When they get "Old", what happens?

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#1 Jun 25 - 12AM
loveofmylife's picture

When they get "Old", what happens?

This was under another post...but I have been so curious about this...I'm wondering if any of you have had experience with an N > 55 years old.

I kept thinking things would change: "Surely he must want to be monogamous and settle down by the time he is 40" Then it became 45, then 50, and now it seems it will be 55.

But what happens to them when they are 60 and they are no longer studly looking and gorgeous anymore? Does anyone have experience with them when they hit that age?

What happens? I'd really like to hear from people with experience.

By the time they hit relationship #75, how do they still have the false hope and energy to think "its going to work out"? I wonder when they realize it is a futal attempt? Mine once said about his relationships "i've been circling for 50 years". So he at least says that he sees it, but I wonder if they internalize it?

Maybe when the looks are gone and they can no longer hook anyone that is physically desirable to them (mine is hugely hooked on perfect marathon runner bodies - but that isn't going to last more than 5 more years), Then what?

Jun 27 - 8PM
sarahb's picture

interesting article on aging Ns

Found this interesting article at http://narcissists-suck.blogspot.com/2007/06/aging-narcissist.html The Aging Narcissist You can't hide your true colors as you approach the autumn of your life. ~Author Unknown Growing old requires grace and courage. Aging is a series of insults that you have to take in stride else you become a distasteful burden to yourself and those around you. Grace and courage are not attributes the narcissist possesses at any age so the lack of these virtues become all the more apparent as they grow old. You don't have to live terribly long to observe that age highlights and underlines what you've been all your life. I have met delightful elderly people who are so lovely on the inside it makes their wrinkled faces a pleasure to look upon. I have met the others...those whose wrinkled characters are unfavorably enhanced by their craggy countenances. They become odious inside and out to the observer. The final act on the stage of life seems to be a pulling back on the curtain of the soul. For some, age seems to have taken them by surprise. The series of choices that brought them to old age were not choices that ever anticipated this part of their life. They are bereft of any qualities that would make them capable of being content at the time of lessening that we call aging. The decrepitude of their character is fully exposed by the decrepitude of their bodies. Narcissists do not age well. Whether they depended on their beauty or their intellect, they now find themselves unable to summon the charm or sophistication which enabled them to lure in their sources of supply. They are pathetic and lonely. Neither their bodies nor their minds are impressive in any sense. Withered and shrunken, their minds and bodies are now betraying them. They are daily confronted with the huge gap between what they fantasize themselves to be and what the mirror on the wall and the mirror on your face reflects back to them. The "grandiosity gap", the distance between the narcissist's grandiose vision of himself and reality, is now a yawning and unbridgeable chasm. Constantly angry and dysphoric the narcissist is a curmudgeon that most have abandoned. It isn't your imagination that your narcissist parent is worsened with age. This is the normal and usual progression. What you are witnessing is a three year old trapped in an old man's or old woman's body. The temper tantrum that could pass for cute in a toddler is shockingly and monstrously detestable when performed by the aged. Old age has stripped away the cover that enabled her audience to un-know that an adult was acting like a pre-schooler. No beauty to distract us. No soaring heights of intellect to dazzle and confuse us into compliance. The emperor has no clothes. The sight of the "naked" narcissist almost makes you want to gouge your eyes out. Hideous. The narcissist has been in a life-long battle to defy death. They pretended for years that death could be avoided by refusing to acknowledge its inevitability. I have been struck by the abject fear the narcissist shows when they are forced to contemplate their own mortality. Why is the narcissist so afraid of death? I think the answer is that they fear obliteration and Judgment Day. I think the extremely deprived conscience of the narcissist is never quite able to dismiss the idea that there may be a Day of Reckoning to meet in the hereafter. They would avoid that Day, not by actually making restitution for wrongs done, but by refusing to die. Some of the most tenacious clingers-on to life are narcissists. Some elderly narcissists are so evil and nasty that families find that outside agencies will refuse to deal with them thus leaving the family with no options but to care for the wrinkled beast themselves. If you are dealing with an aged narcissist, you have my deepest sympathies. The enraged and elderly narcissist will find no respite until they are in their coffin. Neither will you.
Jun 28 - 2AM (Reply to #25)
Susan32's picture

Sad, pathetic, and so true...

I saw my ex-P put on weight, get crows' feet, and get a double chin over a mere 4 year period. When I met him, he was 32, slim, tanned and handsome, with a dimpled chin and plenty of charm. Yet by the time he was 36, he had belly paunch, and was gradually losing his looks. Ironically, he still had the WORST teeth I've seen on anyone during the whole duration. How could someone with his income NOT go to the dentist? "Why is the narcissist afraid of death?"-My ex-P was cold about his aunt's cancer, my grandfather's death, and my friend's death. He was cruel to me when I was sympathetic about his aunt's breast cancer. He was cruel about my grandfather's death, telling me to "toughen up" DURING CLASS. It shocked him when my classmates came to my defense and told him to stop it... they were genuinely shocked. We had been spoiled. We had had HUMAN teachers. My ex-P said he couldn't believe in the Resurrection of the Body--and who WOULDN'T want to believe in that, that the bodies of the righteous are raised to perfection, youth, beauty on the Last Day? My ex-P, he will grow old, but never grow up. And if I ever see him again in person (the chance is incredibly remote, I haven't been to my alma mater in a decade),hopefully I won't recognize him,or I'll pretend not to. "Who are you? Do I remember you from somewhere?"
Jun 28 - 3AM (Reply to #24)
NancyM's picture


Thanks for the article, it pretty much sums up what I have seen. They do seem to become Dorian Gray.


Jun 27 - 9AM
Susan32's picture

Mine was losing his looks

When I first met my ex-P, he was tanned and trim. He was 33, and he could get away with having his shirt open to his navel. By the time of the D&D (he was 36 or 37 at the time), he had gotten paunchy, the lines beside his eyes were deeper... and his teeth had always been lousy. He was beginning to get a double chin. Not an attractive sight...
Jun 27 - 8AM
helldweller's picture

When they get old

Mine is 53, and I've only known him four years, but he does seem to be losing it. He's lost about forty pounds since I met him, is chain smoking and slamming straight vodka, and we've gotten into several actual fist fights. When I met him he was fabulous, gorgeous. He is a politician from an entitled, wealthy family. I used to think he was off banging young girls, but I now believe there are just a couple of middle aged women who are his old friends from school, and that he "plays up" his secret times with them to make himself look more desirable to me. I think when he was younger he likely had the whole thing going on with lots of girls, etc, but when I am in a social setting with him, it's obvious that he does not seem to be attractive to other women and that he has zero social skills. We went to a party at his own friend's house at the very end, and he didn't know anyone but the host so he just spoke to me all evening. Even I met a bunch of people, but he was paralyzed. I suppose if a woman came up to him and started it, he could do his act, but he seems really scared now, really violent, really alone. About the looks: it's strange, but he seems to me as he ages and gets thinner every day and more lined every day, and more agitated and scared: he looks more and more like a child. I just see a little boy when I look at him in his tshirt and gym shoes, with his thin little arms and less and less hair. When I met him, he was a sturdy, fun-loving, boisterous, gorgeous man. I think most of this has happened since he got his foster child two years ago and started pushing me away. I wonder a lot whether he feels he has painted himself into a corner, whether he realizes he's not going to be able to do marriage or his own children or anything he wanted. He has always been too proud to tell the truth about anything. I've asked him a thousand times if he's happy and he refuses to answer. I don't know if it's because he is or because he isn't. I think mine may have cancer. He told me he did, then told me he didn't, then told me he did, then told me he didn't. I wouldn't be a bit surprised if he is, in fact, dying but is too arrogant to believe that he will. It's such insanity. I think we could make that old saying about them: "Old Narcissists never die. They just keep saying they're alive."
Jun 27 - 11AM (Reply to #21)
loveofmylife's picture

Lots of similarities here

Is feeling more and more "scared" in a crowd of people. Nervous and clings on to me in crowds of strangers and stays stuck to me all night. Losing the confidence with strangers and needs me for support. Is losing some of his muscle volume compared to his youth....all normal...but I think he is working out too much to keep it. Is afraid to tell me the truth of what is wrong with him. I had to beat it out of him why he was going to the doctor last week. When I found out rotator cuff problem, then had to beat it out of him to tell me how it happened. It is wierd. It is like he doesn't want to share any issues; like he is immortal...and can't internalize that things are breaking. He knows I will probably be having breast surgery soon, but was embarassed to tell me he needs shoulder surgery. We've talked about just about everything there is in life to talk about, so it is wierd that he holds some things back, especially those that relate to his own immortality. And like you, I think mine feels that he has painted himself in a corner. I'm sure after dating 1,000 women, he has picked out the qualities he most likes and has a mental picture of the ideal woman that no woman could ever match.... and I'm sure he hates the thought of comprising to have his "perfect love"!
Jun 26 - 7AM
aceonelady's picture

when they get old....

Mine ex Narc is a 42 year old Afro American,his hair and goatee are white...so now he is shaving his head....Sometimes he is a 6 year old and sometimes he looks and sounds as a 80 years old....i am 54 ,look good enough,and he speaks to me as if i was his daughter....He always wanted me calling him Daddy....He is really a grumpy old man with no sense of humor letely....since he dumped me (i left him) he gained a lot of weight,after telling me i was on the heavy side for him....He is very irritated and loses his temper and lost already some supply ,because he said to me he don't care if people donot like the way he is,and that he don't need anybody,incluiding his children (14,16,18)and he will live or die anyway,life ain't so great....When i broke NC i REALLY did notice he is getting worst,angry,bitter,raging....Maybe his madness is really increasing....is scary....I am sure he is not able to keep his mask anymore to other supply as he did with me...He will end alone or dead or jail...


Jun 26 - 5AM
Scoop's picture

I had lunch with my mum this

I had lunch with my mum this week and we where discussing narcs and psycopaths , she told me that she believed her dad was a narc with possible bi polar . He was 82 when he died , he died screaming abuse at his second wife my step nana .. once a narc always a narc . It is so sad that these men die never knowing love , how narcs can never feel love , what a terrible ,shallow ,fear ridden exsistance .
Jun 25 - 7PM
Heart's picture


I will share with you. Married XNH when he was 53, I was 47. He was NEVER married before and I was. We dated for SIX years before he would get married. Things were great for two months, and downhill after that. We separated two years ago, after 9 years of marriage; his idea. He knew he was not suited for marriage, that he wanted to date other women and that I was a great wife, but he did not feel "romantic" feelings for me. He has always liked young eye candy. He told me that when he first met me he thought I was TOO young To go out with him. Our divorce will be final in a few weeks. He still trys to keep in contact with me, says he will always care about me as a friend. I know when we first split, there were several women in his life. He still sees himself as ladies man, cause he is attractive, AND very wealthy. I, on the other hand, am in the worst emotional shape of my life. Any questions? Let me know!
Jun 25 - 11PM (Reply to #16)
loveofmylife's picture


so you were married before? Would you classify your first husband as an N? If not, what were the differences?
Jun 26 - 8PM (Reply to #17)
Heart's picture

I think he had N tendencies;

I think he had N tendencies; he was very abusive; N #2 was a classic N!!!
Jun 25 - 6PM
Monica's picture

I think they become more frantic about losing supply...

My xN/P is in his 40's. But it appears that he is getting more "frantic" and desperate about losing his supply as he ages and his looks start to go (not that he was that great looking to begin with). I am older and look years younger than he does and am in a lot better health. He is panicking right now. He is facing abandonment and shame and is desperately trying to recycle old supply. (ME! And I think others that I suspect.) They return to the most compassionate ones in their past to help them build up their ego again and give them some kind of affirmation, no matter how small. It is a very upsetting thing to watch.
Jun 25 - 6PM
NancyM's picture


This is only from my observations but as they age, what goes around sort of comes around again. Age seems to terrify Narcs because they lose their advantage of faking it. I have read that a N peaks at middle age, where they are at their most cunning, (having refined their techniques) and can be at their most violent etc. Obviously a lot of them will go for the much younger female to maintain their image of being young and virile. I notice the age gap is commonly 15 years. Past this point however the mask seems to slip more and more, and not being able to woo all around them, they do seem to get worse, but also get more obvious, by trying less hard to hide their true nature. Often because of this people move away from them and they are usually left more and more alone, which is their own worst nightmare. From what I have seen they generally become nasty old men that nobody wants to know. Another thing, just in what I have observed, they will often say they don't believe in god etc(they are god in their own minds), but they have a great fear of dying because their is a chance that they might have to meet their maker. Don't know how widespread that is but it is true for the ones that I have known.


Jun 25 - 11PM (Reply to #12)
loveofmylife's picture


Same here. After 20 years of "going along" with me being a christian...I assumed he at least believed in God -since he "played" along with it, he, in one of his semi-rages, told me he was atheist and was very adamant about it. We had probably 10 hours of debate talking about it.... and he was steadfast. Then, he also did express fear that if there really was a god, he would surely burn in hell. Same exact thing my dad said who was a strong N and actually did believe in God
Jun 25 - 11PM (Reply to #13)
NancyM's picture

Mine too

Yup, it was my Dad, raging N that was an atheist, but was secretly terrified he was wrong.


Jun 25 - 4PM
stillsinging's picture

mine's 48 and grey but he

mine's 48 and grey but he thinks he's blonde, always boasting about how his hair is natural ... sure is. got a pot belly, red face, whiskery eye brows, every ailment under the sun but still thinks he's hot and sad to say, so did i such is his charisma
Jun 25 - 11AM
Allie's picture

It will be hell for alot of them...

because I was only having an email relationship for the last 8 months with my XN (narcissist high school sweetheart), I was able to really analyze his words without all the intensity of being with him, I had an unfair advantage (lol). He was not aware of how transparent he was to me (thanks in BIG part to this board-Thank you Lisa), since he still saw me as that naive teenager from 25 years ago. He told me things he REALLY shouldn't have as he was trying to "bond" with me, his extramarital affairs, his contempt of most people he knew (road rage was also a biggie), he told me intimate things about his wife, and I just listened. He told me a few times how he dreaded getting "old and wrinkly", it was always the physical aspect of aging he worried about, about how he feared he wouldn't be desirable anymore. He is somatic, and it's all about the conquests. I believe aging for an N will be sheer hell, but much more for somatic N's since they tend to be more focused on beauty, and using their bodies and sexuality then their minds. This N expressed the same feelings about women aging, so it would also be hell to grow old with them, imo :)
Jun 25 - 3PM (Reply to #9)
sarahb's picture

isn't it interesting!

Wow, I had the same experience, I was able to totally see the character of an XN through emails. the one I talked with wasn't quite as forthcoming as yours with his ugly side but the truth about his character still shone through...in a few short emails, he transformed from my memory of him being this tragic long lost love to him seeming like an alien who was trying to impersonate a human and not doing a very convincing job of it! Maybe he wasn't even bringing his A game to the interaction, but it was so obvious something was off about this person - which is what led me here, trying to figure out what was wrong with him. DING! Narcissistic Personality Disorder! that's it! Along with his diagnosis, i figured out half the men I ever dated, too!
Jun 25 - 11AM
Janet's picture

It is a mental disorder and

It is a mental disorder and pretty much none of them are trying to get help (and it is incurable 99% of the time anyway). My N/P is an alcoholic/addict as well and that too is a degenerative condition. Perhaps some get better at masking it, some might be able to stay longer in a relationship, but they are sick for life and probably getting worse with each day. Peace. J

Peace. J

Jun 25 - 10AM
smileyfacepr's picture

I ask myself

all the time..my exN is 15 yrs older than me..im 44 he is almost 58 and nothing, he still walked out..w/a bad back and brittle bones..but good looks to me anyways (my friends say no) lol..in my eyes hes the hottest man ever..lol..I wonder if he went back to ex that cheated w/his best friend? If he has new supply? But I wonder all the time..what will happen? what is happening..he has no money, lives w/his daughter, doesnt work as far as I know, he was trying to get disabilty 1 yr ago...so if u find an answer pls let me no..I also wonder y doesnt he just call..Im stuck!!


Jun 25 - 8AM
baddream's picture

Getting Older

I met mine when he was 48 and still fairly dynamic and successful. He is 56 now and I haven't seen him in a year, but the last time I saw him he was much changed. On one hand, N becomes conditioned by his "suppliers" and his N behaviors become worse, as he has lied, manipulated and abused for years and gotten away with it. In my case, the d&d's became more frequent, as did the punishment by silent treatment. Then something happens. They hit a wall, of a sort. In the case of my ex-N, as time went on the mask came off where his friends were concerned. It became apparent that N was living in his own dreamland, and everything he told everyone he was doing was only in his own fantasies. In addition, his family and friends have become tired of his N behaviors and see right through him. He does not talk to anyone anymore and has only a couple of friends, his current GF included, who will do anything, and bend over backwards, no matter how poorly he treats her. I believe at this stage in his life, N is depressed, lonely and short of supply. I think he is falling apart and living in his past dreams of glory. When his current GF wakes up, he may indeed find himself completely alone.
Jun 25 - 3AM
ACgirl's picture

Maybe age makes them worse

My N is 54. When I met him when he was 47. It seemed to me he was getting worse. I think the more he lied and got away with it, the more he felt impowered. It is scary to think this, but to me it seemed he got worse, or.... that is how the cycle looked from my end as he went through his typical "narc" cycle. He needs to hit a brick wall in order to snap out of it in some small way.
Jun 25 - 5AM (Reply to #2)
tamyb (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

The man I was involved with

The man I was involved with is 63 now. I met him when he was 47 and the first thing he lied about was his age. That should have been a red flag for me, but I just didn't see it at the time. He is just as bad now as he was when I first met him 15 years ago. He recently got remarried to a sweet woman that lost her first husband to cancer. He left her with a huge amount of money. I feel so sorry for her because I know how vulnerable she was and still is. She was a perfect target for him. Money, power, and playtime was always his motivation. That hasn't changed with age. He still has the same sense of entitlement, he still continues to lie and cheat. From what I've heard, he is having some health problems now. Karma?
Jun 27 - 11AM (Reply to #3)
James (not verified)
Anonymous's picture


Thanks all for sharing! This question is one that I have asked myself for many years. Most on what I read about the disorder and aging points in the direction that they do get worst as they age. Growing old for anyone is never easy nor simply. My current job is working with the elderly which can be a great job but carry with it a sadness because of the aging and many burdens placed on them because of it. We all will see lost both on a business and personal level. Most of us will come to understand and accept that age takes some things but also through emotional psychological and spiritual growth we learn and grow to become more defined and stronger both in our place in society and our personal life. We gain wisdom knowledge compassion and an understand of love and connection with others like no others time in our youth. Sorry for those that don’t learn and never connect with others sadly all these experiences never develop and grow. Supply for all of us to some degree will lessen but again for those that reached a point of understanding and accept our own morality we use whatever time we have left to gain more of a connection with others such as our spouse children and friends. In short we all have much to look forward too... Sorry but this doesn’t happen for them. If I was like them, I too would fear death and fear that which will happen when I too must allow for this door to open unto me.... Again thanks for sharing and your personal stories give others and I much insight! James. http://james-personalitydisorder.blogspot.com/
May 25 - 9PM (Reply to #4)
Better Now
Better Now's picture

OLD Narcissit