I read on there and other places so many blogs that talk about people who are just terrible people, treat people and their partners horribly, cheat, lie, act out in devious and highly manipulative ways.
I don't dispute this happens alot...but the "tie" to actual pathological narcissism seems not always an easy connection to make. Just because he/she is an asshole, does not make him a narc. In fact, it really does not matter in the end. If someone treats you badly, get out.
But I thought it would be intriguing to explore how many others experienced slightly different scenarios, or at least similar to mine.
If you read Valkin, many narcs are actually quite passive in their abuse and not OUT there constantly and actively DOING stuff to others. They are disordered in ways that actually are hard to pinpoint - unless you lived with it day in and day out for a long time. Manipulation - YES...but are they constantly and strategically plotting evil ways to hurt us....often NO. This is why pathological narcissism is hard to understand and figure out.
In my own case, my EXNH probably did not outwardly cheat, lie, beat me or my daughter, or not live up to his financial and professional obligations.
What he DID DO, was actually WHAT HE DID NOT DO. He subtley, over many years, refrained from actually CARING for me and our daughter in ways that show his genuine capacity to LOVE. He cannot do that. This aspect, where his ability to unconditionally LOVE another represents itself in a thousand ways over years - and IT does appear in abuse...psychological, emotional and sometimes...when I pushed him to show up in our marriage...raging physical abuse and reaction to ME. But - by a long shot - if someone placed a probe down in our life over the years....what one would witness would be the LACKING, not the ACTIVE, OUTWARDLY MANIPULATIVE AND HIDEOUS BEHAVIOR.
Hideous behavior, whether something EVERYONE CAN NAME when they see it, or viewed by only one person or a few people who have lived it and seen the underlying patterns and outcomes for decades - IS STILL HIDEOUS BEHAVIOR.
Yet, I thought it was worthwhile to address this personality disorder "style"....that can appear to others AS IF the LBS or victim is the ONE who is REALLY the problem. This pathological narcissism is extremely evil in its own way...because of its subtle and crazy-making abuse to those around them. It is evident by a slow burn - if you will - of withdrawl,and more of WHAT IS NOT DONE to build a healthy relationship THAN what it is DONE.
This narc is often quiet, passive, not the center of the party, not a criminal, and to most people - a highly functioning, pleasant, responsible citizen. He/she may be attractive, smart, logical, REASONABLE person to all who sees him on a shallow basis.
Its only when one lives with it can the TRUE evil of what it is about shows itself. And it is NO LESS devastating and destructive than those who are courting multiple woman at once, stealing from their "partners", lying about everything under the sun...etc. etc.
I was his SUPPLY in every sense of the word. But it was more for his STABILITY and COMFORT than any other thing. He never had any feeling of genuine partnership or obligation to our life TOGETHER. AND if you have a child with this type of Narc, he will detach even more so....over time.
So, for those who have endured the slow drip type of narcissism...you are not alone. I get it. I lived it for 18 years. And now I'm OUT....and healing from that devastation is the biggest challenge of my life. HUGS>