Sanctuary for the Abused

Friday, September 15, 2017

Narcissists & Conflict


by Kathy Krajco
One simple but easy-to-forget thing about narcissists is that, unlike normal people, they don't mind conflict. They enjoy it.

Conflict makes normal people uncomfortable. We try to minimize it in our dealings with others. Oddly, we love it in fiction (Conflict is the gunpowder of fiction, and it's near relative - controversy - is the gunpowder of journalism. Maintaining constant conflict is the secret to storytelling success). But note that this is "safe" conflict. In real life we hate what we love to see characters go through in fiction.

Narcissists have a whole different attitude toward conflict. They use it strategically to manipulate. They seek conflict. They become impossible people, flying into conflict with you over anything you think, say, do, feel, or wear. As if THEY have the right to determine what you say, think, do, feel, or wear.

This isn't just arrogance.
It's a game in which you're damned if you do and damned if you don't, because they are being deliberately impossible to please.
When this is the motive, what happens when you try to defuse conflict, when you try to appease? The narcissist sees that as a sign of weakness, as sign of backing down. It just makes him bolder. This is no testing run at you anymore: now he is serious about running you over.
He sees your "weakness" as REASON to come on stronger = to get madder and even more impossible. It's how he's controlling you.
In other words, trying to smooth it over, trying to appease the narcissist just backfires, making him more aggressive, not less aggressive.

So, don't do it.

This is just one of many examples of how normal human behavior backfires in Wonderland, simply because of a narcissist's alien mentality.

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shared by Barbara at 12:07 AM


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11 Comments:

That is a perfect description of the Narcissist perpetually doing this. Some other things are going on in that chaotic vortex. The envy of his victim if she can work around some of his strange expectations & be tolerably contentment means he needs to up the ante again, his empty deadness needs the conflict to feel something keeping him energized & the projection of what he'd do assuming others would.
Until one gets rid of this narcissist, the best way of dealing with his bizzare demands & complaints is by you only indicating that you don't see it fully the same way as him right now, drop the issue, leaving him thinking he must be getting somewhere as his ego is so presumptious.All this with no emotion.This is not appesing him or satiating his love of a battle, he's left busy working out further manouvers & you've a short respite as he silently plots a presumed conclusion his way.
In areas where the Narcissist is behaving in an extremely demeaning way, speak to him like a child specifying how you will not accept such behaviour ( with a very brief simple why it's innapropriate) in your presence & any continuance means you refuse to interact with him, unless it ceases.
Even a narcissist can recognise he's been caught looking unnaceptable and the relief of no wider judgements works to stop it short term or you got your excuse to speed up the parting.
Realistically you ought to be working on going as soon as you can, applying the "no contact" forever.

2:37 PM  

My lord Barbara, do people believe the things he does when you talk about him? Are u still together? And does he actually see what you are posting here (or he is so callous does he not even really care)?

Just to give everyone a flip side view of how BAD this stuff can really get -> picture a gendered male victim of a radically narcissist female trying to protect in turn their two young kids from harm as well! In terms of alleged DV absolutely NOBODY tends to believe a word in defense that I have tried to say . . .

When LEAVING is NOT an option a test of sheer survival skills becomes the most important thing in the whole world!

Will Enjoy Reading, that's for SHARING!

10:33 AM  

I too am married to a severe narcisisstic person. He does exatcly what everyone explains when they explain about how a narcissitic person behaves. the game, the manipulation, the non ending complaints, the fight picking and the pretend crying to win sympathy to get you to submit. the non stop putting down every suggestions, every tried effort and twisting it like it's not right but he is right. the unfaithfullness by committing adultery, the pathological lying. It got worst, he even puts alcohol on my make up, junk in my toothbrush, gets me to wonder about so many things because he knows my weakness. I just want to know how to deal with him smartly, healthy and wisely before divorcing him. I also am thinking about my 9 years old who is attach to him and loves him. I have spoken to a couple of priests, his commander (military airforce), chaplains (military rabii), his parents (they are the same as him) and have called the cops on a couple of occasions. He is so callous that he doesn't mind twisting and lying and he is so belieavable that once he says a story about me with his calm voice ( which is fake because he always yells at me infront of my kids)....everybody believes him and they think that i am the stupid one. And when I explain everything that I am going through they believe that I am paranoid and i am mentally ill. I am a good person full of hopes and good dreams. I know there is a way to bust his adultery, and I know there is a way to expose him and his narcissitic ways. I may be foolish for wanting to get more evidences that he has npd, but I just want it so bad so that I will have justice from all the evil things he's done to me. I also want to get my full rights given to me on a divorce court because he has set me up already and claimed that I will be losing the children once I divorce him. I also considered forgiving him, I have forgiven him multitude times, but after i submit and becomes nice to him, he does it again. May God bless us all dealing with this type of broken human beings. It is their childhood and bad experiences that caused them to develop this mental and personality disorder. either they were a spoiled brat, or purely neglected, rejected and not shown any affection from their care givers or parents when they were young or on all their past relationships. I can feel that if i don't leave him and continue to live with him, I will really go bananas. but leaving him too, doesn't guarantee that he will leave me alone. remember they biggest fear is rejection. they will do anything ugly just to get back at who rejected them. there are laws and there are police, but it is a long shot before convincing them. My main battle is prayer and my hope...

1:28 PM  

Vicki
Consider joined the Facebook group ONE2ONE4VICTIMS and click DISCUSSIONS to talk about it.

You need to get out - he will not change.

1:57 AM  

Vicki, cannot believe I am saying this, getting out is GOOD, but you can also *pocket record him* for about $30 at Best Buy but DO be careful,

Practice doing so with somebody else first! My wife was enraged when I finally admitted I was recording her and, after a month of her screaming misery on record with much in front of our children, don't ya know the Judge flat refused to even listen to them and SHE got custody anyway!

You know, after the usual lies and accusations now it seems THEY are blaming me for putting up with what she has indeed done! As an abused male who for years has fostered bitterness and anger toward the "not so bad" mother (her words!)of our children now I find myself just as bitter and frustrated 1) for not doing something about her sooner and 2) at THEM, our wonderfully biased one-sided domestic court system, who YOU shouldn't have any problem with getting him OUT but ya have to speak up (and be careful!) and truly commit once and for all to making the decision for yourself 'cause nobody else will!

3:50 PM  

From the "Sociopath Next Door" by Martha Stout, pg. 109: "Sociopaths have no regard WHATSOEVER for the social contract, but they do know how to use it to their advantage. And all in all, I am sure that if the devil existed, he would want us to feel very sorry for him.

When deciding whom to trust, bear in mind that the combination of consistantly bad or egregiously inadequate behavior with frequent plays for your pity is as close to a warning mark on a conscienceless person's forehead as you will ever be given. A person whose behavior includes both of these features is not necessarily a mass murderer, or even violent at all, but is still probably not someone you should closely befriend, take on as your business partner, ask to take care of your children, or marry."

Now when I read the Bible and come to where the devil or his demons are talking, I always think of this, and it's interesting to me that you can almost HEAR them whining! Woe is me!

In the book "People of the Lie: The Hope for Healing Human Evil" by Dr. M. Scott Peck (which I read years ago) I vaguely remember a story he told about one of his patients who was demon-possessed (yes, he believed this was possible). The woman described how there was more than one demon inside of her and that she actually felt sorry for one of them because they were low-ranking and whining. (By the way, the hierarchy is VERY important to demons and VERY important to people with the brain functioning of a psychopath. A great book of Christian fiction that describes this hierarchy is "Lord Foulgrin's Letters" by Randy Alcorn. The CD version is awesome!)

8:29 PM  

First, i want to say, this website has been very helpful since i realized i am living with a narcissistic man.

So, the other day, i was out playing with our 3 yo son and 1 yo daughter. Our dog was out as well. Our son is playing basketball with other kids accross the street. They were all running around ( as boys do), and our dog got protective and nipped one of the other older boys. He didn't break the skin, it was a little red mark.

I asked the boy if he was ok, and he was. I told him to let his parents know that the dog scratched his leg. We all went inside and i made dinner, bathed the kids, and put them to bed.

My husband comes home from work and he is in his closed off state of mind like usual. I go through the motions like always and give him food and let him unwind. After that we watch some tv and i remember about the dog. So, i tell him what happened. He didn't bite through the skin and he was perfectly fine.

This is where my husband goes from 0 to 100 in a flash. He gets angry and huffs about the dog being taken away. I try to calm him by reassuring him it wasn't a bite, just a scratch. I was basically trying communicate with him and let him in on what went on.

I get up and head to the bathroom. I am sitting on the toilet and say it really wasn't a big deal. So, he runs up to me, literally SPITS, in my face. Calls me a cunt, says he hates my guts and says he's slept with four women since we got married. WOA, i am completely dumbfounded and get up and leave the room. At first i was in shock and then it hit me. I was outside hyproventilating and crying because i know that this was wrong, what he had done.

This wasn't the first time he had said nasty things. He has fake lunged at me and gotten really close to my face, but never deliberately spit in my face.

The next day he apologized, like always, and i accept and drop the issue. I am so resentful at him. I don't think i can ever forgive him. It is time to get out of the toxic relationship for good. It will be hard and i will get sad, but at least i am not living with a psychopath. Any advice on this would be much appreciated.

11:18 AM  

Michaeltoo, my husband (also a Michael, lol) and I truly feel your frustration with the NPD mom and the court system. He fought so hard to get 50/50 of his two sons. Having gone through years of Alanon meetings (my ex was an addict and sadly passed away a month after I got engaged; I would much rather deal with my addict ex than his NPD ex any day of the week! That's how frustrating NPD can be!), I suggested to my husband that all non-emergency communication be in writing via text or email. Within a year or so of implementing this, she has been severely limited in being able to lie and twist the truth, and we were able to get her held accountable for her garbage. This has lead to police reports being filed and even a mediator writing a report verifying her inability to get past her own agenda for somethings that may be in the best interest of the kids. We have learned with her, that once it is in writing, its much more difficult for her to say "Well that's not what I meant" or "That's not what I said". We have taken the stance that we have to take the high road, communicate what's necessary, not engage in heated discussions and seek out facts for ourselves (I say this last part because we have found out in just this past week she has outright lied about filing follow up paperwork with the court after the last hearing, and lied about leaving messages with the therapist she insisted the 6-year old needed and now wants to change because she is not being told what she wants to hear and because the therapist was emailed regarding a relationship she hid from everyone who has a say in the living situation of the boys, like my husband, the mediator and the judge. All the while our marriage was being blamed for behavior issues happening in just her home...)

1:10 PM  

There are more of these sociopathic people in the world than you would otherwise think. Somehow it has become acceptable to "screw thy neighbor" just to "get ahead". Take LAWYERS for example . . .

10:09 PM  

I was married to a narcissist for 10 years, and free (out of the marriage, but sadly, have 2 kids so I have to deal with him) for over 6 years. Barbara is correct in saying they do not change. My ex- N LOVES conflict; he actually becomes irritated when I am cordial to him. No matter what the occasion, he will get his digs in and cause problems. I knew he was a narcissist about 2 years before I asked him to leave. When he got the boot, all hell broke loose. N's do NOT accept rejection one bit. Ergo- the projections, the defamation of character, lies after lies, and everything he could spew he spewed. It was downright psychotic behavior on his part. The mask can only stay on for so long....words are empty and N's show what they care about (themselves- ONLY) through their behavior. It took me emotionally detaching from him and eventually, complete physical separation to clearly see him for what he is. My friends who have also divorced narcissists tell me (and I agree) that we were under a spell of some sort, not wanting to see how bad it was. I believe that it was a fear-based reaction to the abuse caused by the narcissist. Once we face that inherent fear of going on with life without him/her, and truly embrace an authentic life, then we can break free...this is no easy task, but so well worth it. They wreak havoc on their family, friends, and anyone around them.

2:20 AM  

I am divorcing a NH after 20 years and two children. The thing is that their behavior and their words do not mesh. Therefore, most everything that comes out of their mouths is a lie or a partial lie. You have to start evaluating the behavior and ignore the blames and the excuses. What happens in the meantime, is that your niceness gets taken advantage of as you get brainwashed by the incongruncies of the words and the behavior. He treated me unkindly, impationiently, and critically. He was totally self serving and easily angered. Yet, he told me regularly that he loved me. You cling to hope and trust the words and therefore you stay too long as your mental health goes downhill. When you are under stress, he will increase the stress to get the attention back onto him. The court system is set up with the "why didn't you get out sooner." I guess I will just have to say that I was clinging to the hope that he meant what he said. Lucifer got kicked out of heaven because he thought that he was equal with God. When you are married to a NPD, you live according to his word instead of God's word. It is not a Biblical marriage. There is no room in a NPD's heart for God's love.

12:36 PM  

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