Throwback Thursday: My Inner Narcissist.

Originally posted on January 8, 2015

envy pride
The beautiful paintings in this article are by Marta Dahlig at Deviantart.

Narcissism isn’t limited to narcissists.

Most people have some narcissistic traits and that’s why it’s dangerous to try to diagnose someone you don’t know pretty well or have lived with. Mislabeling happens a lot, and ACONS and victims of abuse tend to be quick to label anyone who shows any narcissistic traits as a narcissist, because we’re so hypervigilant about everything and trust no one.

I hate my narcissistic traits, but I do have a few. Now’s the time I “come out” of the closet about them.

We also can’t forget a little narcissism is actually healthy and protects us to some extent from victimization. No one can be completely unselfish. It’s just not realistic or good for survival.

My two most deadly narcissistic sins are:

1. Envy. I’ve gotten better over the years, but I used to be pathologically envious of those who had more than I did, were more attractive, came from loving homes, had a better job or made more money (practically everybody!) I don’t think this is uncommon in people who were raised and/or married narcissists, and we are not incorrect about having been cheated in life. We have a right to feel like it’s unfair. It’s still an ugly, soul-destroying emotion though, because it makes us hate ourselves even more when we think we fall short of others.

I think what sets my envy apart from true narcissistic envy is that I have never had any desire to ruin or take away someone’s else’s good fortune. I might feel bitter and brood about it, but I never felt it was my right to interfere. Sometimes the people I envied could inspire me too. I also didn’t necessarily hate the people I envied, even when I wanted to. Or maybe it just sets me apart from the MALIGNANT narcissists, because those are the dangerous ones who really want to hurt you.

I’ve been getting a lot better–but another deadly sin that is envy’s polar opposite is slowly taking its place…

2. Pride (vanity). I haven’t experienced too much of this until recently. I think some pride is normal and healthy. If you have no pride you feel like you deserve nothing. But I have noticed a tendency to brag about this blog when it’s doing well or my stats are high. Maybe that’s a normal thing for bloggers (I think we tend to be competitive) but I bet it’s also made a few people think I’m a narcissist playing the victim. I hope not, but I still worry about it. I’m always tempted to delete those stats posts after they go up, but then again, why not share good news when you have some to share? Because until recently, I hardly ever had any good news to share. So I’m like a little kid on Christmas Day or something.

I still have to watch this though, because you can drive people away with too much bragging, and pride, as pleasant an emotion as it can be, can turn you into a narcissist eventually. It’s a slippery slope to selfishness and evil. I can’t ever forget that my primary focus with this blog is to get better, and maybe help others get better too through my writing. Not to have X number of views or Y levels of visibility. It’s not about me anyway, it’s about what God wants for me and how he wants me to be of service.

Acquired narcissism due to good fortune is probably why there are so many narcissists in Hollywood and the music industry (not all celebrities are narcissists of course). Their success has probably changed them. Or it drives them crazy. I think only the most mentally sound and insightful celebrities are able to escape from the clutches of acquired narcissism (or serious mental conditions such as bipolar disorder, drug addiction, and even psychosis). It can’t be easy being famous and sought after by millions of strangers and having to be “on” for the media all the time.

Then there’s the other kind of pride–the kind that keeps people from admitting when they’ve been wrong or showing humility when it would benefit them and others to do so. Fortunately, I don’t think I’m guilty of that kind of pride very much. I can admit when I’ve been wrong and am not “too proud” to do so. I think narcissists pretty much have a monopoly on that type of pride.

My last “deadly sin” is sloth. I can be the laziest person you ever met. I’m a world class procrastinator. But I don’t think that’s a narcissist trait.

sloth

What are yours?

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About luckyotter

Recovering from BPD and C-PTSD due to narcissistic abuse from childhood. Married to a sociopath for 20 years. Proud INFJ, Enneagram type 4w5. Animal lover, music lover, cat mom, unapologetic geek, fan of the absurd, progressive Catholic, mom to 2, mental illness stigma activist, anti-Trumper. #RESISTANCE
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14 Responses to Throwback Thursday: My Inner Narcissist.

  1. ashualec says:

    Isn’t realization the first step to healing? I am sure as you do better in life, you will overgrow your envy.

    And NO you don’t brag about your blog. You are just happy for your achievement and it gives you a sense of accomplishment which you so desperately desire and deserve too. Isn’t low self-esteem one of the reasons, people attract abusive people into their lives?

    So go on be proud of your self and love yourself the most.

    Liked by 1 person

    • luckyotter says:

      I wrote this three years ago. Since then, I’ve been doimng a lot of work on myself, through therapy , getting involved in a church, and other things. I can happily say envy/pride isn’t that much of a problem for me anymore. Sloth definitely still is though (that’s why I don’t post more often)

      Like

  2. shiarrael says:

    My go-to deadly sin would be Pride – which is why I don’t think your (earned and deserved) pride in your blog is anywhere near narcissistic levels πŸ˜‰

    I’ve never been good at the whole humility thing. Not even when it might have been a good idea (You know, that annoying “Brazen It Out” girl. Goodness had nothing to do with it, dearie).
    One the other hand, it means when I DO freely show it, it’s genuine.
    I’m also notorious for not dealing all too graciously with false humility.

    Worst part? I’m flat out rejecting any accusations of being self-absorbed even while demanding someone feed me tacos and tell me I’m pretty πŸ˜›

    Liked by 1 person

  3. susanbotchie says:

    Dear LuckyOtter and Friends, Lucky, oh the lovely pictures…the dresses, they make me giddy πŸ™‚ My big sin is an angry spirit. Scorners (narcs) tick me off big-time, and it’s only through the Lord’s restraint that i’m not using bad words to describe these ruiners-of-everything. What really vexes me is: there are way too many churches(?) where the people expect bullied people to simply repress their anger. Well, we all know that repression doesn’t work. Yeah, i know, the angry spirit has got to go, i get that part. But going around acting pollyanna-happy…uhm, that’s just plain being a liar.

    Liked by 1 person

    • luckyotter says:

      I agree . Anger (wrath) is good where appropriate. Stuffing feelings is worse. But I guess it’s a sin when people just walk around constantly itching for a fight. Repressing anger doesn’t work either though. Get angry, handle it maturely (not lashing out violently or with malice), then let it go and move on — is probably the healthiest way to handle anger.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. When I first entered adulthood I didn’t know how abnormal my family was. I had a vindictive streak because that was seen as a sign of strength. Fortunately I met healthy people who were wiling to challenge me on this. And fortunately I was healthy enough to change. The saddest sight in the world is the sight of an elderly Narcissist living in isolation because she doesn’t understand that its wrong to lie about people.

    Liked by 1 person

    • luckyotter says:

      It is a very sad sight. It seems to get worse as people age too. Just look at our president — a pathetic, old narcissist who doesn’t know how to do anything but lie.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It seems that narcissists resort to the same strategies regardless of social position: the fear of being ‘found out’, the ridiculous smear campaigns, the grandiosity and the inability to tolerate love.

        Behind the facade of superiority self loathing person in pain but there is no comforting them; their reactions are too toxic.

        Once I realized how terrible their lives are I learned to feel compassion.

        I think on some level narcissists know they don’t know how to love and they envy those who do.

        Liked by 1 person

        • luckyotter says:

          I agree with this. I think there is a lot of envy of those who know how to love/feel empathy, which is why they denigrate people who have those traits. It’s revenge and pathological envy of those things they wish they had but have no way of ever being able to acquire themselves.

          Liked by 1 person

          • They envy people with real talent and can’t stop themselves from stealing their ideas. This is why narcissists turn on the people they say they love. They suck up to someone with a gift or a creative idea and have to destroy him because they can’t allow the source of their ‘genius’ to discredit them.

            Liked by 1 person

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