Last Updated on August 15, 2022 by Alexander Burgemeester
“Narcissistic rage” is a term coined by Heinz Kohut in his book The Analysis of the Self when it was published in 1972. It occurs when the narcissist perceives he is being personally “attacked” by someone else.
Grandiose self-worth, vanity, and entitlement are basic characteristics of this disorder; when these are challenged it often leads to narcissistic rage.
Narcissistic rage is a reaction to” narcissistic injury”- a perceived threat to their self-worth or self-esteem.
Their rages can be of two types: explosive or passive-aggressive. The explosive rages are just as they sound- explosive, volatile outbursts which may be verbal, physical or both.
The passive-aggressive rages are exhibited as a withdrawal into a sulky, silent treatment as the means to punish the offender.
What is Narcissistic Rage? a Real-life Example
“He has this very childish ability to get really worked up about something… when he’s very frustrated, his way to achieve catharsis is to hurt somebody.
And I think he feels he has a liberty and a license to do that. The normal rules of social engagement, he feels, don’t apply to him.”
Does that sound like anyone you know?
That’s actually a famous quote from Jonny Ive, Chief Designer at Apple. He’s talking about the company’s co-founder and former CEO, Steve Jobs.
Like many high-powered, successful businesspeople, Jobs was known for his aggressive and abusive outbursts. For one minute, he could be calm, collected, and focused.
But if he heard something he didn’t like, he could fly off in a seemingly uncontrolled rage, throwing nasty and hurtful insults at whoever had upset him.
So was Jobs some hyped-up alpha male? Someone who would be equally at home in the military, or as captain of a sports team, as he was in the boardroom?
Actually, no. Jobs was notoriously thin-skinned. “That’s one of the things that makes his antisocial behaviour, his rudeness, so unconscionable,” Ive said, in Walter Isaacson’s biography of Jobs.
“I can understand why people who are thick-skinned and unfeeling can be rude, but not sensitive people.”
Although Jobs was never diagnosed with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), his reported behavior does fit much of the criteria for NPD.
It’s very common for narcissists to be thin-skinned, and to experience bouts of intense anger – which we call narcissistic rage. And the two traits are related.
This is the piece of the puzzle that Ive was missing – the thin skin leads to the narcissistic rage.
That’s what we’ll explore in this article – what narcissistic rage is, where it comes from, and, importantly, how to deal with it.
Reading Suggestion: How To Annoy a Passive Aggressive Person?
The Difference Between Anger and Narcissistic Rage
Everyone gets angry. If you get cut off while driving if someone is rude to you, if your neighbors are playing techno music at 3 AM, it’s perfectly normal for a little anger to swell up.
Scholars believe that anger evolved to help us survive. When other people make an affront against us, a little anger shows them we mean business.
They may think twice about messing with us in the future if they see we’re prepared to fight back.
In healthy people, the amount of anger you experience is proportional to whatever triggered it in the first place. If someone cuts you off, you might get a little frustrated. If a conman scams you out of a lot of money, you’ll likely be very angry.
In people with NPD, it’s almost like this anger circuitry is wired differently.
Narcissists have a huge, unrealistic sense of their own self-worth. They believe that they are special and superior to other people. However, that belief is a very fragile lie.
The truth is, narcissists actually have very low self-esteem. Deep down, they hold grave fears that they are not as special as they like to think they are.
Confronting your own self-worth can be painful, especially for people who are deeply insecure – and even more so for people whose positive self-image is built on a fragile foundation.
So when narcissists receive even a slight criticism, or even if they don’t get the amount of adoration they need, they react as if their entire self-image and value as a human beings have been threatened.
We call this a narcissistic injury.
This triggers not just frustration, not just anger, but something more – a narcissistic rage. Unfortunately, narcissistic rage can be triggered very easily.
What Triggers a Narcissistic Rage?
As described above, narcissistic rage is a protective mechanism against a narcissistic injury.
Narcissists feel that they are being attacked, and the rage is an attempt to defend themselves.
But, their high opinion of themselves, and their high expectations for the people around them, make them hypersensitive.
They can be triggered by things that seem completely neutral – or even positive. Here are just a few examples:
1. They don’t get their way – even if what they want is unreasonable or impossible
People with narcissism often place unrealistic demands on their partners or children. These demands are frequently challenged by the person in the relationship.
When challenged, the narcissists’ brittle egos are unable to accept the idea that they were wrong or seen as imperfect.
They turn this into a personal attack and respond with rage toward that person to regain their sense of superiority.
2. They are not getting as much attention as they need.
Even if there is some crisis going on that legitimately and reasonably pulls people’s attention elsewhere
3. They do not receive the special treatment that they believe they deserve
The Narcissist deserves all the attention there is to be given. If they tell you a story that is much more interesting than your story you better be listening and give them an appraisal.
4. They feel like they are losing control of the situation, or of other people
When a narcissist’s shortcomings are pointed out by someone, they feel an overwhelming sense of shame. The narcissist then lashes out toward the person who pointed out the shortcomings.
The rage is executed to seek revenge upon the accuser. The need for revenge results in explosive rage and does not die down until the narcissist feels the person was dealt with appropriate punishment.
5. They are criticized in any way – even if the criticism is accurate and delivered in a very gentle, constructive way
The narcissist has a false sense of self. Underlying this false sense of self are feelings that he is not loveable for who he is or what he offers in relationships.
When a lover or partner begins to doubt the narcissist, that is when the narcissistic rage surfaces.
So once a narcissistic injury has occurred, what does a narcissistic rage look like? What form can it take?
What Are the Symptoms of Narcissistic Rage?
As the word “rage” suggests, the response to a narcissistic injury tends to be disproportionate, and lacking in control.
This is not to say that narcissists’ anger cannot be expressed in a cool, measured and calculated way – it can, especially by malignant narcissists.
However, the in-the-moment reaction tends to be reactive and uncontrolled.
Anger and hostility are the most common symptoms, which may lead to verbal, physical, or sexual abuse as the narcissist retaliates against the perceived attack against them.
But usually, these are not the only unpleasant emotions the narcissist feels.
At the root of a narcissistic injury is a shame – the feeling, or fear, of being exposed for who they really are, of not being as special as they believe themselves to be.
Even in healthy people, the feeling of shame can trigger anger, and this is massively amplified in people with NPD.
Types of Narcissistic rage
Typically, the narcissistic rage will involve a direct attack at the person the narcissist perceives to be threatening them, but this is not always the case.
A 2019 study by researchers at Edinburgh Napier University found that narcissists can respond to narcissistic injury in two different ways – with explosive rage, or passive-aggressive rage.
Explosive Narcissistic Rage
This is the classic form of narcissistic rage, sometimes called “overt anger.”
It can involve insults, abuse, screaming, and threats. As we will discuss shortly, it can also lead to physical violence; in some cases, narcissists may inflict physical harm upon themselves.
Narcissists can also respond in more “covert” ways. For example, they might sulk or refuse to speak to the offended person.
Note that the two forms are not necessarily exclusive – a narcissist may initially respond with explosive rage, and then switch to the passive-aggressive range when they have calmed down somewhat.
Are narcissists violent?
It’s important to make clear that not all narcissists are violent, just as not all instances of violence are related to narcissism. However, there is certainly a clear link.
In 2019, psychologists at the University of Bath analyzed 25 studies looking into narcissism and violence, and their work showed a consistent relationship.
In fact, the studies showed that narcissists were somewhere between 20% and 11 times more likely to exhibit violent behavior than non-narcissists.
The studies also confirmed that violence was significantly more likely to occur after an ego threat – a narcissistic injury.
Narcissistic Rage Cycle: The 7 Stages of Anger
Rage is a primitive, immature child-like expression of thwarted needs and/or (actual or perceived) invalidation.
For most people, anger goes through several levels of emotion, each level requiring a certain level of self-control. According to psychiatrist Adam Blatner, there are seven levels of anger:
- Stress Feeling angry subconsciously but not demonstrating it.
- Anxiety Anger shown through subtle clues.
- Agitation Displeasure is shown without blame.
- Irritation A little more displeasure to elicit a response.
- Frustration Anger with a scowl or harsh words.
- Anger Anger with loudness of speech and expression.
- Rage Losing temper and getting into a rage; aggression.
What Goes Wrong?
It appears that narcissists do not go through the 7 stages like other people do. The smallest infraction will send them right to level 7-rage. Why is that?
Their rage seems to be caused by any threat to their ego, and the ensuing rage acts to erase that threat and maintain their self-image and feelings of superiority.
To narcissists, rage is a perfectly appropriate response when they experience any threat to their view of self.
The Do’s and Don’t of Dealing with Narcissistic Rage
If you are in a relationship or have any other dealings with a narcissist.
It’s really important to understand what triggers the narcissistic injury, so that you’re better able to manage the person’s self-esteem and keep yourself safe.
However, as noted earlier, even minor criticisms can be perceived by a narcissist as a major attack. You are effectively walking on eggshells here.
A completely innocent comment, a particular tone of voice, or even something you don’t say or do, can trigger a narcissistic injury and narcissistic rage.
So the first thing to realize, is that you are not to blame for these outbursts, nor are you responsible for them.
Although the narcissist may attempt to paint you as the villain, and place the blame on you, understand that this is not true.
They may believe that themselves, and they may seem convincing, but narcissists do not see the world in a rational, balanced way, especially when angered.
With that said, it’s also important to know what to do when a narcissist is mad at you.
- Healing After Narcissistic Abuse
- 14 Ways Narcissists Brainwash their Victims
- The “Silent Treatment” is a form of Abuse
How to respond to narcissistic rage?
Every narcissist is a unique individual, but there are some general dos and don’ts which can be helpful to know:
- Respond with your own anger or rage. Remember that narcissistic rage is triggered by a narcissistic injury. If you raise your voice, or become aggressive yourself, this could be perceived as a further threat to their self-worth.
- Engage in a logical debate. Don’t try to prove why they are overreacting, and why you didn’t do anything wrong. In the state of rage, the narcissist’s cognitive judgement is impaired. They can’t think straight, and will happily lie to prove themselves right. They are not holding a debate – they are lashing out. If you did convince them that you were right and they were wrong, you would be positioning yourself as someone with power over their self-esteem – and this is something that they won’t accept.
- Blame yourself. You cannot make someone act abusive towards you – that is something they can only do themselves.
- Placate. Although direct confrontation of the narcissist’s points is not productive, placating and accepting their point of view is also not an effective response. It often simply reinforces the abuse, as the narcissist realises that they can elicit submissive, appeasing behaviour from you by acting in this abusive way.
- Plead or apologise for your behaviour. Narcissists often show contempt for behaviours that they consider to be weak. Furthermore, apologising simply reinforces that they are right and you are wrong.
- Put your safety first. No matter what a narcissist may say to you, you do not deserve to experience verbal, physical, or sexual abuse. If you believe you are in danger, contact the police or a domestic abuse helpline.
- Recognize the type of rage you are dealing with. If this is explosive rage, your best approach may be to leave their presence. If it is passive-aggressive rage, which often manifests itself as “silent treatment”, it is often best to simply ignore it and go about your business.
- Stay calm. Speak and act calmly, without raising your voice or becoming aggressive. They may try to get a rise out of you, and goad you into an argument – avoid this. I know it’s easier said than done when you have a raging narcissist bearing down on you, but try not to take the bait.
- Validate their feelings. Narcissistic rage is driven by emotion, not logic, this is why debating doesn’t work. Instead, you can simply say, “I’m sorry you feel that way, but you are entitled to your feelings.” This validation can boost their self-esteem a little (which might reduce their anger) without you having to accept what they are saying.
- Set boundaries. Mark Gouldston, Professor of Medicine at UCLA’s Neuropsychiatric Institute, recommends waiting until the next day, and stating that if they speak to you in that way again, you will ask them once to stop. You will simply walk away to another part of the house if they don’t stop. However, if you have made this statement, it is important to follow through.
- Practice self-care. Stress-reduction techniques like mindfulness meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, or slow breathing exercises can help you stay calmer under pressure. They can also help calm your nervous system after you’ve been the victim of narcissistic rage.
- Seek support. If you feel overwhelmed, you might find speaking to a psychotherapist or joining a support group beneficial. If you have a close friend or family member you can confide in, don’t hesitate to contact them. Narcissists, especially during a narcissistic rage, will often try to “gaslight,” which means to convince you of a particular point of view (usually where you are the one in the wrong). An outside perspective can help defend against this.
Above all, if you do find yourself on the receiving end of narcissistic rage, consider the impact of this person on your life.
Do they really give you something that makes what they inflict on you worthwhile?
Do they treat you in ways that you actually want to be treated? If the answer to either question is “No”, consider that it may be time to end the relationship.
Are You Interested in The Following Topics?
46 thoughts on “What is Narcissistic Rage? How To Deal With an Angry Narcissist?”
I accepted a manager position for county government and I quit after 2 years because I was getting depressed and physically sick and couldn’t pinpoint why after enjoying years of good health. The management team i worked with consisted of a director, assistant director, prog manager and a budget manager who were all narcissist. I am a mental health prof who has worked in the field of mental health for 20+ years and not even having prior knowledge of this personality type helped me. I often wondered about this peculiar bunch that by all appearance seemed professional and appeared to get along so well.
I been reading alot on this i was trying to figure alot of stuff about my ex we bought a house together and all the stuff i have read it was him to a t…i had to put a protection order just to keep my kids and safe from everything…the people who are have this needs to get help it really screws with emotions…i was a reck but im just working on me ….to build my.self up to ware i was
Thank you for all the information, this article really relates to my mother, and the abuse my husband and I have received from her. It’s never ending, I pray for patience but most of the time it doesn’t work.
i cant get out of this every characteristic you point out is her.I am broke and i cant win.Please i need help to get away from this i believe she is the best . My children see this but they think it is normal.She has her friends convinced it is me. she is several steps ahead to cover her tracks .The rage is unbelievable i called the police one time made out a report do not know what she wrote it is on record also i called 911. she is a true narcissist according to every thing i read.How can i prove this if i go to court to save my sanity .
I hear you! I fear for my sanity also. If I can’t get to school now after 2 years of waiting and trying to go, I feel I will go down into despair. I don’t have a car I don’t have money I can’t get a ride, there are no buses in my city. If I work I will not make any money because my benefits would be cut. I am not allowed anything over 30$ a month on SSI. It is different than SSD! SSD gets almost 2times more a month AND they can work without being penalized! The system is designed to keep people on it and dependent and the people running it abuse their power. I cannot take any more of this! I need to get to school so I can earn enough to support myself and I can’t wait any more! I need a therapist who is trained in this! Most therapists DO NOT understand and make it worse! It seems their are nothing but evil abusers, Narcissits, and Unfeeling, uncaring, I don’t have time for you, type of people out there any more! And I am talking about people who are supposed to be helping me!
My Narc turned everyone against me too! Please know that there are others out here who care and who are not like that! I will include you in my prayers. I wish you well in dealing with your problems and hope things get better for you. God tells us in His word to turn to Him and to ask for His help and He promises to help those of His children who love Him and follow Him. I have found that when I tried to rely on myself and others for help it got me absolutely no where! When I turned to God and asked for His help, He did answer me. I did get help with some of my problems, but not everything yet. Have faith and trust in God to care for you and ask to be shown the path God wants you to follow. Being thankful and counting your blessings is what works! God has promised to hear the prayers of the righteous and to save the oppressed in times of trouble! Then, when He delivers you remember to Thank and Praise Him!!!
Amen to that! I’ve read and learned and cried wanting out but stuck in the cycle. 3 years and many hoovering, and getting sucked back in. I lost my mom in April, I finally turned to what I thought was my last hope. I had gone back for worse things and now I needed a way out. I begged and cried and prayed for help to end this mind torture. And I’m proud to say I’m 31 days NO CONTACT. I feel so good, I’m almost myself again! He still hoovering and now rage but I’m staying strong. Thank you God!
I know the pain, ya the system sucks, you are treated as a customer not somebody who wants to get ahead.The system wants to keep you poor cause they are trying to keep their job. Best thing you can do is be a inventing artist this way you can create a business that can repeat yearly service or need.I started my business with a leaf blower and grew into many talents.Don’t get caught up with one customer because they will own you ,have many customers so you can replace toxic customers. And don’t work for a company be your own person .When your in your business they can’t fire you you firer them. I fought very hard to keep controlling people out of my life.You can adjust your hour in business for yourself and if you work for a company on the side tell no one at work what you do cause the company will rob you of time and hours as to keep you codependency ❤️ Brain storm and be creative in your design so it can fly.
Documente everything! And I mean everything no matter how small! Get a journal and try not to react to the manipulations.
They will rage for what they precleve in their sick twisted minds as an attack even though there is none. Great resources are on u-tube. They will give you the knowledge and skills on how to deal with these very very mental ill people. Resources are Kim Wilson TV , Sam Vakin and Richard Grannon. There are others. Be selective. Most of all know this!! You are not crazy! What they are doing is very calculated cruel and intentional. Protect your privacy and if you have any social media ei… facebook,pinterest
or linkin change your security settings to private. They love to spy and stalk you. Be careful who you discuss and share your personal information with.They are notorisis at recruiting people to gather person information on you and then use it against you. Painful and difficult to hear and believe… yes I know but very real and true. Look up( the narcissist’s flying monkeys and abuse by proxy) you will better understand what going on. Don’t say anything in front of your children that you dont’ want their grandmother to know!!! Very important!!! Research and learn as much as you possible can about NPD!! GOD BLESS AND GOOD LUCK!!! YOU ARE STRONGER THEN YOU THINK!!!!❤
It makes it especially hard for us men, because of the societal gender stereotype and lack of support groups specifically for emotionally abused men. I am glad to see another speaking out about this type of abuse.
The fight me and my STBX got in where I finally left was a perfect example of this. HE had turned off the air conditioner but asked me if I did, I said in a semi whiny voice “I didn’t do it” he was already in a bad mood so he sarcastically said something about how if I used that defense in court I’d be a laughing stock. He said something about murder and saying “I didn’t do it” and I said “there’s a huge difference between turning off the air conditioner and murder”. Whoops. This enraged him. Did I really think he was SO stupid that didn’t know the difference between murder and an air conditioner? I was a condescending B—h. Stuff started getting thrown. I started getting called all kinds of names. And “after everything I put him through” I was supposed to just sit there and take it.
It devolved from there. I wound up leaving him that night.
Comments like HIS are no joke. Get away from him as that sounds like a perceived offense which he will need to get back at you for. In my experience, a narcissist is more than willing to go to the extent of setting you up to discredit you or unfairly get you in trouble with law. It is unbelievable what they will do to discredit and humiliate you and no one will believe you because they play you off against them well in advance. The person I have encountered is amazingly good at identifying a persons insecurity and using that insecurity to turn them against you. It has always amazed me the hatred I have encountered from people I have never… met until I worked this shit out. These people are very sneaky and scary. Do not offend one as they will not stop. Good luck.
My wife is such a manipulator she will use the law or even child protective services to manipulate and control things. when she disagrees with children discipline she will tell our children to tell their teachers at school. She posts comments about our disagreements on her Facebook page in order to get others to agree her. She then uses that agreement as justification for her behavior and further denigration of me. She constantly mocks, demeans and denigrates me in order to make herself feel better. She knows the law and the fact that if the police are called for domestic dispute in this state the male will have to leave the home regardless of who is at fault. As a result, during her rages she tries to bait me into doing something that she can use against me with the police.
There end justifies their means cause they don’t want to take responsibility for actions they are right when they are right and right when they are wrong. I hate narciss with a passion. Walk away good for you.
I am a divorced 56 year old man who, due to financial problems, lives with my Mother. It’s an average sized 2 story, 3 bedroom town house with a basement. It could be a mansion but still not big enough for my narcissistic mother and myself. She has all but 2 of the classic narcissistic traits from the latest edition DSM. Diagnostic and statictical manual which is used by all mental health pros. My problem is that I am running out of patience to the point where I truly wish one of us would die. I have made a couple half hearted suicide attempts but never ever put a hand on her. I cannot tolerate the put-downs, lack of respect/privacy, the “everything is my fault” attitude etc etc. The worst thing is that I have 2 biological daughters and my mother treats the 31 year old like a queen and ignores the 24 year old. I mean she has not seen or even made an attempt to see her. She never seemed to care about my younger daughter from the day she was born. Before my Dad passed away in 2008 we would all spend Xmas together lie a normal family. Now she will send my youngest a $50 check. In 2013 I must have heard my mother say to me “I didn’t get a thank you note from ______”. My daughter wrote one and I saw the envelope at my ex wife’s house (where she lives). Somehow the envelope never made it to my mother. I told her “_____sent it!!!!”, every time she whined and/or screamed about it. In 2014 I told my daughter to write the undeserving thank you note and I will hand deliver it. My ex and daughter were thinking of sending the check back with a note stating “thanks, but no thanks”. I told my daughter to take the money and spend it, go out and have a good time. “If you send the note back she wins” is what I told them and we agreed. The thing that baffles my mind is that my mother goes into a rage when I poliitely tell her how ignoring ______ hurts me. Give me 3 minutes and I gaurentee she will scream. But not when there is someone else there. She is good at hiding her rage in front of others. I don’t think she is too stupid to realize how that effects me. I believe she just does not give a $#$%!!! Anyone got any suggestions on how to endure this emotional abuse for about 3 more months, when I should be in better financial shape to get myself a home. And here’s another problem where I will listen to all suggestions! I fear she is going to leave her house (which my Dad busted his rear to pay for while mother just sat on her rear) to my older daughter and leave nothing to my younger daughter and myself. My older daughter already has a nicer house which mother helped her buy. Is there anything I can legally do to make sure ______ and myself get our share? Anyone, please help, ADVICE NEEDED!! Thank you.
I am dealing with a bad spot myself… Not with a parent, but a spouse. He is a fantastic manipulator and much to my personal horror has pushed me to limits where I myself was exhibiting unacceptable behaviors – I didn’t even know who I was anymore! Therapy helps if you can afford it. If not, start reading some books on boundaries as setting good boundaries will help you feel more in control of yourself and less reactive to the N in your life (which helps by removing fuel, tho there may be an initial backlash).
What about the relationship between your daughters? If they are good sisters to one another, perhaps the older could take the inheritance and then pass along her extra assets to the younger. I know this doesn’t fix the relationship between you and your mom or your younger child with her grandmother, but it is a sort of practical resolution at the least.
Best of luck and God bless!
Sounds like my a••hole father same way the golden child that is sad because the golden child doesn’t know what pain others suffer. Go no contact the hell with toxic behavior. Every day I say I am glad my father is dead.And read every day on narcissist people for your own mental health. Narciss are nothing but their puke on the ground is in them.And keep your children away from them because she will turn them against you nothing but poisoning the well 💕
You shouldn’t be expecting anyone to make life easier. Life is unfair, but we have to keep our hope in God, not people. If your mom wants to make her will to only one person and actually keep it for herself, then are you going to be angry at your oldest daughter for the gift she got? See how it all gets so ugly so fast? Just work, pay for your own way in life, walk gently in this world and get away from your mom. Just because she is your mom, you knew how she was and still moved in. Wouldn’t have renting a room somewhere been better than a house full of anger and bad memories being made? We have to choose walking in love, overlooking wrongs as best we can, especially if we have fallen and need someone to get us through.. and they are horrible to you for being there. Pray, trust God, get your heart right about your mom so ‘things may go well with you’.. that’s what the bible says! I’m going to pray for you, Mark.. I hope you get your life in order and don’t weigh out what you feel is your due. Life doesn’t go like we want it to. We grow and learn.
I am on SSI and live in a SIL(semi-independent living)apartment. I was married for 18 years and had 3 kids with him. He hooked me onto drugs and blamed me for everything and then when I was good and hooked he divorced me saying I was an unfit mother and I did not have an attorney and was actively using at the time of the divorce. I lost my children. I lost the house. We had a nice house and he worked at GM for 25 years and made good money. we had 2 newer cars and a boat and he had pension and GM stock, etc. I was awarded only my personal belongings and 1 room of furniture. He never gave me that either! My parents refused to help me so I wouldn’t lose everything and my mom took over my kids when I tried in the past to leave abusive husband. and made it so intolerable with her abuse I went back when he called. Anyway I lost everything and my whole life I didn’t have control over money. I had a cosmetology license but he refused to make payment for renewal thereby making sure I couldn’t ever leave or support myself and I have been the scapegoat of my family all my life and to his family and to my next husband’s family. My mother smear campaigned me to EVERYONE! My whole family, my church, brothers husbands and even my children. HOW CAN I GET OUT OF THIS SITUATION? I THOUGHT COLLEGE. I START TOMORROW BUT NO CAR NO RIDE! I can’t work or they will cut my benefits and I will end up with no more than I get now but I would be working 20 hrs. a week and stuck in minimum wage!
It all sounds like text book narciss, boy I hate narciss same thing happened to me. Fight start a new life go no contact. People believe what they want to believe walk away and don’t look back . And live a good life.❤️😊 I wish I could point just like the junk guy and tinkle tinkle they would disappear 😹 That would be nice.
Hey there I am so happy I found your weblog, I really found you by
error, while I was looking on Digg for something else,
Anyways I am here now and would just like to say kudos for a incredible post and a all round interesting blog (I
also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to go
through it all at the moment but I have bookmarked it and also added your RSS feeds, so when I have time I
will be back to read much more, Please do keep up the
I’m sorry, i know this is highly unethical to talk about.
I’ve worked in my family business for over 15 years. For many years, i had tried to pin point just why i was feeling so depressed. I used to love my job, my life and everyone around me. I’ve had been turned in to an absolute wreck, a monster, someone i hate. Why? well you’ve read the article and perhaps a 100 more.
An employee here had completely ruined my reputation. I was turned in to the office joke and a walking punching bag for this guy and his fellow ‘yes men’. When you’ve been working in a field for 15 years, you gain experience and a great reputation – to have a junior walk in your room who is under the master manipulation of a narc, and then questions your ability to perform when instead you should receive respect – you know somethings wrong.
Being a family business, you would expect your family to step in. Unfortunately, they too were under his spell. ‘You think too much into it’, ‘you are too emotional’ I only persisted until their eyes started rolling when ever i mentioned his name. I knew something had to be done.
So, i looked up office bullying and ways to stop it. I couldn’t help but notice the amount of times narcissism showed up on googles results. So i read into it. Soon, i was glued to my screen. I couldn’t believe how accurately it described him. Although I’m NO mental health expert, many would agree that if it quaks like a duck, waddles like a duck then its a god damn DUCK. I knew, without a shadow of a doubt that i was dealing with a narcissist. What i was really ecstatic about was just how simple it was to upset one. Now, me and this guy are about the same size. I knew that he would eventually get violent should i go too far with trying to upset him. But, i was ok with that. Do not attempt this unless you are too. The best remedy for a narcissist is to leave them forever – as the professionals in the field say.
But, i needed to go further. I mean, this guy wanted me to fail miserably. He turned my family against me. I lost friends because of him. And to him, this was all a game. For me, gaining the family business under my control again was imperative – i couldn’t even take out the garbage without someone laughing at me implying that this would be my best attempt to show my worth. So i talked to one of his many enemies, one that went to school with him. He said, that because of his horse’ish looks they would sing the Mr Ed the talking horse jingle to tease him. He apparently almost had a mental break down. This was sugar to me. That Monday, you know exactly what i did. I played that song all day long. But he kept quite. So i continued the next day, but i added a few more tunes to the mix. Horses – by Daryl Braithwaite and the Horse with no name by Americana. By thursday, he had written a lengthy letter to our Boss (My Father). Unfortunately for him, my father didn’t want to get involved, plus he is my father whats he going to do sack me? I continued. Soon, just about every thing i talked about were horses, hay etc. I even found a 12hour video on youtube that played horse noises. Within three weeks, he lost his control he wanted to fight. I was ready, so i confronted him – but he did didily squat. I stood there in front of the entire office, and said what the hells this guys problem? I’m just sitting in my room listening to music and the idiot wants to fight me! He couldn’t bring himself to admit why he was so upset. And so i continued. Now, he is depressed and walks on egg shells around me. If I hear his voice, i start to hum the tunes. Apparently he is looking for a new job, but is so depressed that he can’t bring himself to go to an interview and no, i do not feel bad or sorry.
People say Karma, i say this was HIS karma not mine.
Good luck to all out there dealing with this kind of filth. I re-iterate the point that you should never mess with a narcissist, unless of course you know you can handle your self and have no other option when your backs against the wall.
This EXACTLY my situation!!! Only we work together in a small family owned business and not owned by either one of us, and we are females. For 4 years now I’ve been dealing with this basket case! I’ve worked at this place for 6 years now her 4, I’ve worked very hard to get the pay I make and not a lot of other job opportunities in my small town. I have gone at this issue in every way possible and it’s fascinating now that I know what I’m dealing with on how she behaves from day to day. Not that it makes my life any better but now I know the problem is not me and I’ve built myself back up from her wrath. I’m truly afraid someday I’m going to give into needing satisfaction/relief/karma/ whatever ya wanna call it. She has gone as far as physically hitting her dog when she’s in her way, that alone makes me want to beat her. This is a very horrible disorder and I find myself researching about narcs and just trying to educate myself on how to deal with this problem on a daily basis. I have never in my 36 years met someone like this and I just can’t understand it!!!! Reading others similar experiences helps me feel not so alone. Thanks for sharing.
This story is a thing of great beauty
My father is a raging narcissist. His alcoholism and narcissism ruined our lives and his. He lost a very good job because of it. He was eventually asked to move out because of his threats to kill family pets if he didn’t get his way. Seriously. While still married to my mother, he apparently started living with some other woman who is also an alcoholic. He lied to the whole family…told us she was a he, just a friend, blablabla…when the truth was discovered, he lied about her. He said she threatened him and was blackmailing him, blablabla. Said he didn’t want her in his life, wanted to get back together with Mom (this was said to Mom several times over the years—his lies constantly changing the story–I want you, I hate you, I want you, I hate you…so confusing and he was verbally and emotionally abusive too. While my mother was suddenly ill with a mysterious sickness and not in her right mind, he MOVED ANOTHER WOMAN INTO THE FAMILY HOME where my Mom had been living for several years alone because of his additions and toxic behavior and threats. And he took THAT WOMAN to the NURSING HOME where Mom was staying and LIED TO HER about how this woman was HER FRIEND…NOT telling her that the woman was actually his GIRLFRIEND, whom he was cheating on Mom with!! He LITERALLY put another woman in Mom’s place—living HER life, living in HER house, using HER things. Disgusting. And tried to force us to accept this woman and “be a family?!?!?” Seriously. We believe Mom’s illness could have been triggered by his years of cheating, lies, and back-and-forth as after intensive tests and over a year in care and out of her home, they could find no cause other than stress and anxiety. Mom finally died of a heart attack 11 months after he moved another woman into her home. He is a cruel man. He is withholding many of Mom’s things and living in the house with that woman. Given her some of Mom’s jewelry, etc. Living with her every day sitting at the kitchen table my parents bought after their WEDDING. And yet, in HIS mind, we are horrible, ungrateful, cruel kids. Greedy kids. Nasty kids. Because we don’t like what he has done and disapprove. He is the victim here, in his mind. He forced us to sit around the wedding kitchen table and HOLD HANDS with THAT WOMAN and say grace, he called that woman by his nickname for our MOM, right in front of us, and didn’t even notice. And now he threatens us and says we need to just get over it and let’s all be a family. People, THIS is how a raging narcissist acts. Imagine what one can do in a high office of great power.
Your last sentence is a very scary thought indeed, and is now one we are all actually now living with the current occupant in the White House. If people have never experienced a narcissistic persons behaviors, they are about to get a crash course with Trump.
We experienced it with the Obamas and Hillary Clinton to name only the more recent. The personality disordered list in politics goes back to Founding Fathers.
I wonder how much this article peaked since the election of Trump, specifically the ban. Helps making the case for companies and organisations to stop supporting the US.
My ex wife is a classic narcissist. I didn’t realise until I started researching what the issues were with our relationship.
The most annoying thing about the relationship is that after 12 years I no longer have any idea what a normal relationship is like. We have 3 great children but the marriage was loveless, sexless and she oscilated between extended periods of silence followed by totally unpredictable violent fits of rage. The kind where she was screaming with blood vessels showing in her face.
After 3 different marriage counsellors we got nowhere then on the 4th attempt found one that was good. Her idea was to come together, come back individually, then come back together again at the end. Guess what happened prior to the last meeting ? She cancelled When I asked how her session had gone I was told that it was “none of my business” So, thats kind of when I got it.
The frustrating thing I have found with her (as have others) is a total unwillingness to share any kind of information. She refuses to answer even the most basic question. For example, “Are you taking the children swimming this morning?” Answer “I am trying to get them breakfast” It is totally infuriating.
Hanging up mid phonecall is a totally normal occurrence if the call is not to her liking.
Is this something other people have come across ?
Until recently I have been totally at my wits end though I am starting to understand where it’s coming from. She is still told by her parents (at the age of 42) how special she is. She was 30 when I met her and she remarked later how “virginal” and atractive she must have appeared. Virginal ??? At the age of 30 ? Seriously. For the record she was not.
When we finally broke up it was partly because she had been on an extended binge drinking session which ended with her dishing out verbal abuse to me, vomiting and trying to get into bed with one of our children. To her this was normal….as long as it didn’t happen all the time. The year prior, whilst wasted , she tried to get out of a moving taxi, got home and lay on the driveway . No problem with alcohol though, just likes a drink…….Her parents had to carry her home from an adult party at 7pm because she couldn’t stand up and blamed me for letting it get to that stage. I could go on but its boring.
She ended it by asking me to leave (which I did) and ended up not going back to the house. Subsequently I lost my job and she now says “Everyone wonders how you can look at yourself in the mirror having left your family”
So what I would say to people who are on the receiving end. It is ultra – difficult to deal with. But, the only way to stop losing your mind is to ignore as much as possible and treat them as if they are a sick person. Trying to understand the verbal outbursts and irrational behaviour only serves to drive yourself insane.
Thank God for the internet, without it I would have no idea what was going on
Wow, yes, no questions ever answered!
Yes, hangs up phone!
Yes, raging functioning yet black out drunk!
Yes verbal emotional physical abuse!
Threatens to kill me, kill himself by drinking to death !
Actually said he’s a sociopath!
Admitted to never loving except for me of course! Right!
So much more, and I’m 46, can’t believe I have come across a human with such rage conviction force yet so passionate charming and incredibly sexy on the once a month moment he decides he’s ready for intimacy .
I am blown away by what I’ve read here, what I’m experiencing and living with such terror.
Thank you all, this is so sad but helps to understand a little more how real it is!
Russ, yes yes yes. For 2 years I thought something was wrong with me. I did not know people like this existed. I have a beautiful boy with her and she’s prego with another right now. I have zero desire to be with her but I’d love to wake up with them and help spare them from this nonsense.
The rages are premeditated to avoid third parties intervening or witnessing these attacks. They aren’t a hot temper they are callous deliberate and the target has no idea of how they triggered the narcissist.
The victim is completely lean the dark, once the line is crossed the rages are frequent, my narcissist repressed his full blown rage for two years, once he crossed the line they were a weekly event.
Extremely traumatic to be on the receiving end of this, it feels like rape all you can do is escape quietly and go no contact. It’s their cold detachment and personalised attack coupled with a time to maximise th impact of the abuse. They can repress but have chosen not to do that.
They’ll blame you for their behaviour adding to the surreal nature of the terror they have instilled, they are highly aroused during raging which is creepy.
After 48 years of manipulative abuse from my narcissistic brother, I cut the cord. No contact for almost five months. I gave up an inheritance (which he, as executor of my mother’s estate, refuses to release). I endured decades of his obscenities, his tantrums, his violence, his manipulations. He built his wealth on the backs of my hard-working parents, manipulated his way into being their Power of Attorney, and then refused to honor their testamentary wishes. I’d rather start from zero (financially) and re-build my wealth and self-esteem without the stress of a dealing with a narcissist. It’s not worth it. There’s no “half-way” in this case; every time he “apologizes,” it’s a set-up for bigger abuse in the future. I have never felt more free and happy than I do today. Gone is . . the gut-wrenching dread associated with seeing my brother on holidays, enduring his abuse just because he is “family.” No more. I surround myself with good friends, and with each day of “no contact,” the sun shines brighter than I’ve ever seen it.
Wow. What a weird situation. Is he your full brother? Not half or step? Do you know how he developed that personality disorder? Did u see it coming?
AWESOME Article! Bravo to author and contributors. What an excellent resource that validates my life and many others, in concrete accurate ways.
Thank You Alexander Burgemeester! Well Done.
One of the first clues I had about my girlfriend’s narcissistic profile was the amount of negative energy she displayed in ordinary conversation. A common phrase she used for all sorts of things and situations was “I hate . . . “, and there was much that she hated from politics to consumer issues, particular persons or institutions, clothing styles, American “values” (European manners and morals were generally superior), certain movies, TV in general, various tastes in food, furniture, automobiles, you name it. When I once stated, “my, it just seems you HATE so many things!” it set her back because it was so blatant. From then on she started to correct herself by substituting other words and phrases for “I hate . . ” But the negative energy was still there, and it really put me on guard and prepared me when that energy was turned on me.
Advice: Don’t hang on. That negative energy will never go away, and you can expect a pattern of rage to continue forever. And snobbery is a tell-tale, ugly flaw of the unhappy narcissist.
My boyfriend is a narcissist. There are good things about him and good parts of his personality but if I dare to disagree with him about something he will lecture me until I give in and call me stupid or naive if I don’t give in; If I don’t say thank you loudly enough or gratefully enough then I have injured his ego and I will suffer the wrath either then or he will keep it in until he spits it out in a rage later. If I am feeling particularly brave and mildly criticize him then he gets very angry and usually goes on to tell me all of my flaws in response. Basically I try to keep on his good side, but if I am tired or relaxed after having a couple of drinks then I just can’t be bothered to hold my tongue and if I haven’t shown him enough adoring respect for one reason or another then the Narcissistic Rage arrives. It looks like he is rushing into the room to hit me but he stops short of doing that , sometimes he may slam a door and rant and rave or hit a wall. But the worst thing is emotional aspect, whenever we argue, and I mean EVERY time, he turns the argument around to tear me apart for everything I do wrong and that every problem not matter what it is , is turned around to the fact that I am messy and untidy and therefore he calls me a b%tch and it is my fault that he has gone into a rage because I cause him to be unhappy. He will NEVER admit to having an ego problem and will NEVER admit to being wrong. Sometimes I feel angry at his parents for raising a son that thinks he has the right to feel so superior and entitled. The sad thing is the negativity that he emits – any issue is a massive problem, he doesnt see solutions only hassles that a man as great as him shouldnt have to deal with, he treats any problem as if its the end of the world and he is angry about having to sort it out, any poor driving on the road upsets him unreasonably – a 5 minute drive to work has my stomach in knots due to vibe of unnecessary anger. I wish he would learn to be happy and not expect to get his joy out of other people appreciating him. Maybe therapy would help but he would only go on and on about how its all my fault which i just don’t have the stomach for.
Seriously re-consider marrying him.
Hi, it is as if you were writing about my partner. If you should see my comment I would appreciate to hear from you, what has happened in these 3 years.
There’s no possible way to have a happy and healthy or safe and secure relationship of any kind (family member, significant other, “friend”, co-worker, neighbor…) with a narcissist because of their poor self-esteem and the constant burden/demand they place on the backs of others (even their own children) to bolster their egos.
The problem is that narcissists are always filled with anger because of their feelings of inferiority, so they must constantly downgrade whomever (even pets) to feel make them feel superior.
I was involved with the two types of narcissists…one was passive-aggressive and the other aggressive. The passive one set out to destroy my self-confidence and professional career, and the aggressive one verbally and brutally assaulted me numerous times in attempt to kill me, and set out to destroy my family relationships, my self-confidence, and my professional career.
I have 2 sisters who are passive-aggressive types of narcissists,
And as a registered nurse, I’ve had many, many encounters with jealous, narcissistic bosses and co-workers who bullied me out of my jobs, because they were lazy, incompetent, unethical, and abusive to patients, and I’m a good nurse.
The passive-aggressive (cowardly) narcissists are the most dangerous, since there’s little or no warning of attacks, and their attacks on others are often completely unprovoked. In other words, there’s nothing you need to say or do to trigger an attack.
You don’t even need to know them for them be secretly jealous of you and plan an attack on you.
And if they do know you, the only thing you need to do to trigger an attack is to be your happy go lucky, successful self.
My best advice to those out there who aren’t narcissists is to test the self-esteem of potential friends and significant others to see what reaction you get.
For example, break a lunch date at last minute, or be 10 minutes late in arriving to lunch and don’t call to let him/her know you’re running late. I know it sounds inconsiderate, but a normal, healthy minded person wouldn’t be at all bothered by an occasional last minute change in plans or if you’re running late.
On the contrary, a narcissist will go ballistic in one way passive-aggressive, or aggressive way or another. A passive-aggressive person will likely retaliate by doing the same thing to you that you did to he/she, and an aggressive person will likely show facial expressions and body language of anger…red face…huffy-puffy body language, and possibly resort to yelling at you.
For example, I was once dating a narcissist who flew into a fit of rage and threatened to punch me in the face because I backed away when he moved forward to kiss me, because I noticed a cold sore on his lip.
I cannot stress enough the danger to yourself, children, family, and pets by getting involved with a narcissist.
A friendship or relationship with narcissists is pure, miserable hell, and a narcissist will not stop until they destroy those whom they feel jealous anger towards.
My narc sister has been trying to steal the inheritance. I am taking her to court and of course, I am winning. However, I am afraid of her rage and possible violent behavior. We have an order of protection in place. Nevertheless, I am still concerned. I wonder how many people with NPD actually go on to kill their victims.
So many of these stories touch a chord for me. Both my father and older sister are narcissists who have a ‘public persona’ and a ‘family persona’
The older sister constantly describes our father as ‘ deceptive, vengeful, manipulative, twisted’ yet she is actually the worse of the two.
She was diagnosed with late stage cancer 2 years ago which she took as a massive insult and is now only weeks away from death.
I have tried so hard to be there for her when she has been at her lowest ebb but as soon as she feels better she spends all her time meeting friends who tell her how wonderful and amazing she is .
A few days ago we had a discussion, I was upset because she was deliberately not answering my text messages and she accused me of constantly checking up on her and that my anxiety (i.e. concern) was stressing her out.
I have been trying to heal the past as I have so few relatives left, and have taken some time off work to try and prepare myself for the 3rd close family bereavement I will have in 5 years. She is furious that I have done so and I tried to explain in a clear, non-accusatory email how I felt but in return I received a vitriolic, venomous reply stating she now wanted “to spend even less time with me than before” and that I wasn’t to contact or see her again before Christmas Day (when we are all expected to play happy families)
I was so disgusted with the content of this email I actually feel now that I don’t want to see her again or even attend her funeral .
The truth is I have been grieving for the loss of a sister who hasn’t actually existed for years, the one who used to give me backies on her bike and walk to school with.
Social Media plays a huge part in her life. She constantly airbrushes photos of herself and adds pictures of every coffee and meal out to her Instagram account. When not showing people what an amazing wonderful life she has she is constantly messaging friends through FB or email.
She won’t , however, reply to my daily texts asking how she is. I’ve read a few articles about NPD and I realise she took my email as a personal insult ( it wasn’t, as any rational person would have been able to see) As such she has flown into a Narcissistic Rage and deliberately tried to hurt me. Unbeknownst to her this has actually backfired as it has finally exposed to me just how nasty and evil she is capable of being.
She knows I will be deeply affected by her death and so she is yielding her one last weapon to intensify this hurt by denying me the opportunity to have any healing conversations with her , prior to her impending death.
Over the last 2 years she has deliberately withheld both good and bad news regarding her treatment progress from the family. Her friends, however, plus anyone else who happens to be around, get immediate updates.
In many ways her passing will bring relief yet I am still deeply hurt and saddened thinking of the sister I have already lost.
I also feel Incredibly sorry for her as I realise her NPD must come from deep insecurity and unhappiness.
NPDs always hurt the ones they love the most. They only ever reveal their true selves to people they know won’t abandon them.
Reading these posts I see both my mother and sister in them. They are both narcissists. My mother passed this year at 91 and my sister has taken over everything–the house (she got our Mom to give her POA). My sister didnt even go to see our mother when she was dying. I came in from the next state and told her our Mom was dying, but my sister already knew this, and withheld it from me. Thats because she didnt want to be bothered going to the nursing home, etc. My mother taught my sister well. My mother used to ignore me, insult me when I was a small child. My sister is 6 years younger than me and followed suit. Im also married 2 years now (Im 63) to a narcissist, whom is also passive agressive. Time didnt teach me any lessons as I was extremely needy for money at the time and husband has the means to support me easily. Im not going to get into a lengthy part of what he does, but after counseling, I see its no use. He wont change and even the counselor nailed him for his behavior, which never changes. He got worse after we got married
So I learned to basically not be involved with him, just do my own thing. I pray and read my bible and ask for guidance. I feel peace but when hubby is around he steals it. In fact hubby steals and destroys the me inside my being. So Im done with him after such a short marriage. I told him I dont care at all anymore and just do as he pleases and leave me out of it. At my age I should have known better. I dont plan to stay with him, Im biding my time until I get SS and pension, then I’ll be gone. I want to live a happy life for how many years Ive got left.
While married and seeing a marriage counselor, he was physically abusive one night. It appeared to come out of nowhere, as I was standing in the bathroom brushing my teeth one minute, and the next minute I was slammed into the toilet. In hindsight, he had consumed a large amount of bourbon a few hours before, and I had gently offered what I thought was a constructive way to deal with a contractor. Those two things turned on his explosive rage and led to my filing for divorce after 20 years of marriage. The police were contacted and they took statements from both of us. He made up a totally different story about what happened. Our statements were sent to the prosecutors office, and the prosecutor dismissed any charges. So because the narcissist is such a proficient and prolific liar, they get away with their abusive behavior. Before I could leave the house for good, he physically attacked me again. I called the police, we each gave our statements, he lied again, and nothing happened to him, again. It’s a special circle of hell that one lives in when you made the mistake of allowing a narcissist into your life!
My younger sister was always vibrant and loved to grab the spotlight as a child. I was more reserved and didn’t mind not being in the spotlight. As we grew older and were raising our kids, I had a very good job as a paralegal and she was an assistant bank manager and an officer of the bank. Wherever we went she would find a way to tell the store clerk, or one of my inlaws, or anyone – “I’m a banker.” Then there were all the times she called me to rant about her boss after she had a few glasses of wine in the evening. The thing is – I always listened, comforted her, defended her. It was never enough. She finally got fired (but to this day brags about the severance package they gave her). Then she started working with her husband who had his own successful business. They are very successful together although he backs off when she gets angry and she has a quick temper. She has never wanted to hear about my successes. If I got an award, which I did, I felt like I had to play it down because she would get strangely quiet while congratulating me. Then when it came for my time to retire and my husband threw a nice retirement party. She didn’t show up. It was like she could not stand to see the accolades I received from all my friends and co-workers who attended. Now we are getting older. She now tells me that my husband is jealous of my relationship with her and that’s why he keeps busy when she visits or just comes in the room to interrupt us by asking me a question. The truth is, my husband is appalled by the way the conversations begin and end all about her.
The latest episode involves her coming to visit me for the weekend. My husband was out of town. She got there and we had a glass of wine. On the way to dinner, in the car, she kept picking at me, other members of our family, our parents. She started telling stories of how mistreated she was by all of us. I couldn’t not recall these stories – so I said “where was I when this happened?” That was the catalyst for her to say I was not there for her. The more she drank at dinner the worse it got. She told me I was talking too loudly, that I had a bad habit of asking too many questions but (sarcastically) that was probably a biproduct of being in the business of the law. I leaned over close to her so I would not talk loudly and disagreed with her. Katie bar the door. She accused me of coming at her. By the time we got back to my house, she was in a rage. “F-you F-[our other sister]. After drinking way too much, she got in her car despite my begging her not to and drove the hour it takes back to her home. This was just a couple weeks ago. I have been reaching out on the internet to understand her behavior. I think she is a narcissist and I am co-dependent. I’m going to check into getting help for myself.
A neighbour has been a problem for about a year now. having just read about narcissistic rage I’m sure she is a classic case. to previous outbursts over very trivial things culminated in the Third where she ripped up some flowers and neighbourhood planted and threw them in front of his car. after this, she pulled out some lawn edging I had installed in our common area threat over a fence.These trivial annoyances lead me to demand why she did this, at which she exploded in rage with threats and profanity.
Despite being screamed at f*** off repeatedly I stood my ground and said I’m going nowhere which made her lose control completely & push me away in the face and then spat in my face.
I disagree with your advice on dealing with such a situation; people like her need to be confronted with the truth and I called the police who interviewed both parties and then advised me to apply for a violence restraining order which I did.
this woman has such a superiority complex and is convinced she can do whatever she wants including damage to property and theft.
I’m 76 years old so being spat in my face is a covid risk; this damn fool doesn’t know the maximum penalty is 2 years jail. Now I’m starting a personal assault proceeding.