A list of useful blogs and books about NPD, narcissistic abuse, and BPD.

These are all listed under my “Resources and Support” tab in the header, but I wanted to call attention to them. I have added some new ones. My apologies if you don’t see your blog listed here. Unfortunately, I can’t list them all but if you want me to add yours, please comment and I’ll be happy to add it.

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Here are some websites, books and blogs focusing primarily on Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), narcissistic abuse, and Borderline personality disorder (BPD), though some touch on other personality disorders as well. This is only a small sampling of what’s available. The Internet is loaded with websites about NPD and narcissistic abuse; a quick Google search will bring up many that I have neglected to list here. BPD is not so widely covered, but is becoming more so.

Blogs, Websites and Forums

Dealing with Manipulative People — Dr. George K. Simon’s excellent blog about Cluster B personality disorders (Narcissistic, Borderline, Antisocial, and Histrionic Personality Disorders) with a focus on NPD. Dr. Simon is also the author of several books, which are listed below.

Out of the Fog — excellent support forum for people dealing with those with personality disorders and other mental health problems (or who have a disorder themselves). Every personality disorder recognized by the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) is covered. I never posted here myself, but I’ve lurked there a lot and found the site very interesting and helpful.

Narcissists Suck — Anna Valerious is a survivor of psychopathic parents, and her blog is excellent. It can also be irreverent and hilarious. Her take no prisoners style may take some getting used to, but she has a lot of heart and a LOT to say about narcissists. Valerious is a Christian, and she sometimes quotes from the Bible, but for the most part, you don’t have to be a Christian or any sort of believer to appreciate her blog. She hasn’t posted in it for awhile, but the articles are still relevant, entertaining, and useful.

An Upturned Soul — longer articles than average, but well written, intelligent, and always fascinating to read. There was no way I could leave this one off this list, since I have reblogged several of her articles already.

PsychopathyAwareness Blog — good blog about psychopathy right here at WordPress. The blogger really knows their stuff.

What Makes Narcissists Tick?— This blog was created by Kathy Krajco, an author about narcissistic abuse who was well respected in the community of narcissistic abuse victims, until her untimely death several years ago. Due to that, the blog hasn’t been updated in a long time, and many of the links don’t work, but it still contains both practical and fascinating information about narcissists and why they are the way they are and why they do what they do.

NarcissisticMother.com is a website focusing on self help for the adult children of narcissistic parents (ACONs), particularly mothers, since in our culture, mothers still have the strongest influence on their children.

SociopathWorld is an intriguing website from the point of view of sociopaths (not exactly the same as psychopaths but very similar). It’s interesting to “get inside their heads” to help understand why they act the way they do. It’s creepy and fascinating how dissociated from emotions, themselves and others they often feel and some explain it surprisingly well.
Similar to SociopathWorld is Psychopathic Writings, a blog written by a psychopath whose articles are interesting and well informed. If you like sites like these, please also check out Kiasherosjourney.

Country of Liars: a website by and for the victims of sociopaths and psychopaths. The blog’s owner, like so many other similar blog owners was the scapegoat of a family of such people. Well written blog.

Lady With A Truck’s Blog: Like so many survivors of narcissistic abuse, LWAT struggles with poverty. Our abusers ruin us on every level, even our ability to earn a living. This is a wonderful blog by a lady with an attitude and a heart. Her writing draws you in like a novel, she’s inspirational, and she’s often quite funny too.

Constant Supply: The Narcissist’s Wife. A blog by a woman married to a malignant narcissist.

Faces of Narcissism: a fairly new blog written by Joanna Moore, a narcissistic abuse survivor. She was married to an abusive, sociopathic man who she is No Contact with today. A good mix of practical, no nonsense advice and personal stories.

Grace for My Heart: Although this blog written by a Christian pastor isn’t specifically about narcissism, it’s a popular topic on his blog (he writes about narcissism every Friday in his “Narcissist Friday” posts) because of all mental disorders, NPD (along with Antisocial Personality Disorder) is the most likely to have a spiritual component. Interesting and uplifting blog for Christians and those interested in God’s grace and spirituality. One of my favorite blogs.

Worldly Annoyances — ACON blog with a biblical Christian perspective. Sue can also be extremely funny at times.  I don’t always agree with her literal Biblical views, but I agree with much of what she has to say just the same.   Her posts are short and sometimes make me smile.

Galesmind:  Blogger who writes about narcissism and a lot of other topics too.  Often funny and entertaining.  Gale also writes a lot about Internet abuse (bullies, trolls and other sociopaths roaming the web).

Narcwriters: a listing of personal blogs about narcissism and blogs by psychologists with a focus on NPD. A good resource that lists many blogs that I have overlooked here.

The Narcissistic Continuum: This blog is great. It differs a bit in format from most other narcissism blogs because of the way its articles are ordered according to severity across the narcissistic spectrum, from “healthy narcissism” (narcissism is good in very small doses–just like heavy metals in the blood are necessary but become poison if excessive) all the way to psychopathy/sociopathy. CZBZ’s blog is also very easy on the eyes, in my opinion.

TNC’s owner also has a forum, Web of Narcissism (WoN), which is inactive but there’s still a lot of great information there.

Lenora Thompson — Psychcentral/narcissism: Lenora Thompson is a survivor of narcissistic abuse who writes a blog about narcissism on Psychcentral.  Check her out!

No! It is Not Your Fault!   A blog about narcissism and narcissistic abuse from an unlikely writer who himself has an NPD diagnosis but is unusual because of his self-awareness and desire to heal from his disorder (he is in treatment).   Ruud’s blog is definitely worth a follow.  Reading his story brought me to tears and I don’t cry easily.  He also gives good, practical advice to narcissistic abuse survivors.

Psychforums: Online support for anyone with a mental disorder and those trying to understand and help loved ones who have them. Active section on NPD and other personality disorders, and includes posts from people suffering from NPD as well as their victims.  I posted here for awhile, and the narcs and “nons” (as they are called) seem to co-exist here quite nicely.

Discussing Dissociation: Thoughts from a Trauma Therapist — Although this site focuses on those suffering from DID (dissociative identity disorder), there is much information and help here for anyone suffering from other mental disorders caused by abuse and trauma, such as C-PTSD. The symptoms of C-PTSD can closely mimic those of Borderline Personality Disorder and include dissociative features.

BPD Transformation — Blog written by a former sufferer of BPD who was cured. Ed’s posts are sometimes a bit scholarly but incredibly educational for those who like a bit of meat in their blog posts and dislike things being dumbed down the way they so often are on the web. This blogger probably knows more about the Cluster B disorders and their treatment methods than most mental health experts. But it’s not all graduate-level reading. Some of his articles are quite hilarious too.

Make BPD Stigma Free! — a blog devoted to getting BPD recognized as a form of complex PTSD and taking away the harmful “crazy” and “evil” stigmas a BPD diagnosis carries.

Healing From BPD is a good website for people suffering from BPD with information about DBT and other treatments.

Borderline Bella is a university student from England who has struggled with both having BPD and the stigma it often carries.   She is a new blogger here on WordPress and her writing is always honest and heartfelt.  Her blog is definitely worth a follow!

Ramen Noodle Nation: Humans Need Not Apply: This blog is not specifically for ACONs and survivors of narcissistic abuse, but because so many of us struggle with poverty (either after being taken for everything we own or just because we were trained to be “failures” by our parents and never given the tools to do well in life), I think this website can be helpful and validating to those of us struggling with poverty or even just living on a very tight budget. Definitely on the fiscally liberal side of the political fence, this blog calls out the malignant narcissism inherent in our culture of greed and low empathy for the poor.

There are also many other personal blogs of survivors of psychopathic abuse on WordPress. There’s way too many to list  here!   If you have a blog that focuses on narcissism or BPD that you don’t see listed here, let me know and I will add it to the list. Also, if you know of any other websites you would like to see listed, let me know and I will add them.

Books
Malignant Self-Love — You can purchase or download the free eBook by Sam Vaknin. Vaknin is a narcissist who wrote this extremely detailed book about NPD. You can read part of it free online (PDF format). It is also available for purchase. There’s been a lot of controversy surrounding Vaknin’s credentials but it can’t be denied he definitely knows a lot about this subject and gives advice on how to deal with people like himself. Vaknin is unusual–a narcissist who has enough insight to know his own motives and warn people accordingly. However, given that insight is a characteristic narcissists generally don’t have, is Vaknin really a narcissist at all?  Well…yes, he is.

Vaknin is also the subject of the documentary, I, Psychopath. He may or may not actually be a psychopath, but he does act pretty narcissistic in the film most of the time and bullies the filmmaker. Definitely worth watching even if you don’t bother with his book.

People of the Lie: The Hope for Healing Human Evil, by M. Scott Peck, MD: First published in 1983, this is probably the first book that accurately described the malignant narcissist. I wrote a review of this book in this post. While not perfect, this book holds a special place in my heart because it was the book that allowed me to first identify my mother as an “evil” narcissist. Ironically, my narc-enabler father sent it to me (even though he always defended my mother’s behavior).

Dr. George K. Simon (mentioned above) is the author of several self help books about “character disorders,” especially NPD. I have read his In Sheep’s Clothing: Understanding and Dealing with Manipulative People, and Character Disturbance: The Phenomenon of our Age (longer and goes into much more detail about psychopathy and malignant forms of narcissism than In Sheep’s Clothing but both books are excellent.

Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of Psychopaths Among Us, by William Hare, MD. Extremely readable and informative book about psychopathic behavior, from everyday psychopaths who try to make our lives miserable through the worst serial killers and other criminals who show no remorse for their deeds. Hare describes the different types of psychopaths, and the possible origins of their psychopathy, whether it’s genetic or acquired later through their environment and learning. Many quotes from psychopaths are included, and some of these are chilling. Hare sums up by discussing what may be done to help the psychopath (not much!) and for those who must deal with them, advice for handling them better. I definitely recommend this book.

Skills Training Manual for Treating Borderline Personality Disorder by Marsha M. Linehan. This is a workbook of practical exercises to help people suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder better cope with their unstable emotions and learn how to regulate them better. It was a great help to me while I was hospitalized in 1996 for Major Depression and was at that time also diagnosed with BPD. I still have my copy and recently dusted it off and started using it again.

Martha Stout’s “The Sociopath Next Door,”  is more about antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) than narcissism, but as ASPD is also marked by an inability to feel empathy or have a conscience (and may be on the same spectrum as NPD), so it fits here.

I also recommend Dr. James F. Masterson’s “The Emerging Self,” a scholarly manual on treating narcissistic disorders of the self, complete with case histories from therapy sessions.  He has successfully treated people with both the Borderline and Narcissistic personality disorders. If you like something a little less scholarly, his excellent book Search for the Real Self: Unmasking the Personality Disorders of Our Age, about BPD and NPD, also contains case histories from his practice and tools for understanding these disorders and what causes them.

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Knowing the Narcissist: a triggering blog for ACONs but could be useful.

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I stumbled across a WordPress blog yesterday written by a self-professed Malignant Narcissist. The name of his blog is, simply enough, Knowing the Narcissist.

Indeed, to read Malignarc’s entries is to know the mind of a high spectrum, unrepentant, sociopathic malignant narcissist. I can’t tell too much about the man from the posts I have read, other than that he claims some sort of renown (his fame may be exaggerated for all I know, after all he’s a narcissist and they’re known to exaggerate their achievements*), he lives in Great Britain, and he’s unceremoniously devalued and discarded (and possibly done worse) many hapless women. He’s in treatment and talks about his sessions quite a bit. He likes to challenge, gaslight, and play mind games with his therapist. From what I can gather, he’s not in treatment by choice but by obligation, which makes me wonder if he committed some sort of crime.

Knowing the Narcissist is creepy and unsettling, and could be triggering to many victims of narcissistic abuse. The first thing that hits you on the blog is a huge banner with a fiery background on which huge black letters spell out the word “EVIL” (it turns out this is the name of one of his novels but it’s still fitting).   It’s not exactly a subtle warning. You can leave now, or keep reading at your own risk. Being endlessly curious, of course I kept reading. His posts are addictive. They grab you and hold you in a vise grip, and even when you don’t think you can stand another second of the bleak and frightening view from inside the man’s deeply disordered mind, you simply can’t tear yourself away.

As with another narcissistic writer who writes about his NPD, Sam Vaknin, you feel pulled against your will into Malignarc’s dark vortex, but unlike Vaknin, he’s completely self-satisfied and happy (as much as it’s possible for a narcissist to be happy) with his own narcissism. Also unlike Vaknin, he hasn’t had the good manners to exile himself to a remote Eastern European country and marry a woman from there. Malignarc is still very much at large. Ladies beware!

I boldly commented under one of his posts, asking him why he writes a blog like this, thinking he must have some small semblance of a conscience that drives him to do so. He replied back almost right away, explaining that he started it because he “likes an audience” and that it’s also a requisite of his treatment. Well, at least he answered my question, and promptly at that.

Whoever has required him to get psychological treatment is wasting their time (and money, if it’s being paid for). I’m one of those who thinks that certain lower-spectrum narcissists (usually covert) who become self-aware can be healed if they’re willing to do the emotional work, but a narcissist like Malignarc can’t ever be cured or successfully treated, since he expresses no regrets over how he has treated the people in his life and appears to have no conscience or empathy whatsoever. He also appears to have almost no emotions other than seething rage. He gloats about the way he devalued and discarded one of his victims, writing glowingly about his new source of supply (who no doubt will become his next victim):

Yes I am with Lauren now. She is wonderful. She is everything I have ever wanted and I am her soul mate. I know that we are going to be very happy together now. She is the one. I know I thought that of you, but you misled me. Lauren is not like that. I am moving in with her next week. It makes perfect sense. I want to be with her all of the time. She is beautiful, just look at her, perfectly put together. She is so shiny and new. I am head over heels in love with her, I cannot be apart from her. Take a look. If you had been more like her then I would not have had to punish you the way I did. That is not going to happen with Lauren. No way. I can only see a bright and beautiful future for us. I hope she falls pregnant soon as our child will be such a wonder to behold. Thank God I did not have a child with you. Imagine that? Good God that would have been terrible having to share a child with a monster like you. Lauren will be a first class mother, we have already talked about it and I can tell that she is keen. She adores me and always will. Not like you. You had your chance but you messed it up. You only have yourself to blame.

This diatribe goes on and on. The discarded woman the post is directed to shouldn’t hate or be jealous of Lauren; she should warn her.

Knowing the Narcissist could be useful to victims, if you’re able to stomach it. You do get a close-up look inside the mind of a person with severe NPD and he does a good job of explaining the motivations, machine-like manipulations, and soulless Machiavellianism driving his toxic actions. His words could serve as a warning to the rest of us, by serving as a graphic example of what really makes a narcissist tick so you don’t get duped into falling for one of these characters ever again. I can’t say he’s performing a public service, since that’s clearly not this man’s intention, but it could be a side-benefit.

*He’s an author who writes under the name of HG Tudor

Important updates about this blog.

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New blog Down The Rabbit Hole

Things are beginning to gel together finally, after not quite knowing what direction this blog was going to take, after my shattering discovery about myself early this month.

I’ve been writing (and of course reading) a lot more about healing/treating NPD and BPD, but I felt strongly that those types of articles were out of place on a blog meant for survivors of narcissistic abuse. In the past, I posted them here, but they were becoming numerous as my own self awareness began to percolate to the surface of my conscious mind.

When I made my devastating self-discovery (which is actually one of the three best things that ever happened to me!), I didn’t feel at all comfortable posting those articles here anymore, and decided a separate blog was necessary, so I created Down The Rabbit Hole, intended to document my own experiences on this next stretch of my journey as well as try to offer support to people with BPD and self-aware NPD who want to be well again. A secondary goal is to help spread awareness of mental illness stigma, especially the Cluster B disorders.

It’s all a lot to process but I’ve decided, for now, to keep this blog the same as it’s always been. Almost everyone has been really supportive, and as a victim of abuse myself, I’m there with you. So I’m going to keep posting articles about how to survive narcissistic abuse, my own personal experiences, how to get away from abusers, recognize narcissistic behaviors, research, etc., as well as posting unrelated material as I see fit (and have always done). So you won’t be seeing too many changes. 🙂

Certain articles will (and have been) posted on both blogs, if they’re relevant to both. That’s why you might see double entries on my Twitter feed.

Blogging is not for pussies.

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Don’t be a pussy.

 

Anyone who blogs about a sensitive topic, especially one that focuses on mental health issues (religion and politics would be up there too), is bound to run into haters and detractors at some point. If you blog about a controversial topic, such as narcissism and narcissistic abuse (which is my #1 topic), religion, politics, or the ethical ramifications of breeding pit bulls, by default you make yourself vulnerable to online narcissists, trolls, bullies, and psychopaths. You are going to attract people who do not wish you well. It’s a built-in hazard of the trade.

Even if your blog isn’t particularly controversial or doesn’t focus on a sensitive issue, you are going to have haters and maybe even bullies. OM (Opinionated Man) is a perfect example of this (he insists he has a LOT of haters), and his blog is one of the most popular on WordPress. He doesn’t let the haters get him down, and neither should I and neither should you.

I’ve wasted a lot of time beating myself up for things beyond my control. Over people who do not wish me or my blog well. Way too often I allow other people’s negative opinions of me, my blog, or my articles to get me down and even make me want to change my blog’s focus or remove posts that I thought might have offended them.

You cannot please everyone. It’s not possible. If by some fluke you somehow do please everyone, then you probably have the most boring blog in the universe, one that’s all sweetness and light 24/7, and never approaches anything the slightest bit triggering or controversial.

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Someone is going to be offended.

Even if you blog about something as benign as cake decorating or flower arranging, you are probably going to offend someone. Maybe someone doesn’t like the fact you write recipes using cream cheese icing instead of buttercream, or vice versa. Maybe they are diabetics who take offense to the fact you don’t include sugarless cake decorations in your recipes. They might even assume you are prejudiced against people with diabetes. Maybe someone doesn’t like the color yellow in your floral arrangements because they have bad associations with that color. Maybe they are angry at you because the flowers are dead and they are are morally opposed to killing plant life for ornamental purposes. They could be offended by your fonts or your layout. Maybe they hate your avatar because your picture reminds them of their rude neighbor who lets their dog bark all night and revs their engine every morning at 5 AM.  You have no control over these things.  My point is that no matter what you blog about, someone is going to take offense.

If you can’t stand having bullies and haters, you probably shouldn’t be blogging at all. If you blog about a sensitive or controversial issue, as I do, you are going to attract even more of them than you would if you only blogged about cake decorating or flower arranging or baby koalas.

The Green-Eyed Monster.

Some people are also going to be jealous of you. If your blog becomes successful, expect to have haters. That’s probably why OM has so many haters. His blog is one of the most popular and well-known on the Internet. I’m not tooting my own horn here, but I’ve noticed as my blog has grown, I also have acquired more haters and critics. As a self-identified HSP (highly sensitive person), this realization has been hard for me to accept. I need to grow a thicker skin and just write about what I want and not worry about what the haters think.

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On Political Correctness.

I don’t like political correctness. I don’t like feeling like I have to censor my own thoughts and feelings, because openness and honesty has made my blog what it is. If my words offend someone, they just need to deal with it. If they hate me or my blog, sucks for them.  There are other blogs they can read instead. No one is holding a gun to their head telling them they have to read this blog. I even have an Escape button that will take them to the Huffington Post (it’s not lost on me that some may be offended by THAT). It’s not like I’m the only voice on the Internet that addresses the issues I write the most about. There are hundreds of others.

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I’m a natural pessimist. If I enter a room and everyone is friendly and welcoming except for one person who scowls at me, I’m the type who will fret and ruminate about that one grumpy person rather than feel blessed and grateful that everyone else is happy to see me. Focusing on that one negative person keeps me from enjoying the party.

It’s the same thing with blogging. I have a lot of supporters and friends in the blogging community. There are lots of people who enjoy my blog posts and visit every day. I shouldn’t worry about the few people who are critical of me or my blog, because they don’t matter. They are probably not the sort of people I would want to have as friends anyway.

So, if you blog, don’t be a wuss. Grow a tougher skin and accept the fact you are going to have haters. You don’t have to approve their comments. You don’t have to search Google to see what your detractors may be saying about you. You don’t have to let their vitriol ruin your day. They don’t matter.

Don’t censor yourself. Most people will be able to tell if you are trying to hard to be “politically correct,” and your blog will become boring and insincere and no one will want to read it.   People aren’t stupid and can tell if you’re not being honest or are censoring yourself because of your fear of criticism or offending someone.

Blog from your heart and soul. Be courageous. Write about what you want, no matter how controversial. Don’t be afraid to stir the pot and stand by your heartfelt opinions, even if they are unpopular ones.

Tell the haters to take a hike. You are going to have them. They don’t matter.

Why this blog is becoming successful and how yours can too.

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The beginning: Taking that first, scary leap of faith.

When I started this blog in September, my intention wasn’t to have a “successful” blog. My initial aim (and still my primary aim!) was to heal myself from PTSD, severe anxiety and depression caused by many years of victimization by narcissists. The healing isn’t finished yet, and probably never will be completely.

Deciding to make my personal diary a public spectacle seems rather narcissistic, but my reasoning for doing this was (a) as an alternative to traditional psychotherapy, which I could not afford (and still can’t afford); and (b) my belief that complete honesty on the Internet with complete strangers was the key to my healing and overcoming my many fears, especially my fears of social interaction.

It’s a lot like that first venture into the deep end of a swimming pool. At first you’re scared to death, but soon no one can keep you away from it!

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So far, it’s working. I can honestly say these past five and a half months have proven to be the best therapy I ever had. Yes, putting my heart and soul and vulnerability out there on the web was incredibly scary at first, and I hesitated much about posting some things about my past (and still do sometimes), but I went ahead and did it anyway, then held my breath and waited for the psychopaths, bullies and trolls to descend on this blog like the wicked witch’s flying monkeys descended on Dorothy and her friends in The Wizard of Oz.

That never happened. The few trolls are easily controlled–I just don’t approve their comments. I guess I’ve been lucky: there’s only been about two on this blog so far. I learned not to take what they say personally. I’ve already been the victim of Internet bullying, and feel that with my own blog, I have a lot more control and I know how to handle the bullies and trolls.

My first mentors.

The word Mentor in magazine letters on a notice board

Early in my blogging experience, I was fortunate enough to have three very different people from completely different backgrounds help me obtain more visibility. These people were my first mentors, before I learned the ropes of blogging or how to get it seen.

As a brand new blogger and a person not known for being patient, when my first week passed and I had a measly 12 followers, and was getting practically no likes or comments after slaving away for hours on a post that was painful to write, I expressed my frustration in this post (which is still one of my most popular). I couldn’t lie anymore–although I started this blog as an online journal, dammit, I wanted people to actually read my thoughts! Opinionated Man, known for his kindness to newbies, reblogged that post on his blog HarsH ReaLiTy the next day, and I spent the entire weekend fielding so many comments and new followers that I never had a chance to do my laundry or go grocery shopping!

I consider that my first big win, or maybe my second. My next big win was writing an article about “I, Psychopath,” Ian Walker’s documentary about Sam Vaknin, and that attracted the attention of Sam himself (who admitted he found the article by Googling himself!) For awhile he was sharing every article I wrote about him (and I kept writing more not only because of my interest in him, but I have to admit, to keep my momentum going, since every article I’ve written about him has become wildly popular, even if not shared by Sam himself.) He’s been doing less sharing of my articles and that’s perfectly alright, because now I know how to build my own momentum.

My third big win (but really my first) was Fivehundredpoundpeep’s wonderful blog. Prior to starting this blog, I’d been reading hers religiously and was astonished how much I could relate to this woman, who is an Aspie like myself abused by a truly evil family of narcs (even more so than my own). I added her blog to my blogroll and started commenting on her posts and soon this was a mutually beneficial arrangement where she added my blog to her blogroll (and hers is a pretty popular blog).

All these things have helped my visibility enormously. OM reblogging several later articles has helped too, as well as taking advantage of his regular invitations for bloggers to “pimp their blog” on his website.

Getting over my fear of social media.

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Would I really sell my soul to this devil? Well…yes.

Even with all these fortuitous events, I was still terrified of sharing my articles on social media, Facebook in particular, because of my fear of my FOO (family of origin) and other people from my past I prefer to keep a distance from finding this blog. There’s only so much visibility you can attain through the help of others. To become really successful and for your blog posts to move up to the top of search engines, you can’t rely on other people to do all your disseminating work for you. Eventually you will need to promote your blog yourself, and that doesn’t take into account just writing posts people want to read (which I will get to in a minute).

I didn’t have too much of a problem sharing my posts on Twitter or Stumble Upon, since none of my FOO use those services (except my son, who’s a Twitterholic), but ignoring Facebook is a bad idea for a blogger who wants to grow their visibility and have a successful blog. So I held my nose and first signed up for a LinkedIn account, which seemed less “dangerous” than Facebook. A few weeks later, I finally threw in the proverbial towel and decided to start sharing my articles on Facebook too, even though I use my actual name there instead of my psuedonym, as I do here.

At first nothing much happened. But soon I found I was friending and following people on both Facebook and Twitter who may be interested in a blog like mine. I started paying attention to the “who to follow” section, which always annoyed me before. I followed or friended a number of groups and organizations too that were relevant to the subject matter I write about. By following organizations and groups, you get a lot of new people at once seeing your shares instead of just one person at a time.

Within the past two weeks, my Twitter followers have increased from about 80 to about 130. Every time I sign into Twitter now, I have more followers. That was never the case before.

I’m still wary about Facebook, but I’ve noticed my posts always get the most shares on that site (sometimes in the double digits), so I make sure to “like” relevant groups and organizations, as well as friending a lot of individuals in the narcissistic abuse community.

I recently was able to start running ads on this blog because my traffic was sufficient to do so. I doubt I’ll ever become rich with this blog, but I may earn a bit of pocket money anyway. I sure would love to earn enough to be able to quit my day job, but that’s probably more likely to come from writing a book at some point and selling it on Amazon than it is from this little blog. But that’s okay. Things are happening at the rate they’re supposed to, and not before I’m ready.

Reaping the harvest.

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Due to my becoming far bolder about sharing this blog on social media, it’s been attracting attention from professionals and other people I’m surprised found it. Last week I posted a video of Christian singer-songwriter Danny Gokey’s hit “Hope in Front of Me” and I got a direct message from him on Twitter thanking me for doing that. I got a thank you and several retweets from film director Eric Casaccio, the maker of the upcoming movie, “Narcissist.” I have received a private email from two academic researchers from the University of Georgia who asked me to link to their survey about parental narcissism on this blog. I was more than happy to help them with that project. (The survey is still open and the link to it is in the sidebar; the deadline for that is February 28th). I’ve also been asked to review a new book for abuse survivors and am currently working on that too.

In the past week, my followers have increased by more than 100, and this doesn’t include random readers who are not following my blog at all. As OM says, it’s not about how many followers you have or how many “likes” you get, it’s about how many hits you get. Several of my articles are now on Page One of Google. Other search engines are appearing in my stats now too, including obscure ones and AOL (does anyone actually use AOL anymore?) This is all kind of shocking to me, but the more stuff you have appearing at or near the top of search engines, the more hits you will get. It’s a self-perpetuating mechanism.

All this may sound like bragging, and it probably is. I can’t become too narcissistic about all this as vanity is one of my character flaws. I still have a long way to go. I still have a lot of healing to do, and healing is still–and always will be–the main focus of this blog.

The best reward of all.

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More encouraging and exciting than anything else, though, are when I get emails or comments from abuse survivors who tell me this blog or my story of abuse has helped them. I used to feel so incompetent and useless in the world, so testimonials from people who tell me they feel less hopeless and broken because of something I wrote feels like winning the lottery. Better than winning the lottery. It makes me feel like I have a purpose, that I wasn’t put in this world just to be narcissistic supply to others. I used to actually believe I was put on this earth as an example to others of how not to be.

God, how wrong I was about that. If you feel that way and you are emmeshed with a malignant narcissist or psychopath, you have been trained to believe you are nothing and can offer nothing good or useful to the world. Please believe me, that is wrong. Your abusers are projecting their own self-hatred and worthless feelings onto you.

Tips on writing a blog people want to read.

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Besides taking that leap of faith to finally promote my blog and share articles on social media (and getting a lot of help from others, especially in the beginning), if you want to grow your blog there are several other things you really need to do:

–Include ALL the social media buttons under every article. Even if you don’t use them (but you should), others will. That will help your visibility even if you don’t promote yourself.

–You don’t have to be a Shakespeare or a Poe or have great writing ability. If you know how to string together a few sentences and have halfway decent grammar (grammar and spell check will help), you can still write a blog post people want to read. The key is to make it conversational and personal. Don’t overload the reader with too many facts or pedantic language. And always, ALWAYS be honest. People can tell when you’re lying or leaving out pertinent information. They will finish reading your article feeling unsatisfied and cheated and may never return.

–Use graphics for long posts to break it up. No one wants to read a wall of text, no matter how well written it is. Pictures are easy to find on Google images–just type in a phrase that describes what you’re looking for, or even use pictures you took yourself. Quotes and block quotes work well too at breaking up walls of text, and never be afraid to use humor!

–If your blog focuses on one or two subjects as this one does, it’s okay to add in an occasional article or post about something unrelated. In fact, I think it makes your blog fresher and more interesting. Another benefit of posting unrelated material is that you will attract readers who may not otherwise be reading your blog. I have had a number of foodies and furries reading this blog (and even following it in a few cases) because of articles I wrote about those subjects. It helps to be versatile, but be careful not to lose your original focus.

–If your blog is about a serious or dark subject (as mine is), watch the negativity. People won’t feel helped if all you do is complain or act pessimistic. It’s great to be honest, but people want to feel like you’re giving them some hope for their hopeless situation too. That’s why I include inspirational memes and quotes, happy or cute photographs, cartoons, jokes, and lots of music. (Music has been major in my healing, second only to writing). Sometimes I find that if I post something positive even when I’m feeling like I want to jump out a 16th floor window (it happens more often than you think!), it actually improves my own mood.

–Make sure you post frequently. You don’t have to go crazy like me and post 3-5 new posts a day, but if you publish one post per day, that’s enough to keep readers interested. If you can’t think of anything to write about (and I do have those days), sometimes just a funny cartoon, inspirational meme or pretty photograph with one or two sentences will do. There’s nothing that will kill a blog faster than abandoning it. If you don’t appear to care, your readers will go somewhere else.

–Use as many links as possible in your articles. Doing this will create a pingback or a trackback: Blogs you link to will see the pingback and in return, will most likely follow your blog and recommend it to others.

–Link to your own articles too. Doing this not only adds depth and background to your article, but it also encourages readers to not stop with the article they’re reading–they might click on your links and read your other articles too!

–If you have the time, comment on or at least “like” posts by other bloggers. Follow as many other bloggers as you can, too. Most people are polite so most likely they’ll follow you back.

–Unless you are in a situation where you have potentially dangerous people stalking you on the Web, never, ever, EVER require people to sign in to read your blog. I know if I see a blog that requires me to sign in or use a password to read posts, I’ll bypass that blog, even if it’s about a topic I’m jumping out of my skin to read about.

–Probably most important of all: always reply to your comments! It might seem like a chore, but if you fail to reply to your comments, your readers will think you’re ignoring them and no one likes to be ignored. I also don’t understand why some people don’t allow comments. Interaction is necessary for a blog to be active and dynamic. Replying to comments will keep your readers around and make you seem like you care about them.

There’s a lot of other blogging advice that’s more technical than what I have offered here, and I don’t consider myself any kind of expert on how to run a successful blog. I’m nowhere near OM’s level of viewership and probably never will be, and that’s okay. Besides all the above things I suggested to improve your visibility and readership, I strongly suggest adopting his blog HarsH ReaLiTy as your blogging bible–and in return he just might reblog something you posted!

For more about increasing readership and popularity of your blog, see this article (told from an earlier–and more humorous–POV–I wrote it in early December): https://luckyottershaven.com/2014/12/08/this-blog-is-growing-yours-can-too/

“Constant Supply”: the narcissist’s wife

This is the name of another blog I just found. I haven’t read much on it yet, but it looks intriguing, so I’m adding it to my blogroll too.

http://www.narcissistswife.com/

Three people who deserve my thanks

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Three vastly different people have turned out to be the best things to happen to this blog, and in the spirit of Thanksgiving, they deserve credit and thanks for their positive influence, so here goes.

1. Opinionated Man.

OM’s blog (Harsh Reality), as most of us know, is a godsend to new bloggers hoping to get more visibility and learn the ropes of blogging. He follows new blogs and offers encouragement, advice (that actually works!), and support to newbies and veteran bloggers alike. He also answers all questions posed to him on his blog, no small feat for someone who is so prolific and has so many followers. He also answers them quickly.

In my case (as I’m sure in many others), OM reblogged an early post of mine, which gave my blog a huge boost in visibility and gained me a smallish but loyal following. That in itself was encouraging and made me feel welcome. I also love the fact he regularly offers bloggers the opportunity to link to his blog and showcase their stuff. He has used his huge popularity to help others get more popular. I don’t know too many bloggers who do that, or would have the confidence to do that.

Personally I find it hard to believe he has a lot of haters (he insists he does), because of all the good stuff he does. I also like reading his non-blogging posts and his poetry is good too (even though I’m not much of a poetry fan). I have a feeling OM’s haters are just jealous because he is so popular and has tens of thousands of followers and a level of Internet fame that most other bloggers would give their eyeteeth for.

2. 500 Pound Peep.

500 Pound Peep has an incredible blog over at Blogger (Aspie in a Narcissist Jungle). Like me, she is a survivor of narcissistic abuse and an ACON (adult child of narcissists). Her story is eerily reminiscent of mine. And also like me, she suffers from Aspergers syndrome. Her blog is honest, heartfelt, funny, sometimes irreverent, and always fascinating to read. There are many wonderful blogs written by survivors of narcissists, but hers is one of my favorites and one of the first ones I ever started to read. 500 Pound Peep deserves special thanks because it was she and her blog that inspired me to start my own back in September. For several months prior to starting this blog, I had been reading blogs by others, but hers was the one that made me say to myself, “That’s it. I am doing this.” And that decision is changing my life.

I have trouble posting on her site because since Blogger is connected to Google, it keeps wanting to put my real name under any comments, so I have to choose the “Anonymous” option if I comment. No matter. About a month ago, she found my own blog, and added mine to her blogroll. Since hers is a popular blog, every day my stats show more viewers have been referred to my blog from hers. She has also been supportive and made comments on many of my posts here. I’m very grateful to 500PoundPeep for her support and encouragement, and for her blog which I always find inspirational and eye-opening, even when I don’t comment.

3. Sam Vaknin.

This is a weird one. In what upside down world would I, a victim of narcissists, ever be in a position to thank a malignant narcissist and one who may even be psychopathic? And yet, Sam Vaknin has probably helped the visibility and popularity of this blog more than anyone else. Of course, I undoubtedly helped him too, by writing two articles about him that increased hits to his own site, and most likely got more people to order his books. Of course there’s something in it for him, but that’s alright. It’s even understandable. All bloggers want more hits and visibility and just because he’s a narcissist, doesn’t mean he shouldn’t want more validation too.

I’m utterly gobsmacked by the number of views and hits I got yesterday due to these two articles (541 hits on November 21, becoming my Best Day Ever). Both articles have been shared multiple times on social media, especially Twitter and Facebook, as well as on other sites that saw my article and reposted or linked to it. My stats show 63 Twitter shares (and still rising), and even more Facebook shares over the past three days between both articles. Reddit has recommended my article, it’s appeared on Tumblr, Pinterest,and LinkedIn, it’s now on a few ACON blogrolls. Mr. Vaknin himself commented a couple of times on my posts and even approved of them (for the most part). His presence undoubtedly increased views to my blog because people were curious to see what he had to say. Vaknin has many fans in the narcissistic abuse community, a topic which is pretty huge these days, and evidently a lot of his fans and followers have come to my blog or linked to it. Here is his website.

So, Sam, I do appreciate your input here and attracting your followers along with you to this blog. Sure, maybe I’m just narcissistic supply to you, but you have inadvertently also done me a huge favor, probably a bigger favor than I have done for you. I offer you my sincere thanks for that.

And to the rest of you.

Just because I’ve called out three individuals for special thanks, doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate the support and encouragement the rest of you have offered me and my blog. I value all my followers and readers, and welcome and appreciate all your comments. I also appreciate all the reblogs by several of you.

All these things help this blog get more visibility and will help it make its mark in the blogging world and the community of survivors of narcissistic abuse. And to all my fellow ACONs and survivors, I am as helped by your comments and your blogs as you may be by mine. We are all a community and are here to support and help one another in any way we can.

Namaste!