Types of Narcissists

While there is only one official diagnosis for narcissists, there are different "variants" of narcissism or different types of narcissists, and narcissism comes in varying degrees of severity.

A 2012 review of the research on narcissism identified several of these variants including grandiose narcissists, who seem to require excessive praise and attention, and vulnerable narcissists, who tend to have a lot of anxiety and need a lot of supportive attention. 

As mentioned in an earlier post, across the variants of narcissism - malignant narcissists are by far the most damaging.

Source: https://www.verywellmind.com/how-to-recognize-a-narcissist-4164528

True vs False Repentance

According to the Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament (Louw & Nida) the word repentance means, to change one’s way of life as the result of a complete change of thought and attitude with regard to sin and righteousness. 

In repentance, a person is given a true sense of the heinous nature of sin and, hating it, they turn to God through Christ with the desire to part ways with it. It is a gift that God gives to us and true repentance leads to eternal life (2 Tim. 2:25).

False repentance is scary because it can trick us into thinking we’ve truly repented when, in reality, we’ve only found more crafty ways to hold on to our sin.

Why bring this up you ask … If you have ever changed your mind about anything, then you understand the basis of one of the most important spiritual principles in the Bible: repentance. When someone pretends to confess and turn away from sin, but in the depths of his heart means only to appease anger and escape consequences, it leaves in its wake an especially sensitive kind of confusion and pain.

Deep thinking for a Saturday morning eh? Not really.

The Hebrew Sabbath, the seventh day of the week, is often spoken of loosely as "Saturday" but in the Hebrew calendar a day begins at sunset and not at midnight so the timing seemed right.

What is a notice of disassociation?

If you have shared finances with somebody in the past, they might show up on your credit record. If you don't want this to happen, you can apply for a notice of disassociation.

A notice of disassociation is something you can put on your credit report to let lenders know that you’re no longer financially associated with someone. You can get Equifax, Experian & TransUnion to add a notice of dissociation to your report by filling in a dispute form (of sorts).

You may not have heard of financial disassociation, but it can make a real difference to you if your current or ex-spouse or partner starts to incur a high level of debt.

Why?

Because it can affect your ability to get credit in the future too.

If your current or ex-partner or spouse has lots of debt, or they’re paying late, part-paying or missing payments out altogether, it doesn’t directly affect your credit score, but it is something that the new lender will look at. The lender may see this as a red flag and decide that lending you any more money is too risky.

Applying for disassociation is easy to do! This allows you to remove the link between you and your ex, so that their financial issues no longer affect your chances of getting credit. You can access the forms you require here:

Experian

Call credit

Equifax

Pearls before Swine

New to me this week … the expression usually expressed in the negative proverbial form - 'don't cast your pearls before swine', and is found in the Bible, Matthew 7:6, first appearing in English bibles in Tyndale's Bible, 1526:

The biblical text is generally interpreted to be a warning by Jesus to his followers that they should not offer biblical doctrine to those who were unable to value and appreciate it.

In other words, to offer something valuable or good to someone who does not know its value i.e. I'm afraid you're casting pearls before swine with your good advice - she just won't listen.

Leaving A Narcissistic Partner Behind

Having a narcissist for a new or existing partner can well and truly mess with your head and the result is likely to be a number of limiting beliefs that you have about yourself, them, and your relationship. For instance, you might believe that:

  1. They truly love you

  2. Your love for them can prevail given time

  3. You are to blame for the ending of the relationship

  4. They bring you happiness that you will not find elsewhere

  5. Things can go back to how they were in the beginning

  6. They have seen the errors in their ways once and for all

  7. You can fix them and that it is your duty to stay and help

  8. They feel the same way that you do

Not one of these things is true. They are incapable of love, meaning your love can never prevail. You are not to blame, and you can find greater happiness elsewhere. Things can never go back to how they were and stay that way because they have not seen any error in their ways. You cannot fix them and nor is it your responsibility, and they most certainly don’t feel the same way as you.

The narcissist in your relationship will have tried to shatter the image you hold of yourself and remake it as he sees fit for his purpose. It may take professional therapy, or it may just be something you achieve with the help of your loved ones, but picking up the fragments of your true self and putting them back together is important if you are to avoid similar relationships in the future.

Another good piece: Coping Mechanisms When Leaving A Narcissistic Partner Behind

Control through Coercion

Coercion is the practice of forcing another party to act in an involuntary manner by use of threats or force. It involves a set of various types of forceful actions that violate the free will of an individual to induce a desired response, for example: a bully demanding lunch money from a student or the student gets beaten.

These actions may include extortion, blackmail, torture, threats to induce favours, or even sexual assault. In law, coercion is codified as a duress crime. Such actions are used as leverage, to force the victim to act in a way contrary to their own interests.

Coercion may involve the actual infliction of physical pain/injury or psychological harm in order to enhance the credibility of a threat. The threat of further harm may lead to the cooperation or obedience of the person being coerced.

In psychological coercion, the threatened injury regards the victim's relationships with other people … threats to husbands, wives, children, brothers, sisters etc

The most obvious example is blackmail, where the threat consists of the dissemination of damaging information. However, many other types are possible e.g. "emotional blackmail", which typically involves threats of rejection from or disapproval by a peer-group or creating feelings of guilt/obligation via a display of anger or hurt by someone whom the victim loves or respects. Another example is coercive persuasion.

Nasty thing that.

Love Bombing Part 2

Found a great set of articles on the Conscious Rethink website as a part of my continued my research path through the areas of fraud, identification theft and social engineering.

Picking up on yesterday’s post, I’ve been looking more at the broad term of ‘Love Bombing’; ‘an attempt to accelerate the birth and growth of feelings within the victim by creating an intense atmosphere of affection and adoration. It is designed to disarm an individual’s natural guardedness so that they do not question the direction and speed a relationship is headed in’ according to the Conscious Rethink website.

It does this by adding elements of confusion, flattery, dependency, and an air of destiny into the mix.

Confusion occurs because of the sheer amount of communication that takes place between the couple; ceaseless texting, frequent phone calls, interaction on social media, and a strong wish to meet in person as often as possible.

It can feel utterly overwhelming to be on the receiving end of such a bombardment, one that is designed to convince the victim of the unique and special bond they have with the narcissist.

Having never experienced anything quite like it before, the victim will start to believe that this is something special, something good, a romance like you see in the movies – a whirlwind of excitement, both exhilarating and terrifying.

Flattery is present in virtually all courtship, but in the case of love bombing, it transcends to a whole other level. Every communication must include multiple compliments to seduce the victim and provide an almost irresistible feel-good factor that they will find hard to surrender.

When the victim constantly hears how beautiful, wonderful, and perfect the other party thinks they are, it gives their ego a real boost and causes physical and chemical changes in their brains. These only serve to cement their attraction to the narcissist.

Quite often the victim will be someone who suffers from low self-esteem (an ideal target for a narcissist) and so being complimented in this way may feel unnatural to them – even fake – but they will be too caught up to realize the true purpose of all the kind words.

Dependency is something that the narcissist will often attempt to introduce just a few weeks into the process of dating. Despite being in this embryonic stage, they will begin to proclaim how sure they are of the relationship, how much they enjoy spending time with the victim, and even how they are falling in love with them.

They push the victim on their own feelings to have them reciprocate declarations of love and affection. They do this to further confuse the victim about how they truly feel.

They start to devour more and more of the victim’s time and energy – preventing them from seeing other people quite so often. This isolation may be noted by the friends and family of the victim, but it is often waived away as mere passion by the victim themselves.

 By controlling access to love and affection, a narcissist can put themselves in a position of great importance. As contact with others diminishes, the only source of warmth and love available to the victim comes from their newly found partner.

The longer this continues, the deeper under the spell they fall; eventually they start to see the narcissist as someone they are unable to live without.

More to come on this interesting topic …

Love Bombing

When you openly advertise your interest in a romantic relationship, you also signal your availability to any circling narcissists or social predators. If one senses that your guard is down, he or she may assume that you are an easier target for manipulation. And one of the most effective ways of manipulating a potential partner is through flattery and "love bombs."

Love bombing is the practice of overwhelming someone with signs of adoration and attraction — think flattering comments, tokens of affection, or love notes on the mirror, kitchen table, or windshield, and you’re beginning to get the picture. It’s texts that increase in frequency as they increase in romantic fervour. Its surprise appearances designed to manipulate you into spending more time with the bomber — and, not coincidentally, less time with others, or on your own.

When someone tells you just how special you are, it can be intoxicating, at first.

However, when a person uses such comments to keep your focus trained on him or her, or to keep bringing you back in if you’ve started to back off, it could be a case of manipulation.

Not everyone who whispers sweet nothings in your ear is a narcissist or predator, of course, but if you’re feeling that something just isn’t right about the person or your relationship, these constant reminders of "how good you are together" — when you suspect that you really aren’t — can be an effort to keep you tethered.

It’s often the first line used by a potential abuser.

Narcissists are known for their skills at manipulation, as much as their penchant for self-love. They may use flattery and attention as tools to build themselves up as the perfect partner, the better to gain your trust, affection — and, ultimately, adoration. Narcissists often learn through experience that once partners see through their facades, the relationship may self-destruct.

Once they have convinced you of how good the two of you are together, a narcissist will try to shape your role in the relationship into a member of their "supporting cast."

Narcissists move quickly to avoid detection, so the more someone tries to flatter you into submission, the more diligently you need to explore their motives.

The more you read from the Psychology Today article, you more you want to read.

Traits of a Sociopath

Although I started researching this morning on the differences between a psychopath and a sociopathSociopaths are often called psychopaths and vice versa but there are differences between a psychopath and a sociopath. ... And while sociopaths and psychopaths do share some traits, sociopathy (antisocial personality disorder or ASP) is generally considered less severe than psychopathy … became more interested to look further at sociopathic tendencies more specifically.

Also see … How to tell if you’re dating a Psychopath, according to a woman who married one.

To be diagnosed with ASP, a person must be at least 18 years old and have a history of aggression, rule-breaking and deceit that dates to childhood. Here are some red flags to watch out for (see Sociopath Traits):

  1. Symptom: Lack of Empathy

  2. Symptom: Difficult Relationships … Rather than forge connections with the people in their lives, they might try to exploit them for their own benefit through deceit, coercion and intimidation.

  3. Symptom: Manipulativeness …  Sociopaths tend to try and seduce and ingratiate themselves with the people around them for their own gain, or for entertainment.

  4. Symptom: Deceitfulness … They often feel comfortable lying to get their own way, or to get themselves out of trouble. They also tend to embellish the truth when it suits them.

  5. Symptom: Callousness … Some might be openly aggressive and violent.

  6. Symptom: Hostility … Sociopaths are not only hostile themselves, but they are more likely to interpret others’ behaviour as hostile, which drives them to seek revenge.

  7. Symptom: Irresponsibility … They may have a disregard for financial or social obligations; not paying child support and regularly taking time off work.

  8. Symptom: Impulsivity … Making spur of the moment decisions with no thoughts for the consequences is part of everyday life.

  9. Symptom: Risky Behaviour … Combine irresponsibility, impulsivity and a need for instant gratification and its not surprising that sociopaths get involved in risky behaviour.

The conclusion of the article outlined above … if you know someone with ASP, the best thing to do is steer clear. Avoid them. Avoid them as best as you can because they are going to complicate your life.

Conspiracy Theories

According to the Cambridge Dictionary, a ‘conspiracy’ is ‘the activity of secretly planning with other people to do something bad or illegal’. In American English and from the same source, ‘a secret plan made by two or more people to do something bad, illegal, or against someone’s wishes.’ In Business English, ‘a secret agreement made between two or more people or groups to do something bad or illegal that will harm someone else’; once again from the Cambridge Dictionary Online.

I thought to check having been questioned on the use of the C word in a passing conversation recently.