Manipulating People 101

Yesterday, Clarissa wrote a great post about narcissists which I could not get out of my mind, and instead of posting a long comment, I am going to extend Clarissa’s list here according to my own (very bad) experience with such a person — how to know that you deal with an extreme narcissist and, consequently, that you should get away from that person immediately (indeed, there is no other way):

  • If you don’t oblige his/her wishes, he/she might threaten to kill himself, or to drive into a tree with other people in the car. The narcissist will swear, insult you, call you selfish, and attack you in absolutely any way possible. If she/he knows you well, they will find the right angle eventually, so get away before that happens.

  • Typical conversation: Narcissist: “It amuses me how inefficient you are with your work.” — Me: “Why are you offending me?” — “I did not offend you.” — “Yes you did.” — “Listen to me carefully:  I DID NOT OFFEND YOU!” I am ashamed to say that this line has been used on me several times before I figured out how absurd it is.

  • Claims to be admired deeply by other people. Claims to be the best person, father, mother, friend, most mature individual on the planet and able to have extremely deep relationships.

  • Claims to suffer extremely while seeming cheerful

  • If being critiziced in any way with regards to a purely technical/work related question, he/she will  see that as a personal attack and react accordingly, along the lines of: “The paragraph you wrote here is hard to understand” — “Why do you hate me so much?”

  • Makes such a huge drama each time his/her wishes are not met that one starts be be afraid to have an opinion or a wish on one’s own.

  • Attacks other people mercilessly, and is totally surprised if they are hurt or defend themselves.

  • Loves to give unsolicited personal advice. This is sign of disrespect for people. Gives advice that serve his/her needs.

Perhaps, as a general rule of thumb, that I try to remember myself: Whenever a person calls me selfish for not meeting their wishes… I promise myself to be  super-careful.

Calling someone selfish is already a breach of boundaries and a sign of deep disrespect for that person. It says: “You find your totally unimportant wish more important than my wish? How can you?”

But how can I ever claim another person’s wish is, absolutely speaking, unimportant? It might be extremely important to them. “You are selfish” just means “I think you should do what I want.” It means: “I do not care about your feelings.” It means: “You are not my friend, but my servant.”

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4 Responses to Manipulating People 101

  1. Pingback: Sunday Link Encyclopedia and Self-Promotion « Clarissa's Blog

  2. Sister says:

    This describes someone I know with eerie precision. What’s unfortunate is that those of us dealing with narcissists tend to think that the fault lies with us and not them.

    • zinemin says:

      Yes, exactly. The narcissists are experts in manipulating us into thinking that everything is our fault. This is so easy for them, they have practiced this all their lives.

  3. Pingback: Manipulating people 102 | zinemin's random thoughts

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