Often we are not aware of Narcissism in Action until we are the recipients of the nastiness. As we know, no one believes us. The manipulator has a whole network of buds that they support with flattery and fake emotion and 'help'. There is no way to win against a cheat and a sneak, until they expose themselves.
Often, that person passes thru people's lives superficially as a great human being. Heck, more people would attend their funeral than mine! But then, maybe not.....Sometimes, they get exposed.
But even in exposure, many come to their defense, and the 'whistle-blower' is disbelieved. Here is an example of unmasking. Certain parts have been edited to protect the innocent. The author was anonymous, and their post was deleted at another site. ~Invicta
Subject: my 5 cents worth
femfree, I've always had my doubts that your husband is NPD, never mind AsPD. He is undoubtedly bipolar, but what you describe below is not a N showing his true colors, dropping his false mask, but a bipolar who stopped his meds and became ill again.
His son is a terrible and callous man who obviously hates your husband and doesn't appreciate his own children, but that describes him, not your husband. Outside of his illness, I have never heard you say anything about your husband that would explain your drive to identify with victims of Ns and Ps.[my emphasis ~I]
I know with all the collecting quotes that you do that you cannot have failed to miss that bipolars are often misdiagnosed as personality disordered because typical bipolar manic behavior is identical to much extreme narcissistic behavior, the grandiosity, the hostility, the paranoia, all of it.
In fact, very many so-called BPD patients lose most of their pathological behavior when bipolar meds are given and their mood swings stabilized, and they are finally able to behave differently and can be helped by therapy. More so-called narcissists would similarly be recognized as chemically treatable bipolars, not NPD, if we could only get more of them into treatment and get them to stay on their meds.
A bipolar on meds is still bipolar and without years of support and therapy, they may never easily pass as normal, for bipolar is an inherited illness of the brain.
NPD....is a very difficult diagnosis to make, and even a stack of "how he acted" reports still cannot tell anyone, even a psychiatrist, whether a person is or is not NPD. Yes, he could say, "that is narcissistic behavior", but he could not truthfully say "he is NPD". It takes considering -and then ruling out- all the other possible diagnoses and observing a person -first hand- over a long period of time....
A cigar may always be a cigar, but a narcissist (narcissistically acting person) is not always NPD. Sometimes bipolar illness or other conditions just looks and acts like NPD as any psychiatrist could tell you.
Here is what you recently wrote about your bipolar NH
Hi..... A bit of my own story. When my NH [that is, husband ~I] (bi-polar) went off meds, he became quiet and sullen over a period of weeks, his paranoia began to escalate. I was subjected to much abuse in the form of "The Look" that he would give me, for no reason. He began to clear off his business desk of papers. I confronted him one day and asked...why this was happening and if he thought I was going through his papers. He said No, he just wanted it cleared off. This is very unusual behaviour but I had nipped any accusation of me in the bud.
One day he flipped got up off the couch and walked about 10 feet away from me and stood there with his face reddening and his hands clenched into fists and said intensely and angrily "If I don't get out of here I'm going to..." he never finished that sentence and the next sound I heard was ...tires squealing on the pavement. He erupted into a full-blown mania and my marriage was ripped to pieces, ended and I was left reeling with this unexpected behaviour. I will never know how close he could have come to doing more...: This last sentence is pure speculative dramatization and designed to fit into the murder thread. Through the years I have seen you do this repeatedly as though trying to make him fit in with the NPDs many have had to live with. Manic bipolars can certainly sometimes be violently dangerous, but I cannot, however, recall where you have ever described your husband as having a history of violence towards anyone at all.
You do a great service for a lot of survivors by your hard work in finding and presenting information and on your ...forums....you have a lot of good information and links. I am not saying that you provide bad advice or bad links, only that no one can help others properly assess their respective situations when they can't even do so for their self[my emphasis~Invicta]
This forum is not unique in having those who feel that they have learned so much here that they can diagnose NPD in even the most brief of contacts with those persons who arrive here wondering if they themselves are NPD, something we witnessed here only this past week. It is natural to want to support victims, but supporting victims is not identical to arming a lynch mob with lack of knowledge and misrepresentation.[My emphasis ~Invicta]
my 5 cents worth
[Update: The post went unanswered and was buried in the archives with all other evidence, deleted from the main board, and even with evidence, followers have rallied round. It has been swept under the carpet, which is what all good manipulators ensure when spinning their webs. Deny deny distort reality, and let those you have worked on come to your defence. ~Invicta]
[A response when there is unmasking and they want to invalidate your being and experience in retaliation]
Sent: 5/15/2003 8:17 AM [to this MB]
Actually, I can't see that death is any easier than the N experience. Sometimes we call the N "mine, MyN, our" because we have met and lived with or cohabited with our Ns. They were more than just a cyber fling gone sour. Usually it's poor recognition of expectations that makes the cyberfling so out of proportion to reality.
I guess being hurt by an N whether on a message board or in real life huts, but I don't see that any connection should be made to comparing it to 'death would be easier'.
Give us a break invicta!!
you make a good point
But this did not happen to you- total destruction. You have your mind and heart and many resources. You are still standing and you know what you stand for. You wear the equivalent of a cosmos full of purple hearts. You not only survived, but you will thrive. Remember that what you overcame is beyond the ken of most people and does break totally, lesser people. But though your heart is broken and you feel fragile and shattered, the essential you remains intact. Remember what you faced and that you are alive to tell of it. Remember that what you have accomplished is awesome- for you may have bent, but you did not totally break. For you are here, now.
Sent:5/15/2003 11:02 AM
I know who posted this and then immediately unsubscribed. This is an example of the wannabe who can't help but end with a quote :).
How they do it:
Note the vindictive nature of the "cyberfling gone sour" comment, and the following comment reducing my experience to some sort of pseudoanalysis which also obliquely imparts blame to me; and then there is the comment belittling my feeling that death would have been easier for me. This all serves to invalidate the entire experience. And yet there is a quote to flatter at the end, it seems, but really, in effect to make them look impartial and reasonable and fair. Lovely example of undermining and confusing.
Has this happened to you with the Ns? And can you imagine this person as your friend or fellow member?
I will be adding this to one of the pages - how unmasking brings out the vicious, manipulative nature of someone challenged.
It's all an education, imo.
Hugs to you all,
From a self-proclaimed "victim" follower by proxy/guru wannabee for victims :
From: femfree Sent: 6/24/2003 9:27pm
I guess I have this malicious streak in me when it comes to Ns. I can't help but wonder if we can trap them in their own game by appearing to be an interested 'partner' and get them to say something we can use.
We need all the help we can get and if they can provide it -- so much the better.
[In other words, engage in deceit and manipulation, and it is justified-pretend to be their buddy and then use their words against them. Moreover, it is defined as "help", as if other avenues of real "help" would be inadequate. This basically advises unethical behaviour, to gain power over someone, justified by the fact that one must protect oneself (in reality, get the upper hand) in any manner possible; as a "victim", one is entitled to use any means possible. I don't think so. This is the kind of stuff only a devious, deceitful, manipulative, psychopathic type might say, IMO.]
More here: Narcissism and Deceitfulness