separate and individuate and of course because you had become his real mother by rejecting him and discarding him, this re-traumatizes him.

He goes through the original early childhood trauma again and he perceives you as an abuser.

The original trauma had been caused by a dead mother, a mother who was absent or selfish or instrumentalizing or parentifying, a mother who mistreated the child.

So it's been traumatic.

When you discard the narcissist you step into the shoes of his original mother, his real biological mother who had rejected him and she did this, she rejected him by abusing him and so you become an abuser in the narcissist's mind.

It is also known as the secretary object and then the narcissist as I mentioned compensates and some narcissist act out.

They become essentially psychodynamically, they become borderlines.

No longer in possession of narcissistic defenses against their overwhelming emotions, they emotionally dysregulate with negative affectivity.

In other words their negative emotions take over especially anger, fear, envy and so on and then they act out. They do something crazy, they crazy make, they do something crazy, reckless, defiant, something very hurtful and harmful and often criminal.

So discarding the narcissist before he has had a chance to devalue you might lead the narcissist, some narcissist not all, might lead the narcissist especially if the discard was by way of mortification, might lead such a narcissist to act out and to seek to harm you, revenge or some other way.

In monkeys the numerous strategies smear campaign, the numerous strategies the narcissist have at their disposal when they try to harm someone.

The narcissist dissociates on this, it is too difficult to bear, it's too hard on him.

The re-traumatization is one inch removed from disintegration and a psychotic break to protect himself, to shield himself from the outcomes of your discard, the narcissist dissociates and is likely to forget amnesia, is likely to forget a lot of the things he is likely to do.

So the narcissist would be very surprised if you were to confront him with some of the things he has done.

And so the narcissist essentially, if you want to understand the narcissist following a discard essentially, it's a borderline.

So you would do well to watch the videos in my borderline personality disorder playlist on this channel.


So this is the first reaction, you're an enemy, you're a replica or a clone of his original mother, you rejected him, you frustrated him, you re-traumatized him, all his defenses crumble, he decompensates, sometimes he acts out in a crazy way in order to harm you, exact revenge and restore justice in his eyes.

He tends to dissociate a lot of this and if it's injury his grandiosity is heightened, in the case of narcissistic injury, his grandiosity is heightened and leads to narcissistic rage. If it's narcissistic mortification he will, he's likely to withdraw, regroup and then choose one of two solutions which I will discuss in a minute.


In the meantime another dynamic that happens is that the narcissist experiences separation insecurity, also known as abandonment anxiety.

Within the shared fantasy you are a maternal figure and even if a shared fantasy is five days old you're still a maternal figure, even in a one night stand you're a maternal figure.

So having discarded the narcissist, especially if you've done this in public and in a shaming way, a way that puts him down and hurts him in public, this leads to an overwhelming sense of abandonment and separation, extreme insecurity, extreme anxiety, uncontrollable, overwhelming, drowning again, very very akin, very similar to borderline personality disorder.

The narcissist needs to restore object constancy.

The narcissist maintains stable introjects. Introjects to remind you are internal objects, internal voices that represent you in the narcissist's mind.

Now as distinct as opposed to someone with borderline, the narcissist maintains stable introjects.

The borderline cannot, she doesn't have stable introjects, out of sight, out of mind.

The narcissist is exactly the opposite of borderline.

The only real thing, the only real things are the interjects.

The internal objects are the only realities in his life.

But now that you have discarded him there is a mismatch, a discordance, a dissonance between the interject of you, the internal object that represents you in his mind and the real you who has just discarded him.

So by discarding the narcissist you have diverged, you have deviated from your interject in the narcissist's mind, from the internal object that represents you, from your snapshot.

And so this creates what I call interject dissonance.

The only way to resolve an interject dissonance is to hover you or to stalk you, to reintroduce you into the shared fantasy so that you can again conform to the internal object.

This is what I labeled coercive snapshotting.

This is one of the forms of coercive snapshotting.

When you discarded him in private or in public, the narcissist will do everything in his power to bring you back so that the interjects in his mind will be kept whole, will not be damaged and he will not have to alter them.

The only exception is mortification.

Following mortification the narcissist will avoid you.

He will convert your interject into a persecutory object, into an enemy and will never see you again or be in touch with you again.

But in the vast majority of cases discarding the narcissist does not create mortification.

It takes a lot to modify the narcissist.

In the overwhelming number of cases discarding the narcissist creates narcissistic injury and to repair the damaged grandiosity, the narcissist needs you and he needs you in a way that affirms and patriches and confirms the internal object in his mind, the internal object that represents you in his mind.

So this is why narcissists hover.

That's why they stalk you and you should be fully cognizant of this and ready to prepare yourself for these kinds of behaviors.


So again, a recap.

You have rejected the narcissist, you have discarded him before he had a chance to devalue you.

That means separation and individuation is incomplete because you are a maternal figure, you're a mother and again there's a failure of separation and individuation exactly like his original mother.

You have rejected him, you frustrated him, you've re-traumatized him, you've traumatized him.

So this creates narcissistic injury or mortification.

He feels abundant, he develops abandonment, anxiety and he wants you back in his life in order to mitigate or ameliorate the anxiety and to merge you again with the internal object that represents you in his mind.

This is the only solution.

In the meantime, the nice narcissist is furiously at work trying to make sense of what has happened.

You see in the narcissist's mind, he's not an abuser, he's not coercive, he's a nice guy, he's helpful, he's loving, he's caring, he's attentive, he's compassionate.

Yeah, he may engage in tough love but that's because he loves you.

The narcissist's mind is enmeshed and immersed in the shared fantasy and a fantasy is a fantasy, it's divorced from reality.

So the narcissist appraisal of your relationship, the way he sees your relationship is dramatically different to the way you see the relationship.

In his mind, having been discarded his betrayal, you've betrayed him.

By discarding him, you have stabbed him in the back.

You've betrayed him, especially if you went away with another man.

So he has to make sense of this.

He feels extreme injustice, he feels that he has been mistreated, he is the one who's been abused and victimized and this of course challenges his perception of himself as invulnerable, immune to the consequences of his actions, godlike, above everything, above it all, above the fray, untouchable and strong and resilient.

So here you are with a single act of discarding him, you've shattered the house of cards which is the narcissist's self image and self perception and he needs to reframe.

He needs to reframe what has happened and there are two ways of reframing.

One is known as internal solution and one is known as external solution.

In the internal solution, the narcissist convinces himself that he is the one who initiated the discard.

He pushed you to discard him, he manipulated you into breaking up. He is the one who has brainwashed you and entrained you and controlled you and brought on this consequence, this behavioral consequence.

So whatever you do, whatever you may do, whatever you may have done, it's all the narcissist doing.

This is a grandiose defense, the internal solution is a grandiose defense.

Yeah, she discarded me, yeah she broke up with me, yeah she went away with another guy, yeah she humiliated me and shamed me in public by doing this or something else but I made her do it.

She was just a robot, she was an extension. She was at my beck and call, she was under my control.

I am the one who caused all this to happen. It's the godlike, I'm god, it's a godlike defense.

So that's the internal solution.

The external solution is she is evil, she is bad, she is malicious, she did this on purpose, she would do it to anyone and so that's the way she is, she is corrupt.

That's the external solution.

The external solution is persecretary.

I am all good, says the narcissist and she is all bad.

The act of discard therefore is a badge of honor.

Because I'm all good, this all bad person couldn't be with me.

The very fact that I've been discarded by her just goes to show how decrepit and evil and malevolent and wicked she is because I'm a good partner and a good person.

So the breakup is all for the better. The discard is proof of my virtue, of the high moral ground that I occupy.

So it's a badge of honor.

I can go around telling people, wow, I had this horrible partner who's been abusive, who's been malevolent and malicious and luckily she just walked away.

So these are the two ways that the narcissist reframes your discard.

And he is discarded by you. He goes around saying, I made her do it, therefore I'm in control.

Or he goes around saying she was evil, she is bad, there's nothing to regret. I should be grateful that she has walked away. I should be grateful that she broke up with me.

Still the narcissist goes through stages of grief and mourning, but not for you, not for the intimate partner, for the shared fantasy.

The narcissist invests ordinate amounts of emotional energy, affectives in the shared fantasy. He constructs it. He works on the details. He keeps reliving, living and reliving it. He keeps imagining. He keeps hoping. He keeps daydreaming.

And then you just walk away and you just discard him. You just put an end to it.

Crucially, suddenly, abruptly, mercilessly, callously, ruthlessly, the shared fantasy is done and done in mid life.

And there's a lot of mourning and grief involved. The mourning and the grief motivate the narcissist to find a substitution for you, substitute for you, to replace you ASAP.

Now there are two types of replacement, isomorphic replacement and dissimilar replacement.

Some narcissist would go around looking for someone who is your copy. Your replica resembles you physically, resembles you emotionally, resembles you as far as your cultural background, societal background, ethnic background.

Another version of you.

So this is the isomorphic replacement.

Other narcissist would opt for the exact opposite of you. So they would go for an intimate partner who is not like you in any way, shape or form, who is not even remotely reminiscent of you.

Isomorphic replacement is common with narcissistic injury. Dissimilar replacements are common with mortification.

Of course, when I say he, it's a she, when I say she, it's a he, gender pronouns are interchangeable.

And another caveat, everything I say here is about intimate relationships, but it applies to friendships, it applies to workplaces, it applies to church and other collectives.

The narcissist relates to the world only via a shared fantasy. The narcissist converts everything into a shared fantasy.

And so everything I've described here applies perfectly to having been discarded by a friend, not by an intimate partner.


Okay. I will continue.

Faced with the grief in the morning for the stalled, frozen shared fantasy, the narcissist needs to complete the stages.

So he looks for a substitute or replacement.

And once he has found the replacement, he completes the disrupted shared fantasy.

And this is what is known as repetition, compulsion. It simply goes through the phases that are left.

Remember when you are the one to discard the narcissist, the narcissist is still stuck in the idealization phase.

So it's easy for him to transition to another intimate partner or friend or whatever, and continue from the idealization phase.

The narcissist love bombing of you has created in his mind a snapshot, an internal object that is photoshopped, idealized.

He just takes this internal object and applies it to a new partner or a new friend or a new colleague, whatever.

He just takes this snapshot, this internal object and applies it to another person.

And then he takes it on from there.

He continues as if nothing has happened.

That's why I keep telling victims of narcissists, you are fungible. You're like so many pieces of rice, grains of rice. You're a commodity. You're interchangeable. It's the internal object that matters.

The external objects come and go. The internal object is forever.

And so there's new content in the internal object, a new partner.

And then the narcissist continues with a new partner where he has stopped with you or where you have stopped and exited.

And hopefully with a new partner, he says to himself, "I will be able to reach the phase of devaluation and discard. I will then have attained separation and individuation from this maternal figure and resolve the early childhood conflict once and for all."

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

Signs Narcissist About to Discard, Devalue You

In a narcissist's mind, the sequence of idealization, discard, and devaluation is reversed compared to their behavior in reality. They idealize their partner, then emotionally discard them in their mind, and finally devalue them to justify the discard. However, in reality, they must devalue their partner before discarding them to keep them around for the devaluation process. This discrepancy occurs because the narcissist needs their partner to be present during the devaluation phase, which wouldn't be possible if they discarded them immediately after idealization.


Deprogram the Narcissist in Your Mind

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Negative Hoovering, Narcissistic Probing: YOU, the Enemy (Persecutory Object)

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Why Narcissist Hates Your Unborn Child in Shared Fantasy

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When Hoovering Fails, Narcissist Fakes

The text discusses the narcissist's reaction when someone refuses to conform to their idealized image. When rejected, the narcissist experiences cognitive dissonance and resolves it by rewriting history and reality. They re-idealize the rejected person and then devalue them if they persist in rejecting the narcissist. The narcissist's internal representation of the rejected person persists in their mind, and they dedicate their life to forcing others to conform to this idealized image.


Why Narcissist Can't Get You Out of His Mind? (Introject Constancy)

Narcissists use splitting as a defense mechanism, which involves seeing themselves as all good and others as all bad. They idealize their partner, but then need to discard them to separate from their original mother. To do this, they devalue their partner by taking the idealized snapshot of them and imbuing it with negative qualities. However, they cannot get rid of the internal object, causing them to devalue and discard their partner in reality. This is due to introject constancy, where the narcissist creates internal objects that are constant and reliable, unlike external objects.


Golden Child and Scapegoat Black Sheep: Narcissistic Parent's Projected Splitting

Narcissistic parents often cultivate their children as sources of narcissistic supply, with the golden child being idolized and the scapegoat child being neglected and even abused. This discriminatory behavior is due to the narcissistic parent's projected splitting, which involves the inability to integrate contradictory qualities of the same object into a coherent picture. The narcissistic parent splits their personality into good and bad traits and projects the good aspects onto the golden child while projecting the bad aspects onto the scapegoat child. This pattern of behavior becomes lifelong and can lead to emotional incest and even outright incest.

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