Sanctuary for the Abused

Sunday, October 07, 2018

Do Narcissists KNOW?

"Do narcissists know what they're doing is wrong?"

"Do narcissists know they hurt you?"

"Do narcissists know they're doing bad things?"

"Do narcissists know what they do?"

Do... Narcissists... Know?!

This is by far the most common question asked about narcissists [  ]. Everybody wants to know if narcissists are aware of the pain they're causing, and whether or not they know their behavior is wrong.

People feel very differently about someone who chooses to do something hurtful that they know is wrong and someone who isn't aware that what they're doing is hurtful or wrong (or who doesn't do it on purpose).

Let's say you and a friend are jogging side by side when his foot catches yours and trips you up accidentally. He apologizes, asks if you're all right, helps you up and tells you he didn't mean it. You forgive him without a second thought, and you say it's okay.

But what if you were running alongside a competitor in a road race, and they tripped you to get ahead? You'd feel very differently about this person tripping you up than you felt about your clumsy friend, wouldn't you?

If a two year-old pushes another child down the stairs, we feel very differently about the toddler than we'd feel about a 12 year-old who did the same.

If a developmentally delayed person gets upset and yells at someone, we don't have the same reaction to that as we would to someone of average intelligence who does it.

We clearly have different expectations of - and responses to - people who do not truly know the pain they cause or at least do not cause it intentionally.

Narcissists do know wrong from right. If they didn't, they wouldn't hide their unfair actions like they frequently do. If you ask narcissists whether it's fair play to cut someone off in traffic or take credit for someone else's work, they'll easily be able to tell you it's not right. And if they do either of those things, they will attempt to hide the fact that they've done it. This is because they do know it's wrong, and they don't want to lose the admiration and respect of others who will think less of them for having done so.

However, the diagnosis of pathological narcissism involves the presence of insufficient empathy. Even though narcissists do know hurting someone's feelings is wrong, they still aren't capable of really empathizing very much with (and therefore, caring about) the person being hurt.

So when narcissists need an ego fix, they do what they know is wrong (like putting someone down), largely because they lack the empathy that should stop them. Then, because they are aware that what they did is wrong and that people will think less of them for it, they cover it up so they won't have to pay the consequences. (Narcissists don't like consequences. Those are for little people.)

So narcissists will do insensitive things to get their narcissistic supply, because they both want it so badly and because there's no empathy to make them feel for the people they're being unkind to. Then, because they are aware it's wrong and that it makes them wrong, they cover it up and (perhaps sometimes unconsciously) deny it, gaslighting and projecting their way out of responsibility so that nobody, including themselves, will see them as imperfect for having done it. (And if you see them as imperfect, then you're a serious problem, because as long as you're there to remind them they're not perfect, they'll have to think about the concept, and they just plain won't.)


Do narcissists know they hurt you?

They know you're hurt, but they don't feel your hurt.

Do narcissists know what they're doing is wrong?

They know what wrong is, and they may do it, but they cannot accept the concept of being a person who does anything wrong, because that means they're not superior and perfect. So narcissists vehemently push away the information that they've done something hurtful. They do know what a hurtful act is, and yet they have to deny that they did it.

Narcissists use a number of different ways to deny their hurtful actions (and to try making you deny it along with them so you'll stop complaining). Blaming others, gaslighting, labeling someone who complains about them cruel, lying, making excuses and playing the martyr are a narcissist's typical responses. Whatever it takes to stop all recognition (by them and you) of the fact that they were inconsiderate can be expected.

So yes, narcissists are aware that they've hurt your feelings and that it's wrong, but they just cannot accept that knowledge. They deny it to prevent narcissistic injury, and desperately want you to deny it as well. And usually, they deny it so quickly and so habitually that it doesn't even register in their consciousness before the excuses and protests are given out.

Typically, when told they've hurt your feelings, a narcissist's denial takes the forms of insisting you're not hurt, or that you shouldn't be hurt, that you're wrong to be hurt, that they didn't hurt you, that you're too easily hurt, and that you shouldn't complain because they're hurt worse. Narcissists

Copyright 2009. Lights House


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shared by Barbara at 1:26 AM



I've known this. I know that he can't understand how I can feel. And I know that it's always about him, but somehow I keep finding myself still trying to be good enough for him. I know I never will be good enough in his eyes. It's always going to be the double standard where he can do no wrong, but I am always wrong. Why do I keep trying to meet his expectations when they are unrealistic, unreasonable, and cruel?

3:39 PM  

Narcisstist, psychopath, sociopath on and on. Mri's checking to see if a person's brain processes emotions such as love, empathy, gratefulness etc. Yes, this can be seen on an mri. See, people with this type of brain functioning are like a "flatline". Their brains simply don't process these emotions.

For those of us trying to understand their (psychopaths) "reasoning" is impossible with the parameters of psychology we are given. It's all a lie quite frankly. We really need to toss out most of the crap we shove down people's throats and start fresh. Starting with mri testing. THIS sounds crazy doesn't it? But I'm sure Freud's garbage did too.

Look at all the education we have and access to information on abuse, bullying etc. and yet I don't see it getting much better. Why is this? Why haven't we eradicated abuse and evil? It seems like it's getting worse actually, like the use of the internet has simply given people a quicker and more anonymous way to be even MORE abusive.

So as a last resort, or if you're looking for a "new" perspective, check out the Bible. 2 Timothy 3: 1-5 "1But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them."

6:26 PM  


Trauma Bonding

Get yourself into counseling ASAP and go No Contact asap! Please

11:36 PM  

This article is spot on. I also looked at the Light House site this article came from.

Thank you !!!! I am in the process of planning to go No Contact and subsequently divorcing a narcissist. The Light House site gives great advice on going No Contact - just what I needed right now.

Yes - yes - yes - trauma bonding and gaslighting / brainwashing. If not for sites like these I would be making so many mistakes right now.

9:38 AM  

Because you are constantly being tripped up by your ability to feel and to view things logically. Narcissists are all around me and I can now recognize them but I don't know exactly how to deal with them. Try your best to remember that it is a demon in the flesh that you are dealing with and not a human. You need to leave secretly asap!! He will attempt to destroy you if he ever finds out what your plans are or if you wait until he is the one that wants out.

12:11 AM  

Bravo!! The scripture you posted, I have it printed on pretty paper and framed. I was reading scriptures on-line and when I came across this one it stood out amongst the was as if the Lord actually spoke the words as I was reading them. At the time, I was deep in the throws of divorce with my narcissitic ex-husband. Since, I have realized that my sister closest to me in age and my mother are both narcie's...too bad I realized this after moving in with the two of them and going into debt due to assisting with my mom's house repairs. Right now I am stuck like Chuck and my sister has turned up the heat...gaslighting, stealing, know the rest and my Narcist mom vouches for her and or condone's the behavior. I hope I survive with my sanity in tact. Prayers needed.

12:27 AM  

Blessings to you..Warning..Be careful and don't get suckered by their fake is only to get something from you or gain your trust to later debase in some for or fashion. Move your belongings away from the shared living quqrters..slowly but surely. Begin with your most dedited possessions first even of they are pictures...they will steal them from you if only because they know that they mean something to you.

12:33 AM  

Great points! I'm so sick of making excuses for malignant narcs! My sis-in-law is married to one of these pieces of work!!!! He pathologically lies constantly! He cheated on her when they first got married, his excuse the bartender gave him too much to drink. His DUI was the polices fault. The woman he cheated with and later come to find out had a ten month affair with...of course it was her fault for being stupid! Or of course it's how women dress. His latest kick is blaming banks, credit card companies, clients, society in general for his garbage. I told her not to marry him!!! I got weird vibes around him, huge terrible feeling in my gut. He plays the family man and good person card really well that is when he's not boozing it up at a bar, hitting on or having sex with widowed, single, married, or young women. But, all his buddies claim to have sex addiction, so that's the excuse on that! He also has her in well over half a million in loans for his startup ventures. Why should he care he will just go bankrupt and sit in penalty box with a big of evil smile on his evil face. Both his previous exs tried to warn her about his Mr. Nice Guy routine that would only last 6 months or so after marriage them his true all about him only colors would come flying out!!!! He flat out lied to the counselor in a group therapy we went to! He claimed it's all women are nuts and crazy he just wasn't good at picking the proper kind. Well gee he's been through enough of them in all shapes and sizes funny how it's never his fault! Amazing how perfectly sane can be driven more mad than the narcs after having to put up with their lies! I wish she would wake up!

12:17 AM  

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