If you recognize any of those behaviours in a partner or friend who you have had a relationship with, then congratulations- you were in a toxic relationship with a narcissist or a sociopath.
Now, if you were like me, then you probably felt at war with your own mind, constantly wondering if the fault was with you, or them. After doing some research, as I’m sure many of you have done in this situation, I discovered that all the things I thought were “broken” in me, were actually just fine. I wasn’t the one who was so destroyed that I couldn’t find a way to keep myself together unless I was destroying another person…that was them.
Well, from my experience, this happens for 2 reasons.
Narcissists believe they are faultless. They can do no wrong. Regardless of how many times you point out their behaviour and how it affects you, they will find a way to turn it around on you as being your fault. It’s a classic manipulation tactic that these two toxic personality types have mastered. Plus, everything is a competition with them, so if you bring up the psychological science behind gaslighting, or mention the similarities to their behaviour and a narcissistic or sociopathic profile, they will do the exact same thing to you. Furthermore, they will use psychology as their arsenal. Eventually, the line becomes a blur. “Am I really the one to blame?” becomes a lingering thought in the back of your mind. And let’s face it- we all have our flaws. But I think it’s safe to say that if you’re worrying over possibly being a narcissist or a sociopath then you probably aren’t one.
Projection is basically a mirror; it’s a reflection of what someone is carrying inside themselves. Narcissists and sociopaths are constantly projecting their issues and insecurities on others. So it stands to reason that they would include their psychosis as well. In one instance, I had a friend who was so deeply disillusioned that they became the spokesperson for gaslighting. They told all of our mutual friends how I was the one who was manipulative, dishonest, and lacked empathy, but failed to see how they were describing their own behaviours. It really is mind-boggling when someone does that to you. And you can’t argue or fight against it; you will never be able to change someone’s willful perception of you. You just have to let go and move on.
I’m curious to know how many of you have confronted these types of personalities, pointed out their genuine ties to narcissistic or sociopathic behaviours, and had them turn it right around on you.