Why is narcissistic behaviour so up and down?
How can a narcissist appear to be so considerate and caring one moment, and incredibly childish, abusive and unreasonable the next?
Is this the same person? Why does a narcissist spin on a dime?
In today’s Thriver TV episode I explain to you the many faces of a narcissist and what it really means.
If you have felt bamboozled and distraught as a result of the dire mood and behaviour swings of the narcissist, then this episode is a must watch one for you.
Narcissists can be so incredibly confusing.
People have called them Jekyll and Hydes.
People have referred to them as Street Angel/Home Devils.
It is likely that you have experienced times where the narcissist is a pure delight, and then without warning switch and be your most terrible nightmare.
There is even more complexity to the many faces of the narcissist, which I am going to be talking to you about in today’s TTV episode.
However, before I do, I’d like to thank you for subscribing to my channel and supporting the Thriver mission. Please know how deeply grateful I am for your belief in my work.
If you haven’t yet subscribed, I’d love to invite you to please do so, and also remember to give this episode a thumbs up if it resonates with you.
Grandiosity Versus Insecurity
Narcissists appear to be powerful, confident and capable.
Yet, it’s very important to understand that people who are solid and healthy on the inside and do believe in their own self and capacity, don’t need to grandstand or publicise themselves.
Narcissists self-promote, a lot. A narcissist commonly will interject into conversations with what he or she has or hasn’t done, and thinks or believes, as if he or she is the authority on all topics.
If a narcissist can’t assert their authority, or bring the attention back to themselves, he or she will usually change the subject, exit the scene or create some form of diversion or drama.
People with healthy self-esteem who don’t suffer the dire insecurities that narcissists do, are comfortable to allow others to shine or know more than themselves, and can ask questions and be genuinely interested.
Narcissists, however, need to have centre stage complete with people seemingly being mesmerised by the narcissist’s accomplishments, brilliance and talents.
He or she will be deflated, sullen and moody if this is not the case, or even downright nasty, such as discrediting anybody who stole the attention that he or she so desperately needs in order to try to feel “normal”.
Care and Consideration Versus Cruelty and Condemnation
A narcissist can be so “lovely”. He or she can appear to be helpful, generous and totally concerned for your well-being.
But there is a more sordid truth to this.
This behaviour is not consistent. In fact, you will start to understand that this person can suddenly become accusatory, paranoid, childishly nasty, and even maliciously cruel.
What is so disturbing is that this ugly shift can emerge very quickly, and without any real provocation.
This is for a variety of reasons. The narcissist is often “giving” for an agenda to get something. Then, when the narcissist doesn’t get the payoff because of the conditional acts of “care” that were extended to you, the narcissist is likely to unravel into a narcissistic rage.
Or, the narcissist is suffering another bout of his or her inner demons arising and starts blaming you for this self-annihilating emotional state.
Because the narcissist is so disconnected from consciousness, which requires taking personal responsibility for his or her emotional traumas, naturally this will always be somebody else’s fault.
If you are being abused by a narcissist, then you are one of, if not the narcissist’s favourite target.
Sincerity Versus Pathological Lying
Narcissists have an uncanny ability to look you straight in the eyes and appear to be 100% empathetic and sincere. He or she additionally can mirror back to you the body language and postures that make you feel deeply understood.
Yet, you are stunned to discover that the words held no weight whatsoever.
The horrific truth is that the narcissist can say anything and everything that is required in the moment to fulfil an agenda.
This can happen when love bombing you at the start of a relationship in order to secure you as narcissistic supply, or grooming you after you are hooked as supply so that you hand over your energy, sexuality, money or resources. Or, it is used when hoovering you back into the relationship when you are threatening to leave.
So many have discovered that despite the claims of monogamy, loyalty and undying love that he or she can turn and commit obscene betrayals that make your head spin.
Literally tearing your life to pieces.
It’s so important to understand that words mean nothing. It’s the actions and real-life applications that define an individual, regardless of how apparently sincere they are.
I really want you to understand this, and even make note of it.
If you’re ready to take your power back on this point, I want you to pause this video and write below, “I understand that it’s a person’s actions and not their words that define their character!”
Altruism Versus Seeking Supply
There are many narcissists who are community minded, granting apparent service, time and altruism to others.
This can be extremely confusing when ascertaining somebody’s character and thinking, “He or she is so spiritual/kind to animals/caring for the elderly/community minded/donating time and effort so tirelessly to others …” And the list goes on and on.
This is often the narcissist who is the “Street Angel/Home devil”.
The public persona of this person is amazing and he/she represents themselves as a pillar of society. Yet, when this person is at home, they rip to shreds their nearest and dearest when no one else is around to see it.
And what is so devastating for the people connected to the altruistic narcissist, is that he or she will do very little to contribute or care for them. There is minimal supply to be gained from close intimates who are not going to bow and scrape and tell the narcissist how wonderful they are every minute of every day.
This person appears to be such a lovely person to those who do not have to share a full-time life with them, because there is a great deal of narcissistic supply (attention and acclaim) to receive as a result of going over and above the call of duty with non-intimates.
Yet, often the cracks appear. When others don’t appease the narcissist’s fragile ego with enough recognition, or do something that the narcissist deems as not adequate to appease their ego, then the narcissist is just as likely to smear this person, discredit them or wipe them completely out of their life without notice.
This is the reason why so many narcissists have transient relationships that just don’t last, and frequently new people can be idolised and become the next best friend, colleague or associate.
Brokenness Versus Impenetrable Defences
There may be times when you have met the inner broken child of a narcissist. This is when he or she appears vulnerable and even remorseful and self-aware of his or her inner demons.
Your heart goes out to this person and you may feel protective, and that you really do love him or her and will do anything to help them survive themselves, heal and evolve into somebody functional, decent and happy.
Yet, it can be extremely difficult to gauge whether these bouts are real or not. Moody narcissists are incredibly capable of feigning such episodes to pull you back in through your heartstrings, to get you to lower your boundaries and rights again.
If this is genuine, it’s likely to be when the narcissist has suffered a massive narcissistic injury and the ego is unable to uphold itself, momentarily exposing the terrified, broken child inside that the narcissist really is.
The big problem is, as soon as the narcissist gets enough narcissistic supply from outside of him or herself to prop the ego back up again, then the formidable, impenetrable defences are back in business.
A narcissist will “bite their nose off despite their face”. A narcissist would rather be right than happy. A narcissist would rather maintain their False Self, which means taking zero personal responsibility and being completely absorbed with their own veneer, than anything or anybody else in their life.
Of course, this is disastrous for relationships and for any true trust, communion or connections to be possible.
How Can You Escape the Madness?
Okay, so I hope that this episode has helped to explain to you some of the many complex dichotomies of a narcissist.
These different narcissistic faces are black-and-white. The narcissist is an “all or nothing” character who swings from one extreme to the other.
And these opposing behaviours are virtually consistent with all narcissists, regardless of who the narcissist is in your life.
Identically, your relief and true recovery process from narcissistic and toxic people, is the same, regardless of who the narcissist is in your life.
I would love to connect you with my powerful recovery resources which will ensure that you get the right information, clarity and true healing solutions that you need. You can access these by clicking this link.
If the video resonated with you, I would love for you to leave a comment below. And as always, I love answering any questions that you write into me.