This is an excellent article from "Psychology Today" that helps us understand how the narcissist perpetuates his own worst fear - being alone - by the way he responds to the people in his life who care about him the most.
"Blaming and excessively criticizing others to shore up an extraordinarily vulnerable ego--and reacting antagonistically in the face of anything regarded as critical of themselves--they keep others at a distance that renders any true intimacy impossible. The way they "set things up" in relationships, particularly intimate relationships, makes their self-created dilemma unsolvable."
This does not give us permission to feel sorry for them. Only serves to help further our UNDERSTANDING of why narcissists behave the way they do and why we must stay away to protect our own sanity.
Leon Seltzer sums it up perfectly:
"So they remain emotionally and spiritually unfulfilled, hungry for a nebulous something they can't even conceive. Lacking the ego strength that would allow them to be genuinely vulnerable to others--the prerequisite for the intimacy they secretly long for--their relationships demonstrate a level of detachment not entirely dissimilar from their original so-hurtful disconnection from their parents. But this time they're not just the victim but the 'perpetrator,' too.
~ Leon F. Seltzer, Ph.D
Please take a read!
by Leon F. Seltzer, Ph.D