Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Are narcissists typically hung up on "bad" and "good?"

Somebody asked me whether narcissists are "hung up on bad and good," judging everything all the time. It's an intriguing question.

They are extremely judgmental people. I'm sure that's because judging others is THE act of playing God. For, what is a God but a judge of people's worth? He keeps (saves/preserves) those he deems worth keeping and trashes (fires/damns) those he deems not worth keeping. That's what he's there for -- to judge everybody. He judges his creatures like a writer judges hers, deleting any that aren't just right. In fact, in the ancient language of the Old Testament, there's but one word for "god" and "judge" and "king" and "master."

So, it's easy to see why narcissists are so judgmental.

They are judgmental of themselves too. I knew one who would get thoroughly disgusted with himself if he stumbled or made a mistake in front of you. He'd refer to himself with utter contempt in chastising himself for the least little thing -- as if him making a little mistake was a big deal.

Well, I guess God Almighty making an error is a big deal. But for us mere mortals it's not.

This man had to be perfect -- at least when anyone was looking.

I have noticed this morality hang-up in a narcissist I knew very well. She would keep asking me what the "moral" thing to do in this or that matter.

It was strange, and I didn't know what to make of it. Not that it's strange to ever be asked this question by a friend in a real moral dilemma, but when she asked it, it was always a stupid question. I thought she was pimping me -- though I was baffled at why she would do that -- because I just could not believe a grown woman could be so devoid of moral sense that she had to ask such stupid questions.

Often, I'd just reply, "Well, do whatever you want," because it was that kind of matter -- the type where whatever you want to do is fine, because you should have your choice. If you don't want to go to the play, don't go to the play. Who needs to be told that? Who asks what's the moral thing to do about stuff like that?

All she cared about was appearances -- what it would look like to people if she did this or that. Of course, we're all motiveated by this to some extent, but she is motivated by it to a bizarre extent. To the point that she views stuff like this as a moral issue. Hence, she makes a moral issue out of things that aren't even remotely a moral issue.

She seemed to view morality as nothing but an impression you want to make on others. Which makes sense, I guess. Everything a narcissist does is for effect. Nothing has any objective reality to them: it's all smoke and mirrors. Imagination. Pretend. They don't even haves selves: they have images instead. They IDENTIFY with this phastasm.

That is such a profound mental virus that it must cross up their thinking on many things. For, to them everything is all about nothing but appearances. Seeming. Looking good.

She should have just asked me what would make her look better, more grand and noble.

So, I think this woman had morality confused with making a good impression on other people. Unfortunately, doing the moral thing often gets you condemned = makes you look bad. No wonder I've never seen a narcissist with the moral courage to ever do that. If they see an opportunity to do something shitty to someone and get called a "good person" for it, look out.

Another thing I've noticed is that everybody's all bad or all good in their eyes. And -- boom -- someone can go from all good to all bad, or vice versa, overnight. For no discernable reason.

In that, again, they are just like little children = they are as mentally immature as little children. We've all seen little children hit a toy and say something like, "Bad toy, bad toy!" (like "Bad dog, bad dog!") for disappointing them in some way.

Narcissists seem to have never developed a more mature idea about what "bad" and "good" mean.

To a baby, Mamma's all good when she's there and all bad when she's not = all good when he's basking in the glow of her mirroring eyes smiling on him and all bad when she's depriving him of that joy she exists to shower upon him.

Narcissists never outgrow that.

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At 2:35 PM, Anonymous Dandelion said...

As with other aspects of their behavior, narcissists probably vacillate between the extremes of judging others/themselves according to the mood they're in or the effect that they're trying to convey at the moment.

When they're in the idealization phase, thinking about being a good spouse/parent and acting that part to win you over and get their mirroring, they can be almost paralyzed to act without knowing what you think.

Conversely, when they're in the devaluation phase, they are the supreme judge of what the situation requires and others' opinions (or logic or reality) don't mean squat. The mirroring that they're after in this case is to be seen as strong-willed and protecting their interests, rather than being a good parent/spouse. (They can't reconcile or balance the two concepts.)

At 8:54 PM, Blogger Kathy K said...

Thanks, GG. I really appreciate it.

As for them losing everything, I have never seen anything but perhaps poetic justice done in some cases. True, they are miserable inside and empty. But, take for example the Bishop of Beauvais who committed judicial fraud against Joan of Arc. (She had lead the French to his city, and he, being on the side of the enemy had to flee = lost a lot of money.) He died an honored man. She died regarded as the scum of the earth, forgotten by her own people. If Charles VII's reputation hadn't much later depended on it, she would still be regarded as such today.

It deeply offends our sense of justice, but that's the way it is. They get away with it = evil triumphs over good. Often forever.

On the other hand -- yes, if you know them well, you can tell they live in hell. But sometimes I really wonder if they mind.

Yes, they lose everyone, they make horrible business decisions, they have periodic upheavals having to flee one job/town/household to infest and parasitize another. But do they mind? No one but themselves matters to them. Others have but bit walk-on parts in their life. Like an extra in a crowd scene in a show all about themselves. So, I doubt they mind losing what they lose. In any case, they'd never admit it. Even to themselves.

On the other hand, none of us would want to trade places with them, would we? Being like that inside is unthinkable.

At 7:11 AM, Blogger Not Available said...

You're welcome, Kathi and I mean every word. You are an especially gifted writer, and what I appreciate most about your blog is that is is so evenhanded. It is incredibly frustrating for anyone who decides NOT to take it, and who squares off with their aggressors (sic...how many "g"s?); you personally probably would believe, but precious few believed me in my assertion that my community IS a community of careless twits...one after the other after the other, self-centered, incoherent children who...I love this...have their brains crammed into their skulls backwards and upside down (!!); yet who I love very dearl, AND FEEL SORRY FOR. Sick, I know. But they're little babies!! How do you hate infants?
Moreover, how do you get them the F%%% out of your way? ;-)
You get that, right? To have all your friends suddenly drop away and reveal what's underneath ALL of their social veneers...I...uh...well...it's alright to remember I'm strong and incredible, right? My self-worth was riddles with bullet holes, but I have not only survived; I am thriving and they're in for a big surprise. Please keep writing, you have a gift.
...plus, I guess I was just reaching out to you personally for some "reassurance" no other human can offer me: that friendships that were forged in that place BEFORE the ALIENS showed their true faces WILL survive their lies and poor behavior, and that what is real cannot be destroyed by lunatics. It just takes time for them to expose THEMSELVES for what they are to everybody, right?
I dunno. I want to make decisions based on a love, and UNITY based paradigm, but I just cannot see a future for both MY success and THEIRS, because MY success will be much shinier and attract more...wait for it...ATTENTION...yes, ATTENTION...I would have gotten some. Can't have that!
Thanks for listening and sorry for the long comment. It's YOUR blog! XO

At 8:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been a long-time reader of your site - it's always been incredibly insightful and helpful (more so than most of the books I've read on this subject) - but is always growing more beautiful and interactive every month. Thank you for sharing your insights - it's been extraordinarily helpful.

At 7:54 AM, Blogger Not Available said...

Hey Kathi,
You're still amazing but could you please delete my first comment here? Calling people names and "a plague" doesn't help my healing, and I do not wish to act with such a pronounced viciousness. That was them, not me. Thank you.

At 7:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My ex husband would say, "I've been a bad boy", with that little boy devilish smile, attempting to elicit sympathy. One of my "crimes" against the other MNP, was I didn't call him, "big boy".

At 9:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a classic narcissist. I have ruined my own life and risen from the ashes to prey again. I have mentally and emotionally abused mainly women for years. Of course, I know right from wrong, good from evil. Frankly, we don't care.


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