It is said that there is a narcissism epidemic currently happening. The news is filled with people who harm others on a daily basis. They take advantage of others for reasons of greed, manipulation, and advancement. They are object-oriented, and they seem to treat people in the same way that they would treat an ant: cold and indifferent.
Many of my listeners are subjected to one or more narcissists on a daily basis. They write to me with many different questions revolving around dealing with the narcissist in their life. If a person is intuitive, introspective and analytical, they can become adept at dealing with narcissists in any walk of life. They can become a sort of expert in interacting with narcissists, psychopaths, and sociopaths so that they avoid ultimate harm.
A person who experiences insult and injury should advance into self-protective modes when a narcissist or sociopath is around. We are wired to scan our environment for dangers, and then to react in appropriate ways to reduce the amount of danger to ourselves. The problem is that many of us have broken sensors. We have had so much trauma and poor experiences in our lives that we stop looking for positive people and positive experiences.
We fall into a trap where we begin to settle for people who are lower on the food chain. We marry beneath us instead of striving to find a partner who is healthy, supportive, and uplifting. We don't demand more of our friends. As a society, we have become wimpy in challenging others who do not meet our expectations that we have set for ourselves. We are told to 'be nice', and thus we be nice to all the wrong people.
While we are all on high-alert for dangers, those who have been exposed on a regular basis to narcissists and psychopaths become desensitized in their ability to detect healthy and unhealthy people. If we were raised by self-absorbed parents, we don't think twice about dating a self-absorbed mate.
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- Mrs N E Hankin