A Narcissistic Marriage
In this article we attempt to briefly identify the common factors evident in a narcissistic spouse. Written by someone who knows....
A Narcissistic Marriage
Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), is a common mental dysfunction where the person has an unhealthy self-image which leads them to create a superior, exalted image of themselves in the eyes of others, and will maintain that image at all costs, even to the point of damaging the person who lies nearest to them: their spouse and kids. You may be in a marriage that is really narcissistic, but because you may not be aware of the symptoms of this disorder, you have accepted to be true, the blame and guilt that has been thrown at you by your spouse. I have listed here just ten out of many symptoms of NPD, to create an awareness.
This is what NPD looks like:
1. In public you will be ignored, while your spouse will give his attention to others, pretending to be the perfect husband/father. However at home, he is sarcasstic; insulting; verbally abusive; putting you down and others too; bursts out in fits of anger where your physical safety is threatened.
2. They lack empathy, and are callous. They have no regard for your feelings, or the suffering that you and your kids are going through as a result of their behaviour. In fact all they really care about, and are caught up in is how superior they look in the sight of people and they spare no pains to make sure you know it too! Their putting you down is their way of making themselves feel and look good. Their spirit of grandiosity is the reason why your conversations are always centered upon things that THEY want to speak on, and they will show little interest in what you have to say on the matter, unless it is in agreement with what they want to haer from you.
3. They are highly vain. Do not be fooled if they initially come across as someone who has no self value. Thye may even express these sentiments in words, but be sure that that is their way of extracting praise and excessive admiration from you. In fact, they are OBSSESSED with admiration, to the extent that a woe will land upon you, the spouse, if you dare not recognise an achievement, quality, talent, skill or beauty that they believe is worthy of constant praise!
4. They MUST be agreed with, for in their own little world of unreality, THEY ARE ALWAYS RIGHT. So questioning their judgment on an issue, is to be totally avoided.
5. They are very charming and can easily win the confidence of people with their convincing facade. This is why victims of a narcissistic spouse find that the friends, and possibly family that they once had, end up believing the bad picture that the narcisst paints of you; and you find yourself isolated, with no support. They do this to justify their own behaviour and to gain sympathy, leading your loved ones to believe that THEY are the victims. Their deceptive ways do not stop there: not only do they convince others and even themselves that they are telling the truth, but if you don't know what you are dealing with, they can actually make you believe that you are an irrational, uncapable of thinking straight, human being; that you are in need of mental help. Unfortunately, people with NPD CANNOT cannot see that they have a problem. The dysfunctional traits of character that they have, they accuse YOU of. Picture this:
Imagine a person looking in a mirror and they are accusing, blaming and criticisizing the image in the mirror. Who are they really talking about? THEMSELVES!
The truth of the analogy that I just painted, is simple enough: WHATEVER THE NARCISST IS FALSELY ACCUSING YOU OF, IS A DIRECT INDICATION OF WHO HE/SHE IS. So if they are telling you and everyone else that you are mentally ill, they are talking about themselves. If they go around making wild reports that you are an unfit parent, and maybe even go as far to say abusive, well that is a signal to what kind of parent THEY really are to their kids. By the way, NPD spouses, increase their power by the use of the authorities. It is not uncommon for them to use the police, lawyers, social workers to accomplish their purpose of destroying your reputation, so that your cries against their behaviour will have no weight.
6. They are habitual liars. If your spouse creates a fight when you try to discuss money, a red flag should pop up in your mind that they may be hiding credit cards or money transactions from you. They will pretend that these fights are your fault, but this is really an attempt to cover their own guilt by trying to put the blame on you.
7. Narcissistic individuals are obsessed by the fantasy of an ideal and perfect relationship. You should be aware that he/she may have secret crushes or be having affairs, which include 'cyber' affairs (all the while lying that they are single); and using pornography. If you notice their mind OFTEN appears elsewhere, where they look unavailable; and they show other symptoms of this disorder, including withholding from you your marital rights on a consistent basis, then this may be the reason.
8. Not all narcissists are physically abusive, it is a significant indicator however that you may end up part of a violent marriage. The physical abuse is NOT ALWAYS PERPETRATED BY THE NARCISSIST either. It is natural to become very angry with someone who manipulates and puts you down.
9. There is one advice that is warned against acting upon hastily: If you decide to separate from your companion, DO NOT LET THEM KNOW OF YOUR INTENTIONS!!! Sufferers of NPD, are notorious for resorting to ANY MEASURE to keep their 'loved' one from leaving them. Yes, hear me when I say that YOUR LIFE AND THE LIFE OF YOUR CHILDREN MAY BE IN DANGER SHOULD YOUR SPOUSE KNOW THAT YOU WANT OUT. This is exactly how to provoke and escalate rage and physical (and emotional) abuse and domestic violence in couples with these problems. It may also result in stalking. Even worse THE PERPETRATOR OF THE VIOLENCE AND STALKING MIGHT BE YOU! This is because partners of narcissists are often enraged by how callously their partners can 'cast them aside' with no explanation.
10. Should divorce be the result, you won't only have the emotional and mental torture, grief and anguish that comes as a by-product, but mingle that with an NPD spouse, and you have the ingredients for an explosive, tenacious battle. The legal system can be a very effective battering tool. The verbal abuser becomes enraged when faced with a partner who has found the power to leave and feels justified in his behavior. He or she may want to punish you and this can go on for a very long time.
Often the abuser who sees he is losing control will escalate the methods of control and abuse. The lies will be bolder and he may manipulate with more intensity. He has a fierce need to regain power and control. They have tunnel vision when you have become the designated enemy.
CRY OUT TO GOD AND HE WILL OPEN UP A WAY FOR DELIVERANCE. I KNOW THAT FOR SURE!