advertisement

49 thoughts on “The Secret Façade of the Vulnerable Narcissist

  • November 23, 2016 at 8:52 pm
    Permalink

    Thank you for writing an article in reaponse to my earlier comment! This is my situation & I’m too sick to leave. Thanks again & will keep reading your blog.

    Reply
      • June 29, 2018 at 11:04 am
        Permalink

        Hi,

        With very much great efforts after 5 years of marriage with Narcissistic wife, escaped and survived. Fighting hard to get out of trauma but helpless. No help is available and still searching.

        nsgilani@hotmail.com

        Reply
      • September 7, 2018 at 11:19 am
        Permalink

        Aren’t we ALL narcissistic to some degree? Don’t we all have egos?? Where is the delineation between narcissism and insecurity?

        Reply
      • September 7, 2018 at 1:28 pm
        Permalink

        No we are not all narcissistic. Narcissism is not the same thing as ego, they have two different definitions. Insecurity is the opposite of narcissism.

        Reply
  • November 29, 2016 at 1:57 am
    Permalink

    Madam,
    I truly hope your clients have enough strength and wisdom to recognize that you either have personality disorder with the possibility to misuse your power, or you are an ignorant, illiterate, and incompetent “clinician”. Unfortunately,there are many ignorant people like you in the field of mental health/illness. Beside lack of knowledge you seem to have lack of empathy toward the population that you suppose to serve. I am amazed that your license has not been revoked.

    Reply
  • December 1, 2016 at 3:23 pm
    Permalink

    Sounds a lot like my roommate honestly. I feel like I’m walking on pins and needles when I’m around her.

    Reply
    • June 29, 2018 at 11:20 am
      Permalink

      Same feelings was with me while I married to narcissistic wife for last 5 years. Still in trauma while I left her 9 months back with no contacts.

      Reply
  • December 5, 2016 at 4:44 am
    Permalink

    Are there any resources to help parents whose child shows these exact characteristics? My mother has been dx with narcisstic behaviour so I know it’s in the family.

    Reply
  • March 30, 2017 at 7:53 am
    Permalink

    Yes – a tragedy really…. my best friend is a vulnerable narcassist and I think the world of her and yet she’s dangerous and has hurt me many times already.

    people don’t understand or see like I’ve seen and it’s hard because i truly love this woman.

    And she will never know. Now I have to leave her because she is too dangerous and i hate even having to make this decision.

    I don’t know what’s worse – leaving someone you love or the fact they will never know that you left them BECAUSE you loved them.

    God help us all.

    Reply
  • April 27, 2017 at 2:45 pm
    Permalink

    I read all your posts about narcissism and it seems as if you are dividing personality disorders into “bad” and “acceptable”. Narcissism being bad, of course. You write a lot about how to work with narcissists, how to divorce narcissists, and they come out as pure evil in your posts. But surely you, as a mental health specialist, must understand that narcissists suffer too, maybe even much more due to the very fact that they are narcissists. And can’t help their behaviour as sometimes don’t even realise it. And thanks to your advice other people might really fuck them up.

    Reply
    • July 27, 2018 at 4:47 pm
      Permalink

      M, I agree with your comment that narcissists suffer too. As the child of a narcissist, I spent a lot of years wondering what in the world was going on – the whole family could tell something was wrong, we just couldn’t put our finger on what it was. In my 30s I learned about narcissism in a very accidental way and then began devouring all the information I could to learn about the disorder. This knowledge offered me the ability to feel compassion for my father and all he must experience every day – likely without even realizing it. But it also taught me that any relationship I decided to have with my father would be a toxic one – it allowed me to make an informed decision about how to proceed in a relationship with him and how to set boundaries. I am grateful for the knowledge that was shared by so many clinicians that allowed this compassion and understanding (to the extent I am capable of understanding). Without these, there would only be anger, frustration, and confusion.

      Reply
  • May 18, 2017 at 1:03 pm
    Permalink

    You can spot a few personality disordered commenters on this thread as they are hyper-sensitive to criticism and project their own inner anguish onto others in attempts to blame. Thank you for your many articles… so informative.

    Reply
  • June 22, 2017 at 11:30 pm
    Permalink

    You’ve got a glaring spelling mistake:
    “Unlike GNs, VNs ae very talented in using false humility and shallow apologies….”
    Basic spelling mistakes and grammatical errors reduce a reader’s confidence in the author.

    Reply
  • June 22, 2017 at 11:35 pm
    Permalink

    And one more:
    “This is not my fault but someone else fault.”
    Should be “this is not my fault but someone else’s fault.”
    If you correct these, I’d like to share this with others on Twitter etc.
    Many thanks.

    Reply
  • July 10, 2017 at 3:14 am
    Permalink

    Thanks Christine for your article.

    Unfortunately, I am going through a divorce with a VN.
    It’s hell living with a VN.
    Unfortunately, there is a child in the mix and the interim custody order is being abused to frustrate and punish me.

    After 12 years of abuse, I was completely broken. It’s only through meditation practice that I’ve lasted as long.
    And can you believe that I just realized that she is a VN? I’ve always had a suspicion that she was not well, but articles such as yours have made a difference. Labeling it has made it real!

    So, thank you again.

    The challenges are still ahead of me.

    A

    Reply
    • June 29, 2018 at 5:02 am
      Permalink

      I, too, am in the middle of a divorce after 10 years married to a woman who I believe is a VN. She exhibits many of the behaviors described in the author’s article. Inattentiveness, unaffectionate, non-intimate, always well made up (make up, attire, accessories, etc…), nothing is ever her fault, concerns that I had about her behavior towards me throughout our entire relationship were never addressed by her and worse yet, she’d blame me and say “why would I want to be affectionate and intimate with you when you never do X, Y, or Z?”, always posting selfies to social media, and lastly and most importantly, grew up in a household with a cold, cruel and controlling mother.

      The marriage started spiraling out of control when she got a new job early last year. I was happy for her because she went from a workplace environment that she wasn’t happy with to one where she liked the people and felt like a more loose and friendly atmosphere. But I started to notice that she was more free with her affections and behaviors with these people. By her own admission she’s come home and tell me stories about her day and how they would all tease, joke – sometimes in a sexual nature and in a couple instances she described how they’d sometimes get flirty. These were all behaviors she NEVER exhibited with me in our relationship and it devastated me to see her being so free with them to people she’s known for such a short time. Late last year she went to a wine tasting with a group of coworkers on a weeknight to a restaurant in another small town 25 minutes away from us. We had worked out plans for her to Uber to and from the event since I needed to stay home with the kids. Around 1am I started looking at the Uber app and noticed drivers were disappearing from the map quickly(1am on a Thursday night in a small town isn’t busy enough for drivers to stay out all night). So I texted to tell her she may want to think about wrapping it up because drivers were getting scarce. No reply from her until after 3am. Turns out they all ended up going to a nearby bar around midnight. Her phone had died. One of her co-worker’s sons ended up picking them up and bringing them back to the co-worker’s home where they sobered up a bit and the the coworker drove my wife home and she got in around 4am. The next day I asked her about the night and she told me all of the above. I was upset for several reasons. With all the prior behaviors mentioned above and the the bad choices she made that night I told her that if that was how future outings were going to be then I didn’t want her to go to them anymore. Well, in her mind, I’m not trying to control her and at that point, when I started to finally push back against her behaviors towards me, was when our marriage was over. She no longer needed me because I wasn’t enabling her anymore. From then on out any discussion we would have turned into a huge argument. When the arguments would get heated, I’d turn to drinking and would start to say cruel things to her and yell at her. Finally, in February of this year I moved out. I needed to remove myself from the toxicity of her behaviors and focus on making myself a better person for me and my kids.

      It sucks because I’m lonely now. I don’t have much family left while she has a huge family and they all live withinn 10 minutes. And, of course, they’re all enabling her by praising her for how strong she’s being for herself and the kids and doing it all on her own (words said by her in our last therapy session).

      She filed for divorce on May 11. We had our custody and support hearing this past Wednesday. Divorce will be final on Feb 14, 2019. Happy freaking valentines day, right?

      It all boils down to emotional abuse, really. For 12.5 years I clung to the hope that she’d come around and open up to me and be more affectionate, loving, doting, flirty and intimate to and with me. And for 12.5 years I was told I was the problem that made her not able to be those things for me. It’s demoralizing, depressing and frustrating. I would literally shut down. Stay in bed all day. Not do anything with her or my kids. Not do anything around the house. And all that made it even more my fault, but how was I supposed to better myself while staying in an unloving and unwanting environment? I had to leave to find myself again.

      Reply
      • June 29, 2018 at 8:25 am
        Permalink

        Thank you for sharing your story. It is wise to care for yourself before trying to care for others. I hope you complete your healing process.

        Reply
  • August 28, 2017 at 2:07 pm
    Permalink

    I hate that every blog or discussion is about DEALING with a narcissist, instead of narcissism. I’ve been diagnosed with vulnerable narcissism after years of being suicidal. All I’m trying to do is find a place to share my feelings on the other side of this, but instead I see the pure hatred that people have towards people like me. I feel like narcissism is one of the only mental illnesses that people have no empathy for. What am I to do? I’m in psychotherapy, yet I can’t talk about my problems, because everyone immediately thinks that it’s just that I’m a dick, or that I have the grandiose version. No, I’m miserable and empty inside. I haven’t felt happy ever.

    But I’m sure this will just be seen as a form of passive-aggressive manipulation, right?

    Reply
  • September 22, 2017 at 10:05 am
    Permalink

    Thank you for writing this blog. I have suffered in a romantic relationship with a VN for over 20 years. Over a year ago I stumbled onto the concept of NPD. Alarms immediately went off in my mind. I read voraciously about it. Yet, many articles described the grandiose narcissist, and some of those traits did not ring true with my narc. He is fairly introverted. I tried googling introvert and narcissist. At that point the articles became even more accurate describing my significant other. However, none of those articles nailed his personality like this one. I was so relieved to be able to identify and put a name to the behavior I had been dealing with. Sadly, I have also read that NPD is extremely difficult to treat, and there is limited success at best. Discovering this, along with escalating anger and aggression in my home directed at both me and my children, gave me the courage to leave. Many of us suffer in these relationships for so many reasons: fear of the unknown, vows we do not wish to break, guilt for breaking up a family, pity for the person suffering from NPD. After over 20 years with this person, I grieve many things, one of which is my inability to help him heal. But ultimately, I had to view him as something similar to an injured wild animal. I pity the suffering being, but my attempts to help were only resulting in injury to myself and my children. For our own safety and sanity we had to leave. I pray that someday there will be breakthroughs in treatment of this disorder. I know that it’s likely that as much as my children and I are suffering, he is suffering more.

    Reply
  • October 9, 2017 at 1:29 pm
    Permalink

    This article explains my ex to a teeee. He is a bookcase covert narc. OMG! He is in therapy now for anger issues. I knew something was off with him going into 2 years in a relationship. I do have high self-worth and have a high tolerance for things- I may even be an empath. I feel for people deeply. He took advantage of that. Come to find I am a magnet for narcs. I met him online. He told me it easier from him to meet people online then on the street. He was open about his feelings and what people have done to him. He was always in victim mode. I never felt sorry for him,but I kept listening. He was paranoid as well. He had multiple relationships. He told me his ex-wife called him a sociopath. My ex-husband was the typical narc. Thats why I could not see the signs clearly because he had the traits of a covert. There were a lot of red flags, but I chose to ignore them. I do not like talking about myself and when I met him that was all he did. Then something change. I thought maybe he had Asperger’s or BPD. I knew he was egotistical. But, I felt that did not explain the crap I went through emotional with him and he knew I was getting closer to the truth because he would say stop analyzing me. I started to lose confidence in myself. He would be one way at home and another person when he was with his co-workers! He told me he different at home because that was his real self. His real self-was passive-aggressive, aloof, rude, talked a lot about himself,acting bored. He would say I want to be appreciated. He said “it is me against the world.” He also thought in white and black(splitting). He would gaslight me a lot. When with his co-workers, he was happy, fun, entertaining and loving life, but the reality was he was not like that at all.

    Reply
  • November 17, 2017 at 11:16 am
    Permalink

    Your description fits my wife to a tee. I have been married for nearly 25 years and have put up with a lot of abusive behaviors as my wife is a vulnerable narcissist as well as a compulsive shopper that has caused us to accumulate over $200K in debt. Additionally she seems to exhibit a lot of emotional immaturity, which I have heard is common with someone with Turner’s Syndrome (which she also has). My teenage/adult children, and my mother, all think that I should divorce her, although it won’t be easy. However, I think I might be able get her to go counseling. Should I try and get her help, or is this a lost cause?

    Reply
    • November 17, 2017 at 9:19 pm
      Permalink

      I always vote for trying to see if she can’t get better with counseling before throwing in the towel. But put a time limit on her recovery so it doesn’t drag out for years.

      Reply
  • March 18, 2018 at 6:27 pm
    Permalink

    Hi, I recognized myself in some of these points and I had no idea there was anything wrong with me at all 😮 What do I do? I don’t want to cause any sort of damage to anyone. How do VN typically hurt others?

    Reply
  • April 27, 2018 at 10:00 am
    Permalink

    I just got diagnosed this week. After feeling suicidal, anxious, depressed, unhappy with life and jumping from job to job over the past 40 years, it now all starting to making sense. I was surprised at first to hear the Narcissist word in the diagnosis as I had associated the term with good looking, high achievers, people on would expect to find heavily enamored with themselves. However, the full list of symptoms, particularly relating to the NV sub-type, are a sure hit on some of the traits I had been observing in myself.
    I am fortunate to have found a therapist that after several intense interview sessions, was able to make this diagnostic. I think the road to recovery is going to be long, arduous and fraught with setbacks, but I am grateful for the opportunity to enjoy my family and lead a normal, care sharing life.
    I will never forget but forgive myself for past mistakes and if at all possible, seek forgiveness from many that I have hurt in the past.
    But I do look forward to the future.
    m.

    Reply
  • June 21, 2018 at 1:57 am
    Permalink

    What a great article. My, now deceased, brother had all the symptoms and eventually turned on me and those supporting him. He lived in his own mythomanic world of situations and responded with defensive, victim stories, when people reacted to his strange behaviour. (My silly expression is “the world was in his head and his head not in the world”). The hurt and confusion caused was huge and friends and I had to walk away eventually, as we were accused of all sorts of transgressions. I find it strange that a person with this disorder has the ability to play on others guilt and empathy, yet display none of these emotions in their makeup.

    Reply
  • June 24, 2018 at 8:36 am
    Permalink

    I highly suggest reading Dr. Edith Fiore’s “The Unquiet Dead”. This touches on the topic of entities. These are spirits which inhabit out souls- (and are responsible for most of our behavioral difficulties and problems).

    Reply
  • August 4, 2018 at 9:02 pm
    Permalink

    I was so happy to read your article. It describes my wife all too well. I knew things weren’t right that I loved her and kept a since humor. She has been increasingly angry and finally acted out to Domestic abuse to the point where I have a protective order against her. I’m sitting here still hoping this works out. I keep thinking it was my fault. To make things worse, I am suffering from a life ending disease.

    Reply
  • August 14, 2018 at 3:18 pm
    Permalink

    Wow, this is my mother to a T!

    Reply
 

Join the Conversation!

We invite you to share your thoughts and tell us what you think in this public forum. Before posting, please read our blog moderation guidelines. A first name or pseudonym is required and will be displayed with your comment. Your email address is also required, but will be kept private. (Please note that we use gravatars here, which are tied to your email address.) A website/blog/twitter address is optional.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *