Are You The Narcissist Or The Victim?
Many victims of narcissistic abuse are confused about whether they are narcissists or victims. The reason for this is because the narcissist never validates their experiences. The narcissist will abuse them and shift the blame on to them. The narcissist will project their feelings of hatred, anger, envy, and jealousy onto the victim. They will also keep a code of silence regarding the abuse. Even when the victim does try to seek help, it is unlikely that anyone will believe them. Most people are not educated on narcissistic abuse, they don't understand. So when the victim confronts the narcissist, the narcissist will use the gaslighting tactic, and the victim is made to feel like they are going crazy. And even when the victim tries to seek help outside of the relationship, no one believes them or no one understands. This can be very confusing for the victim. I am going to start by going through 27 warning signs that should identify whether you or someone you care about has been experiencing narcissistic abuse. 1. Self-blame and feelings of shame or guilt. 2. Feeling unsafe. 3. Anger and rage. 4. Grief and loss. 5. Dissociation - Feeling emotional or even physically detached from the environment. 6. Walking on eggshells. 7. Loss of control, feeling powerlessness. 8. Changes in sexuality or intimacy. 9. Sacrificing basic needs and desires and emotional and physical safety to please the narcissist. 10. Serious physical or mental health issues. 11. Substance abuse. 12. Weight Loss. 13. Weight Gain. 14.Insomnia. 15. Nightmares. 16. Emotional or visual flashbacks. 17. Hypervigilance and paranoia. 18. Difficulty trusting others. 19. Self-harm. 20. Suicidal thoughts. 21. Isolation. 22. Comparing themselves to other people. 23. Self-sabotage. 24. Fear of love. 25. Fear of success. 26. Minimizing the abuse. 27. Denial. Those are the 27 signs.
I hope that they have helped you to identify whether or not you or someone you care about has been experiencing narcissistic abuse. One of the signs I mentioned was anger and rage. Many victims of narcissistic abuse have been abused for such a prolonged period of time, that they may become emotionally or even physically abusive. There is a difference in the way that they are abusive. The victim has been pushed and provoked for such a long period of time until they have become sensitized and more reactive to what the narcissist is doing to them. They might become paranoid or hypervigilant and then lash out unexpectedly. This is known as reactive abuse and it is often completely out of character for the victim and it is a very clear sign that they are being abused. Narcissists identify the point where the victim becomes reactive to their abuse. They will then take note of what it took for them to reach that point. They will train the victim to reach that point of reacting to their abuse faster and faster as time goes by. Narcissists know that even the calmest person will react to prolonged abuse and rather than accepting that this is a natural trait of any person, they will use it to take advantage of the victim. Once the victim reacts to the abuse, they will then shift the blame on to them. They will use it to make the victim think that they are abusive or they're going crazy. The narcissist will see the constant provocation as irrelevant to how you are reacting to them.
Many times people will be too focused on blaming the victim for their reactions to the abuse, rather than identifying what it is that caused them to act in such an unusual way. Anything that appears out of character for the victim could be a sign that they are being abused. Narcissists do not allow their victims to be themselves. They are always trying to control the victim, while the victim is trying to use logic or reasoning. The victim will try to express how they feel about the situation, while the narcissist will dictate the victim's thoughts and
feelings. It will appear as though the narcissist is not hearing or understanding anything that the victim is saying and instead the narcissist will be dictating how the victim thinks or feels about the situation. In an argument or disagreement, the narcissist will often use "You" statements, while the victim will often use "I" statements. The victim will try to express their thoughts or feelings, while the narcissist will try to dictate what the victim wants or what
they are trying to do. The narcissist will be accusing the victim, rather than expressing their own thoughts or feelings. The narcissist does not consider the victim's thoughts, feelings, or their logic or reasoning. Because the narcissist already has it made up in their minds, that the victim has a hidden agenda or motive. Narcissists are paranoid or hypervigilant because deep down they know that they are abusive, they know that they are manipulative. They know that they would exploit or take advantage of the victim at any given opportunity, so they expect the victim to do the same. So they will ignore however the victim is claiming to think or feel. Instead, they will dictate the victim's thoughts or feelings. They will dictate what the victim wants or what they are trying to do. Narcissists have a very unhealthy way of communicating, which is counter-productive to any form of logic or reasoning. During an argument or disagreement, they will be full of rage. The only emotion they will be experiencing at that moment is anger, which may have developed from other emotions such as hate, envy or jealousy. The narcissist will be accusing or attacking the victim, rather than trying to find a solution to the problem.
There will be no flexibility or compromise with the narcissist. The narcissist will be unwilling to hear what the victim is saying, unwilling to understand how the victim feels. Everything has to be done in the narcissist's way. The victim will feel as though there is nothing they can say or do to get through to the narcissist, to make them listen or understand. The victim will become emotional, they may experience anger which develops from the pain of not being able to get through to the narcissist. The victim will focus on the narcissist's behavior and how they are being treated by them. The narcissist will focus on who you are as a person, rather than what they believe you have said or done to them. They will attack your character and claim that you are a bad person, something is wrong with you or you are crazy. Unlike the victim, the narcissist won't attack your behaviours, as much as they will attack your character and the core of who you are as a person. The victim will acknowledge and admit to their faults or mistakes. While the narcissist will deny, blameshift or gaslight the victim.
You may have the same argument or disagreement with the narcissist, day after day for months or even years, but nothing ever gets resolved. How you think or how you feel does not matter to the narcissist. They have their own ideas of how you think and feel, so anything that you tell them is a lie or not relevant to the situation. They believe that they already know everything they need to know, so they don't require any input from you. They want to dictate your thoughts and feelings to you. They want to tell you how to think and how to feel. Your choices and decisions do not matter. They do not affect an end result. The narcissist does not want a mutual understanding or a resolution, as it would not benefit them or allow them to control you. They want to control and dominance. A mutual understanding or a resolution would prevent them from having that control or dominance over you. A healthy person will react to a display of vulnerability. No matter how angry they are, they will say something will show that they can see that person's pain. The victim will have a desire to acknowledge the person's pain and want to reach a resolution.
The narcissist will not acknowledge the victim's pain. And this is probably the biggest giveaway that you are dealing with a narcissist. Narcissists are self-absorbed and lack empathy. The narcissist will see that you are in pain and they will either ignore it or make fun of you. Your pain has no significance or importance to the narcissist. Remember, they are self-absorbed and lack empathy. The only pain that matters is their pain. So whatever you are going through, although they can see and are completely aware that you are in pain, they will never acknowledge it. If they do acknowledge it, it will only be used as an opportunity to further abuse or humiliate you. The narcissist needs you to act in a way that is beneficial for them. Acknowledging or validating your pain is not going to be beneficial for them to control you. So they will ignore it as though it's so insignificant, so unimportant, that it's not even worth their attention.