In our current society narcissists are venerated, followed and fawned over. They are our national, state and community leaders, CEO's, hedge fund managers, investment firm managers, psychiatrists, psychotherapists, medical doctors, university professors, spiritual teachers, entertainment elite, etc. The list is endless and growing.
Most people are captivated by the burnished image of an individual not their true nature. If someone is highly attractive, bright, educated, very articulate and charming, many are immediately drawn to this person. It is difficult to separate the image that a person presents from what lies behind the smooth talk, gorgeous eyes, confident stance, commanding presence. If you pay close attention and study the narcissistic personality you will learn to recognize that many of those who present themselves in this way are not "good people." By this I don't mean that they are criminals but that they don't give a damn about you, never will and are motivated only by what they can take from you. They are users and exploiters par excellence. They have been learning this craft all of their lives. Most of them have felt superior to everyone else since they were small children. Narcissists are created not born. There is no narcissistic gene.
I say that narcissists are not good people because when we know what they reap in terms of human relationships, the picture is ugly. Yes, they may give money to worthy causes. Some of them are generous and that is good and praise worthy. But when we view their personal lives we see close up the psychological havoc they wreak with their spouses and children and other family members. I read and directly hear countless personal life stories of those who grew up with narcissistic families. What has happened to them for decades is devastating and horrific. They have been emotionally and psychologically abused throughout their childhoods and into adulthood. In a common scenario the parent's public image is impeccable. People look up to this individual as a model--someone they want to emulate. The very opposite is true. Most often what is true about an individual takes place behind closed doors. It occurs in secret. It is kept secret because of the narcissist's threatening and abusive treatment of family members. They have learned to keep quiet because their lives depend on it.God help those who cross a narcissistic mother, father, sibling, in-law. Narcissists control their private fiefdoms. Some spouses and children are brain washed and psychologically fuse with the narcissist. They are in massive denial and remain that way for the rest of their lives. Others recognize who this person truly is---a severe, highly disturbed, venal, cruel narcissistic personality who will continue to abuse them. They disengage themselves from this toxic family member, find ways to escape, save themselves and lead their own lives.
Learn to identify the narcissistic personality quickly so that you cannot be victimized by them, regardless of their public image, personal magnetism, convincing lies, charming overtures to you. To understand the narcissistic personality in-depth, visit my website: thenarcissistinyourlife.com
Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.
Telephone Consultation: United States and International
Book: Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life