In my first post, I’ve written about some of the influences that can “help” form a Narcissist.
Narcissism can be formed from the encouragements given from his surroundings, this “encouragement” is often not really as it is… It is more of a tolerance than an actual encouragement. The people around him created that sense of “highness” for him by allowing the behaviours that were unacceptable.
Another source of supply that formed my ex husband’s Narcissism is his MOM.
HE is the only boy born in his family and he’s got three older sisters. There’s 7,8 and 9 years age gap in between him and his sisters. His parents went through 3 or 4 miscarriages before they conceived him. So HE is the golden son in the family. Coming from an Asian culture, having a son is a very “proud” thing… although I don’t understand that concept still… having boys or girls should be equally proud, but somehow a boy is “more equal than others” (like that saying in the Animal Farm).
His dad passed away when he was 16, so as the only son in the family, the responsibility of taking care of the parent falls onto him. They had a shop where they got their income from. He started gambling when he was young (because in the old days his dad used to take him with to some underground casinos and his dad was a usual gambler there) and became like a “professional gambler” and got most of his money from gambling. Luckily that he was on a winning streak and got some capital to start his own small business (also related to gambling…). With the help of that cousin (who I mentioned in Part 1) along with another cousin and a friend, the business took off. He then closed the shop they had which most of the time was run by his mom and his sisters. They then moved into a better area. He was still gambling on the side and was really lucky that he really hit it big. He’s got income coming in from both his business and gambling, he was on a ROLL (as how he used to say).
That was when (I think) HE started developing his sense of highness and importance… His mom in a way allowed his habits and behaviours, which he has got more tolerance from her about his gambling and for letting him did whatever he wanted. He also started drinking at about that time also, and was partying from Mondays to Sundays non-stop (and he is still very “proud” about it.)
He got rich too young too fast and he enjoyed the attentions that people were giving him after he bought a whole lot of nice car, expensive watches, god chains, famous brand clothes. He started gambling more, drinking more, partying more and spending more. He then stopped working and handed the business to his cousins and friend to run. He was living like a “king” (as how HE would describe it) and he likes to brag about how the people, who worked in the casino, called him “boss” whenever he entered.
The Narcissism was growing inside him. He became self absorbed and arrogant. He started treating his cousins and his friend as workers instead of family helping each other out, they must work for him and make sure that money is coming in every month while he sat at home or went out gambling with their hard work cash. He never felt bad about it when he blew the money on gambling, for he said he gave them the opportunity to work for him, they should be grateful and thankful for him.
His mom spoiled him since small. After the dad passed away, she has being taken care of by him. She cooks for him, clear the plates and table after he finishes, pick up his dirty socks, does his laundries, close his cupboard doors in his room after he chose his clothes before he went out, like everything… Their relationship doesn’t really felt like mother and son relationship as how I see it, it felt more like co-dependency. She took care of him more then he took care of her because she needs to depend on him. She treated him like a boy still but in the meantime as the man of the house. She has to be financially dependent on him and therefore she allowed him when he went on gambling even sometimes he had to borrow money from her to go gamble or even disrespects her.
She is very proud of him because he made a lot of money, therefore she makes excuses for his habits of gambling and told me (before we got married) that he doesn’t gamble THAT much and he has got control over gambling and he wouldn’t lose too much “like his other cousin” (who lost his house because of gambling).
Now here is the important part of a Narcissistic supply comes into play, she REINFORCED his behaviors by MAKING EXCUSES for him, and by doing that she gave him that sense of “being right” and “being good”. She encouraged that behavior by justifying it with the tolerance, which boosted his self believe that there is nothing wrong with whatever he was doing. Even with the example of “his other cousin” and the fact that he would borrow money from her or others to go gamble, she could still say to him that:” As long as you got it controlled, is good.” (If you have to borrow money to gamble, that means you are not in control!)
She also would compare other male family members or her friends sons who are about the same age as him and that the others are “useless”, “stupid”, “lazy” or “bad”, and none of them can be as good as him, and she would do this in front of him when other people were around. By talking down on others to make her son better also strengthened the idea that “HE is the GREATESR”, also gave him a big boost to his ego, therefore he looked down on the cousins and the friend who were helping him and he became very bossy and controlling.
Everything has to be in his way. They must not question him, argue with him, or even give him suggestions on how to do things because “his ways are always better”. He put them down to make himself up high even though they were the ones working for his comfortable life and habits. When things went wrong in his business, they would ask him to help out but he would not take the responsibility to sort out things and would tell them to sort out themselves. When things were going smoothly, he would say that’s all because he worked hard for the business for them to work comfortably…??? Like… Really?!
HE would never take the blame when things went wrong but would take the credits of others. HE would never take the responsibility to do things but he wanted to be in charge. That’s a Narcissist would do, for things have to go in his way for his ways are always the best but when shit happens, it’s never his fault.
Well… Things don’t always go smoothly as how he would always want it to be, for the world does not revolve around him.
His “lucky streak” won’t last forever, so things started going down but he carried with HIS ways.
He took a loan on the house and gambled most of that money (even until today, he still hasn’t paid it off yet and that’s being like 6-7 years). From the money he makes from his business, he can afford a comfortable life, but that’s not good enough for him, he wanted more.
The business is not doing bad, but because of his gambling, it’s not enough to cover his “expenses”. So he went to the casinos more and more often. That is because he believes that whenever he goes, he would win, even though years had passed and proved him wrong, he still believes that he will “hit it big” again when he “feels lucky”. He really thinks that if he wants it, he WILL get it.
Again, a Narcissist believes that he can achieve anything and get anything if he wants to. Things must just go in his ways, but I’m very sorry, they don’t!
(To Be Continued…)