Critics But Not Supporters: Narcissists

If a Narcissist is watching what you do, whether it's cleaning, doing a creative project, studying, or doing what you do for a career or a living, they will RARELY make any comments in a supportive or encouraging way, but they will be QUICK to criticize, correct, or accuse.

They will readily say or imply negative things about what you do, but rarely positive ones.

If they say anything at all, that is.
(Commenting on something you're doing might make it become real...)

The only reason a Narcissist says positive, encouraging things to another person is for a specific purpose: trying to gain brownie points, trying to impress the person, gain their trust, make points with someone else nearby, or because they want the person to keep performing and making them money.

Narcissists Have To Be The Boss

Narcissists are NOT concerned about you, your well being, or the relationship between you. They are ONLY concerned for themselves, their comfort, their gain, their reputation, their stuff, avoiding blame and consequences, and avoiding obligation.

They are NOT concerned about you, that's why they rarely do anything that looks, feels, or sounds like "caring". They will only do occasional acts that are their OWN idea in order to prove that they do care, but NOT anything that was YOUR idea. They'll typically do anything they can to avoid doing anything YOU suggest, request, instruct, or ask for, and that includes big things, little things, important things, trivial things, from going on vacation to going to a movie, from going to a counselor to baking a birthday cake, from (you) going back to school to trying Nutrisystem, from painting your bedroom to building an addition, from putting a band together to going camping, from cooking a five course meal to serving ice cream.

It doesn't matter WHAT IT IS, if YOU suggest it, they will probably avoid doing it, or helping you do it, or allowing you to do it. If they fulfilled your request or agreed to your suggestion at first, they will almost certainly become more and more agitated as time goes by, and especially if there is any process or instruction required.
After the first or second time fulfilling something you requested, they can actually become depressed. whether it's a big thing or a little thing, because their frustration and humiliation level will be so high from not getting to be IN CHARGE of you. You are supposed to serve, assist, applaud, praise, support, follow, admire, wait for, sympathize, change, and be there for THEM, not the other way around. 

Those who have Control Issues FIRST decide whether a person is "above them" or "below them" before they interact with them. (Before, not after).
If a person is "above them", in their mind, it's because they admire or adulate them; they have chosen the person as someone to put on a pedestal and "look up to". So they will follow them, believe them, and seek their approval. They will follow their instructions and commands willingly, and appear to be a humble, easy-going person who is full of respect for others.

If they've decided that a person is "below" them, (or closer to equal with them, which means almost equal but not quite), they HAVE TO BE THE BOSS AT ALL TIMES.

Even if they try to FAKE IT to save face or to condescend temporarily, they will not be able to do it for very long, and will become agitated. 

They CAN NOT abide or allow the person to know something they don't, or to be more capable in something, or to lead them or instruct them in any way. They CAN NOT allow the person to be well-liked (or more liked) by others. They CAN NOT allow the person to receive RESPECT or recognition from others, and they certainly are not going to GIVE the person respect or recognition.
The person is their inferior, in their imagination, and therefore they are entitled to be their superior.    

Gun Nuts Vs. Responsible Gun Ownership

The difference between responsible gun ownership and a "gun nut" is VAST:

By Karen B.
"The ex-N (ex partner) was a person who was a very "passionate" hunter and also a rabid gun enthusiast. Over time, I found both of his "hobbies" very disturbing. He loved to kill ("hunt") animals/bi
rds and he loved his guns. He was obsessed. He spent practically all of his spare time on these two "hobbies," and when I expressed concern about this, he told me that guns and "gun culture" was his passion in life. To which I responded that people/human beings (uh, like me) have feelings and guns don't have feelings. To which he responded that his guns have feelings. I was appalled. He was serious, although later, he said he was just joking, of course. He looked down on me because I refused to have anything to do with guns or hunting, and I told him once that I could/would never shoot a deer unless it was for my survival. He actually looked down on me for this! I think that his guns, and shooting and killing (uh, excuse me, he would remind me that it is "hunting," a sport, a time-honored pastime, a culture) animals made him feel very powerful and manly, and he derived a sick pleasure -- I mean, real pleasure -- from shooting and killing animals, just as he derived pleasure from hurting (in a non-physical way), deceiving, dominating, manipulating, controlling, frightening, lying to and "getting one over on" people he used and abused. And I think that he would have derived the same sort of pleasure from physically harming the people he hated, had he been able to get away with this. I think in his mind, animals and people had no feelings, and they were there for his pleasure, and he felt entitled to do to them whatever gave him pleasure or amusement. Side note: As you wrote above, he hated cats...loved dogs. And said that men shouldn't like cats because cats were feminine and not manly pets to have. Yet, I also saw the way he treated dogs, which was not gentle "discipline," but rather rough domination and intimidation when one did something he didn't think they should do.

War On Women: Male Bias, Right Wing

People have been accusing the "Right" of anti-female bias for a few decades now, and also of racism.

Personally I think that's hilarious.
The only people I've ever met who did NOT have male bias or anti-female bias were not "Right" OR "Left".

And when you think about it, that makes sense. People who identify themselves with a political party, and who take sides, are prone to taking sides in other things as well. They have to be on a "team", and they want to be a member of the "better team".
So they pick the team that they relate with and claim that their team is the best team, and the other team is the crappy team.

That's what they do with the sexes. They have to make one sex "better" than the other, they can't just be respectful and objective about BOTH sexes.
They'll ignore and put down people from one sex, (the other "team"), and hold people of the other sex (their "team") up on a high pedestal, following them, listening to them, admiring them, praising them, applauding them, lauding them, honoring them, sympathizing with them, wanting to be "like" them, putting them in charge of things, trusting them for not very good reasons to lead them solely based on their sex (their "team"). 

Then they wonder why the world is so messed up...

Teams mean competition, and competition means competing until one team "wins" and the other "loses".

If we want RESOLUTION, then pitting people against each other is like running to the wrong goalpost to score a point. Who would do that?!

They Don't Really Like You, Accept It At Face Value

Narc. abuse training includes believing what someone SAYS, and ignoring what they DO.

"Do as I say, not as I do" is an aspect of this training. It's been going on for a very long time in the human species.

So when someone tells you they love you, care about you, has your back, respects you, has your best interest and well-being in mind, you (I, we) want to believe it, so we do.

When they don't show up, make promises and change them, avoid talking about anything directly, or when they counter, invalidate, insult, triangulate, or generally treat you like they couldn't care much less about you if they tried, or like they don't like you (me, us), you (I, we) rationalize their actions and try to make them into something that they're not, or make excuses for them so we don't have to accept the truth that's staring us right in the face.

"Maybe he or she is busy... preoccupied... depressed.. anxious...afraid of commitment...emotionally wounded...intimidated...stressed out..."

or "Maybe I'm being too forward...
too straightforward...intense...nerdy...caring...making them back off..."

Reality is, however, that when we connect with someone in a genuine way, the connection is mutual. They don't invade our boundaries, put us down, abuse us, or blow us off anymore than we do that to them. They wouldn't lie about their feelings, they wouldn't try to avoid us, they wouldn't triangulate with other people against us, and they would be mutually supportive.

That's what a REAL connection looks like. You wouldn't have to chase them around to spend time with you, do things with you, talk to you, treat you with normal respect and consideration, or protect yourself from their invalidation, criticism, put-downs, or control.

If they're treating you like they don't really like you, take it at face value. They probably don't.
Why not? Who cares. They probably don't like chocolate or kittens or shooting stars or salamanders or games or boats or hugs or Carol Burnett or Christmas snow or Looney Tunes or S'Mores or fire flies either.

Ego, Confidence and Skill Vs. Coping Mechanisms

All "normal" humans have "ego". The ego protects the person and the "self", it protects itself, and the person protects their own ego. It's our shield, our boundaries, and it's directly connected to our "identity".
When it's healthy, it helps us protect ourselves, it helps us get around and function in the world, believe in our own abilities, feel and respond to signals and messages from our body, care for ourselves, build our sense of identity and self, and interact with other people.
When it's been weakened or damaged, and especially when the injury has not been cared for, it becomes swollen like any other wound, and much more sensitive.
Like a wound or a severe burn on the skin, it swells up, becomes painful to the touch, and opens us up to invasion from the outside world. We automatically protect a wound from touch or further damage, but if we don't treat it properly, it becomes infected and can make us very sick, or worse; and if it does heal without proper treatment, there is likely to be a lot of scar tissue, or a permanent disability such as with unset broken bones.

When the healthy egos of children are harassed, attacked, neglected, and improperly cared for by those around them, they tend to become self-protective, and don't learn the difference between healthy self-confidence and a swollen or scarred ego. They'll figure out ways to COPE and SURVIVE in the hostile environment they're living in instead of growing in a healthy way.

For example and illustration, a child who is abandoned in the woods with nothing must learn how to survive by trial and error, and may not make it without dealing with starvation, serious illness, injury, or attack from predators. The child has to figure out ways to survive everything they encounter all on their own, by trial and error, with no learned knowledge or skill about anything. How would the child know which berries to eat and which to avoid? How to find clean water? How to deal with illness? How to make clothes or shelter? How to stay warm? How to fight off predators, or hide from them? He or she wouldn't know that the tree bark right in front of them has aspirin in it to fight a fever or pain, or that one flower is edible and medicinal, but another is not, or how to make or use a bow and arrow, or how to start a fire or what to use, or how to make clothing, or what to use, or not to drink any water they find, or why not, or how to filter it, etc.. How would they figure each of these things out on their own? They wouldn't. They would figure some things out if they survived long enough, but much of it needs to be taught by someone else, who also learned from someone before them, and so on.

But another child abandoned with nothing, but who was given guidance and taught about the woods, how to find and prepare food, how to stay safe and warm, and how to deal with predators and attackers has a much, much better chance of survival, but not only survival; the child has a good chance of "mastering" his or her environment, and building a good life.

The first child's ego and self would be focused on the survival of the physical organism, coping and trying to figure out ways to survive, scared a lot of the time, worried the rest of the time, rarely feeling anything like peace, hope, contentment, or optimism for the future. The child's focus would be in survival mode more of the time than not, which means the child's entire person and health is under constant stress. The child is likely to develop hyper-defensiveness issues as well that stay with them even when the environment is safe. The child is likely to develop a fixed focus on the outside world, mostly limited to what seems like "danger" that needs to be avoided or attacked, and what is attainable and useable for their own survival. 

But the second abandoned child's ego and self would be focused on mastering survival skills that he or she already has, because he or she wouldn't have to be constantly trying to figure it out and living in fear and anxiety. The child would be USING skills and knowledge already learned, and building upon them, which help to build healthy confidence, self, and identity. It also means the child would be building THINGS, such as a shelter, cooking areas and utensils, weapons, clothing, and anything else he or she thinks of, and therefore creating a "home" and a "sanctuary".

Take What You Need And Leave The Rest

"Take what you need and leave the rest".
That's an A.A. phrase, and it means "If you don't like or agree with the person speaking (in an AA meeting, or anywhere else), keep it to yourself, keep quiet, don't interrupt, and don't insert drama. Respect their turn to speak, and hear what they have to say with your grown-up ears, and your grown-up manners.
If they don't respect YOUR turn to speak, or your POV or experiences, that's a completely different issue, that's THEIR behavior, not yours.
You don't have to hang out with them or invite them to your home, or even talk to them. But listen to what they have to say, learn what you can even if it's just a little, take that with you, and leave the rest behind. You don't have to like or agree with a person to learn things from them or from their experiences, or even from their personality or issues.
Listening to a person has absolutely nothing to do with giving them authority over you, giving them sympathy, believing whatever they say, or following them. Those are all separate things, and they're each your own choice."

That's where healthy boundaries come in.