The narcissist will often accuse you of things such as cheating, lying, or stealing, being mentally or emotionally unstable, attention-seeking, selfish, or they might even accuse you of being the narcissist. When the narcissist is doing this, they are actually speaking to a mirror. They are projecting their behaviour on to you. They project their unhealed parts on to you because they refuse to take responsibility for them. They don't want to self reflect or look within and resolve whatever their insecurities or deficiencies are. They hate that they are attention-seeking, desperate for approval, envious, jealous. They hate that they feel vulnerable and shameful. When the false self can no longer hide these feelings, their unhealed parts then surface into their consciousness. This can often cause a narcissistic injury.
The narcissistic injury could be caused by something real or imagined. It could be caused by something you said or did, which may have triggered them. Or it could be them reacting to their inner critic or an assumption that they have made. It is inconceivable and intolerable for the narcissist to accept these feelings as if they were their own. This is something that they must avoid experiencing. They cannot accept that they are wrong or imperfect. When you try to confront the narcissist about their behaviour, they will deflect and then project it on to you. Due to their feelings of revulsion or strong disapproval, they have this survival mechanism where they will assign their unhealed parts on to you. This results in you being punished for challenging their false self and you then become this bad person or someone who has done all of these terrible things or been the cause of them. This then gives them the opportunity to punish you even further, even though you may not have done anything wrong. When these unhealed parts appear in the narcissist's consciousness, it is their body telling them that something needs their attention. These issues never get resolved because the narcissist refuses to reflect on what their body is trying to bring to their attention. Instead, they will invent things that didn't happen, distort the evidence, assign significance to relevant things, anything to avoid the truth of the situation, that they are wrong or imperfect.
When the narcissist deflects their unhealed parts, this becomes real to them. This becomes the truth. They don't consciously understand that they are deflecting their unhealed parts on to you. In their minds, you have done something wrong and you deserve to be punished. The narcissist is speaking to a mirror. They don't see you. In their minds, you are just an object used to serve their needs. They assign their negative or positive traits to you, but they never actually acknowledge you as a separate person. You are just an object or an extension of them.
This is where parts of the narcissist will be forced into the other person in some form of unconscious fantasy. The narcissist will strive to find within you the embodiment of projection. They will try to find the representation or expression of something intangible or visible form, which they can then use as a hook to hang projections on. They will even induce you to become the embodiment of projection. They will persuade, lead, incite.
Whatever it takes for them to create a suitable participant for their projection. The feelings which cannot be consciously accessed will then be defensively projected into another person to then bring these thoughts or feelings to the conscious mind. The narcissist uses projective identification as a type of defense, a form of communication, a basic form of relationship, ridding the self of unwanted parts, or for controlling the other person's body and mind. The feelings and attitudes that are forced out in projective identification can be both good and bad. The narcissist may project a feeling of hope within another person when they cannot consciously feel it themselves. In an emotionally healthy person, projective identification helps to experience empathy and to understand other people. The narcissist's projective identification is created from their inability to a form or connection or bond in a healthy way with another person. Their emotions are projected on to you because they are unable to contain or process reality in a healthy way.