Every individual is born with his/her unique but flexible personality (e.g. introverts or extroverts, confidence level, seriousness or playful, shy or outgoing) that can be influenced from different factors. The way we think, how we behave, how we react to situations, and how we manage our emotions, are all learnt and developed as we grow older. Our personality defines who we really are, our behaviours are the reflections of our personality. Each behaviour is closely linked to our thoughts, our thoughts are often linked to what we’ve learnt through cultural background, environments, the people we interact with, and then linked to how we react to certain things.
Narcissism is a type of personality disorder which can be formed since childhood. A personality disorder can be formed when our behaviour weighs more than our personality (e.g. when a person keeps on telling himself that he is good at anything – behaviour; he becomes more and more self confident – personality changes.)
A Narcissist most likely to grow up surrounded by certain objects or people, that in a way “feeds” him his needs for admiration, boost of self confidence, appraisals. What can often happen is that these people, normally his friends and family, feed him more than he should get, which further on boost his ego too much and then help forming Narcissism. Family members play a very important role in everyone’s lives, they are the ones who can influence our personality and behaviours.
A Narcissist can also be formed when a person is lack of self confidence. He could be growing up with little attentions paid onto the things he did. This type of Narcissist can then become self hypnotic (more like a self therapy), but then what he would do is believe in too much of himself and start to really thinking that he is the best of everything. He would then start to brag about what he has done to get some attentions from people. He could even start to over exaggerate his achievements to get more attention and sometimes lie. Once he could get the admiration that he wanted, the behaviour becomes more intense.
Therefore, personality starts to change.
It took me 10 years to realize that my ex-husband is a Narcissist.
At the beginning when he was talking about his past achievements: he said he used to be the top car sound system installer when he was 16 and had won a competition, which he came 2nd, and people were willing to offer him a job that time already while he was still in high school but he refused because he said too good and he just wanted to proof who was the best. Even until today he would still brag about it. He would also say that if it wasn’t because the guy (who came first) knew the people who sponsored the event and was promoting their products, he would have came first. I didn’t mind that much at first, but then he would start bragging about almost anything and always direct the attention back to him, that was when I started to wonder “what is wrong with this guy?” (and this sound system story would always come out whenever we have family gatherings or parties, especially when there’s new friends around.)
He likes to compare almost anything with anyone to see who’s things are better and who’s done a better job, who earns more, who drives better car, and who’s got a better wife even… and while he does that he would often want someone to be the judge and tell him that “yes, yes, you are the man!” or “yes, yes, you win!”
He always had his cousin followed him around where ever we went… He also has a friend who had being with him since they were 15 (both of them stayed with him and they really sucked up to him, so they could stay there for free and forever…). Every thing that he did, they were there to either to be compared with or to be there to back him up. Even after we got married, they were still staying there with us (his cousin only moved out after he got married, but my ex didn’t want them to move out at first because then he would lose his supply). His childhood friend was like his side kick when they go out to clubs (he still stays with him…). They would compare each others’ cars, watches, incomes, clothes and of course, their wives, which I was included all the time and being criticized in their man’s talk, and my ex would also do that while I was right there in front of them. They would also gang up and join forces to criticize me. HE would start saying something then his friend would start talking about how great his wife is, and then HE would tell me that I should change this and that in order to become like his friend’s wife so I wouldn’t become an embarrassment to him because he has to have the best to suit the best – him.
Both of them were with him since he was young. They were his Narcissistic supplies. His cousin was there mainly to be talked down and make fun of by him. Narcissist does that, he talks low down about someone to make himself feel high and to make him feel better about himself. His friend was there more to be used like a mirror, because it makes him feel that they’re on the same level. This is where the contradiction of a Narcissist comes in, he needs someone “low” who he can “upper” himself and then he also needs someone “high” who he can be on the same level with to reflect to others that he hangs out with those in the “high society”, but in the meantime he would still talk down to that person to make himself “higher”… Another thing that I find it weird is also that, if HE thinks that he is the BEST, why would he needs to compare (this is because HE knows he’s not the best, that’s why).
Yeah… It is weird…
Another source of his Narcissistic supply is his mother…
(To be continued…)