How To See Narcissism

     We all grow up in Western society with people around us who have Narcissism. If we don't have a family member who is one, then we should feel very blessed; but there will be one or more somewhere in our lives. A classmate, a teacher, a coach, a family friend, someone at our place of worship, a healthcare person, an auto mechanic, a neighbor, it can be anyone at all. And so we get used to the behavior. When we get used to behaviors, we don't notice that something is wrong until something happens because of it, like the mail carrier showing up with a black eye because her husband, who everyone thought was a great guy, is really a narcissistic abuser who attacks her verbally and physically because he thinks she is having affairs with people on her route; she will lose everything she has worked for all her life just to get away from him. Or when the neighbor loses everything he has to his narcissistic wife, who not only left with another guy, but took the kids with her.
     The abusive person shows themselves in their words and actions, but since we are used to the behavior from others we have known, we tend to dismiss it, even make excuses for it. Often we are completely oblivious, being duped by their innocent, sweet, helpful, charming personality that they show us, or being drawn in to their gossip.
     The N spouse will often tell people what a nightmare of a person his or her spouse is, but so will the spouse of the N, turning to friends for support. The difference between them is this:
When the N spouse is talking about his nightmare partner, he or she is not seeking a solution, or actual help, from the people he is telling this to. He or she is not trying to figure out how to fix it, or asking advice. He or she is not trying to get the other to go to counseling, or trying to figure out how to get away from the abuse. He or she is only talking about the partner in order to paint a negative picture of him or her, and there will be no evaluation of his or her own behavior, and there will be no counseling to find out how he or she is contributing to the situation.
     The N only talks about the other in order to exact an outcome: to be seen as the victim of a crazy or terrible person. NOT to find real solutions to fix the broken relationship.
     The person who is on the receiving end of the "crazy making" will eventually start talking to people outside the relationship, hopefully, in order to get a reality check on their own sanity, and to connect with non-abusive people who honestly have their welfare in mind. They will also be trying to find solutions, gather advice, try to make it work, try to change things, volunteer to help the other, often to their detriment. Yes, they will talk about their partner, venting frustration and anger and fear, but it will be in the vein of seeking solutions, advice, and help.
     The N does not seek help for their own issues, or for the relationship. Or for their partner. They honestly think they are innocent, and that they have no reason to shoulder any blame. Seeking help for any reason translates to admitting fault in their minds, and that is unacceptable. To them, taking part of the blame means taking ALL the blame. They must be righteous and innocent, or they are a pathetic piece of crap. They must be a victim, because to them, there is only victim or perpetrator. Good or bad. Clean or filthy. Strong or weak. Very important or unimportant. Brilliant or stupid. Pure or unclean. Kind of like a severe germ-phobe, they want to be completely sterile, or they feel infected. Their partner, however, is of course "infected" in the N's mind, and that means they will infect the "clean" N. Blame cannot be theirs alone, ever. They can't carry it.
     One pretty common reason for a person with N issues to not be able to see their own behavior is because they have been exposed to a person who was/is very abusive. How does one be the victim of an abuser and be narcissistic/abusive at the same time? This can be where the black and white thinking gets solidified; that other person is bad, I am good because I am not them. So I do not need to take accountability for anything I say or do, because I am not the monster: they are. And so many children of abusive parents grow up without knowing self-responsibility, or true self-reflection and correction. They have become accustomed to looking outside themselves to find the reason for the misery in their lives, and feel that if they turn the mirror on themselves, they will be inviting that same scrutiny and monster-vision from others. As long as they are a legitimate victim of someone else, they can remain faultless in their own eyes, no matter what they really say or do. Ask someone why they did something wrong; watch how they try to get out of it. That is another way to see Narcissism.
     Even if the N spouse goes near admitting fault, it will be some kind of rationalization, like "I did do that, because of what you did." That's something that most people will say occasionally, even often, but the N spouse will do it every time. They will also say "Well I did do that, but we all have problems." Not taking responsibility one's own self, without trying to justify, and name others in the blame. Even if others are to blame in a given situation, the person who does not have the N issue can take responsibility for their own actions, separately from anyone else's actions.Even if they state reasons why they were thinking unclearly, like stress, or anger, or childhood issues, they are still able to be fully accountable.
     Here are some comments, I will post them anonymously, from partners of N's that you can read through. If they make you angry and defensive, or if you feel disgust for these commenters, you might be an N yourself. Prove the psychologists wrong~ go get help, do some self-examination, drop your ego and call a therapist. Look up Sam Vaknin. Look up Steve and Kim Cooper. Click this:
If you are an N, you probably will already be rolling your eyes or looking up something else, or looking for the place to comment on this post so you can argue about it. Whatever, you will do what you want to do, regardless of anyone else, even regardless of how it affects you. But if you have the time to look up your favorite band on Youtube, then you have the time to read about Narcissism.

"He told all of the parents at our child's school that I was a prostitute and junkie. People wispered after me in the halls. I had lost my successful design business in LA left my prior marriage for him, lost my career and was totally isolated and alone on the verge of homelessness with our child."\

" I was 8 months pregnant and after being ignored for weeks at a time, bantered at, accused of this n that, enslaved/ isolated- I took a bath and broke down.. Cried, Sobbed,- couldn't stop. The neighbors called the police thinking I was beaten and when police left, he stood over my pregnant naked body glaring at me repeating, "you are white trash, jerry springer shit."/

  "Begging her to get help. Trying to keep my family together. Always being a referee between her and our children. Constantly being belittled, ridiculed, told I was the problem and lied on. Mentally, Verbally and Physically abused. I was her doormat. It finally took her physically hurting me AGAIN to snap out of it and say NO MORE!!"/

"In a fog, trying to figure out what was wrong with me. He was always angry. Every few years I went into counseling, but was instructed to try things that brought on even greater punishments"/

 "I thought I was going mad and couldn't make sense of just how out of control my life was.....and know I understand that the last 3 years of my life has been manipulated, controlled and almost destroyed by the man I loved.
The harder I tried, the more he wanted......more love, more support, more time, more energy.....a neverending demand on my mental, emotional and physical resources, not to mention my finances. I lost count of how often I heard him say "you don't love me" or "you don't care about me". "/

"...his dog bit me, unprovoked and vicious, bit a hole right through the skin between my toes. My husband witnessed it and didn't move at all.No emotion, no concern, no reprimanding/controlling his dog.I ran to the bathroom crying as much from the emotional pain of his utter lack of concern for me or my feelings, as from the pain of the bite itself. I sat in that bathroom for 45 minutes crying and thinking. When I came out and confronted him about his coldness, he stated " that's not a bite, if my dog *really* bit you, your foot would be dangling from your ankle".

 "I fell over the dishwasher door that was open. I was huge pregnant with twins. I couldn't get up. As I was trying, my ex ran to the dishwasher door to see if I bent it and left me to roll around trying to get up. One of our children helped me get up.

"My youngest boy is somewhat nervous in public (but great company and has many friends) If he is nervous when he finally gets the limelight at a party etc., and starts talking about something for a little too long (but has everyone's attention and usually their interest too) his big brother and his friend will say let's go swimming or do any manner of even sneakier things to steal the lime light and make him look foolish including openly mocking him, but of course pretending that it is funny and good natured. If they can make him cry and get embarrassed while they are still just laughing and having fun then they have really got him and will of course pretend that it is his fault for being oversensitive, ie. there is something wrong with him and they are not only perfect but also in a position to judge him defective."/