The Betrayal of the Bystanders
Why do we feel so wronged by the people who believe a narcissist's lies about us? There are a number of reasons, but here is one of the biggest.
It's because their credulity isn't innocent. If a stranger believes some outrageous lie about us, we aren't surprised, and we don't feel wronged by them. But if someone who knows us believes that same lie, we feel betrayed. Guess why? It's because they have betrayed us by believing that lie about us.
For example, if someone has known you for ten years, they see your track record of conduct for the last ten years. In other words, they have seen how you conduct yourself along this way of life we're bound upon.
No, they don't see everything you've said and done. But they have seen a lot. They have seen you react to many various stimuli.
That track record of yours sketches your character in their eyes. This representation of what kind of person you are is based on your CONDUCT (your words and deeds), not on mere hearsay about you.
So no one should be able to come along and tell them JUST ANYTHING about you.
For example, if you are a gentle person, in ten years that will show. Many times. The people you interact with daily will see sample after sample of you reacting gently to things that most others would react more harshly to.
So no narcissist should be able to come along and insinuate that you are violent.
Likewise if you are honest. In ten years that will show. Many times. The people you interact with daily will see sample after sample of you reacting honestly to things that most others would hedge the truth about.
So no narcissist should be able to come along and insinuate that you are a liar.
Likewise if you are sensible. In ten years that will show. Many times. The people you interact with daily will see sample after sample of you reacting sensibly to things that most others would show poor judgment about.
So no narcissist should be able to come along and insinuate that you are crazy and imagining things.
To believe these things about you they have to unknow everything they know about you. That is, they have to unknow you. They have to revise history. They have to erase that track record of yours.
And that track record is your life. They have to wipe it out.
That takes your life.
Which is why they call it "character assassination."
Your whole life goes up in smoke. And a figment of the imagination is substituted for it.
Those people are not innocent. Indeed, check it out: that is the Original Sin.
Eve committed it when she chose to believe that God was the liar, not the slithering sidewinder who snuck up to her and said, "Really? God told you that? That you would fall if you swallowed this stuff?"
Then Adam committed it worse when he swallowed it, too, just to agree with Eve.
The serpent did the same thing to God that the narcissist does to his victims, whom he slanders to discredit. Adam and Eve did the same thing to God that people do to a narcissist's victim when they believe the lie.
The narcissit's lie is always ironic. For the narcissist is out to smear one of your outstanding GOOD QUALITIES with the semblance of one of his own VICES. So, the allegation is always preposterous. No one who knows you should be fooled by it.
Because it isn't believable. They should know better. But they willfully don't. Because the lie is juicy.
And so, there's nothing like a narc attack to show you who your real friends are.