What does a narcissist actually feel?
Although we can not know what they genuinely feel, we can form opinions based on how they treat others, the criteria of the disorder and those diagnosed who speak out.
When it comes to most forms of emotion that people feel, it can seem that a narcissist is dead. Yes, they can overtly put an amazing act on. They have learnt from others what certain emotions look like to covertly hide how they truly feel. However, they do not feel the usual emotions or empathy with regards to those around them, at least not in the ways those around them do.
They have an awareness. Even those less aware of who they are or what they are doing. Have an understanding of the fact they feel different from others. They understand and have an awareness of what they do to others. They often lack the compassion for how their behaviour affects others, only how exposure to the narcissist’s behaviour would affect them. Some can have an awareness of how their behaviour affects others. They simply lack the empathy to care.
The narcissist feels great power when they are in control. When they get people to please them, it gives them an ego boost, a feel-good surge of energy and drives them forward to continue. It is a necessity for them to feel this as it’s addictive. It’s how they get that dopamine hit. They feel great power.
Emotions most narcissists do feel are.
Envy often when they create those feelings of jealousy within those around them, so the narcissist can blame others for being jealous to escape their feelings of envy. They feel jealous when they are not the centre of attention. Why they will go all out to ruin special occasions if they’re not the reason for others happiness, they will create the misery for others that they feel within themselves, once they’ve brought everyone else down, the narcissist will question, “what’s your problem.” As the narcissist feels smug within themselves. They feel great envy when they see people with a better house or car, whatever the narcissist perceives as better, often why they’ll do their best to then pull others down or claim others have all the luck.
Bitterness, narcissistic people often believe they have been mistreated. Yet, as they pass the shame over for their feelings of envy, they often claim those around them are bitter to escape the pain the narcissist feels.
Anger and resentment, as they often feel resentful of others because they are envious of others, that bitterness towards others often turns into hatred, and they seek to destroy others.
They feel empty, a sense of nothingness and unworthiness which is why they need to gain attention from others, positive to make themselves feel better, or reactions from people. Hence, the narcissist feels powerful and recognised. With those reactions, they can also shift the blame to escape any feelings of shame within themselves, to a narcissist any wrong they do. Mistakes made, opportunities missed, achievements not made is always someone else’s fault and never their own.
They feel the harshness when people criticise them. They don’t want to be shamed or blamed, a narcissist sells people an illusion, and they try to keep the illusion going. When they show any vulnerability or weakness, they fear pain. Therefore any criticism is someone else’s fault and not theirs.
They feel rage when they respond to criticism, why it’s always your fault in their minds.
They feel very frustrated when they can not make people do exactly as they want, why they tantrum, rage, intimidate or fall silent.
They feel hatred for those who the narcissist believes has turned against them. Those feelings are powerful within themselves.
They do not feel emotions like happiness, joy, sadness, empathy etc., at least not in the same way we do. They have emotional paralysis. Therefore like an addict to a drug, a narcissist is addicted to impressing strangers to get attention and praise to feel happy about themselves, as it’s not who they are. It never lasts. Why when a narcissist does for others, they expect eternal gratitude and praise. They do not feel sympathy for those around them. They lack the compassion to care. If you’re watching and comment on a charity, they’ll feel the attention slip away from themselves. They might make remarks like “Don’t bother, they’ll not get any money” to get a reaction from you.
They get a sense of joy when they destroy something for another that the narcissist was envious of. They don’t feel the guilt, as they believe the other person had stolen from them, so the narcissist seeks revenge and feels prideful and joy once they’ve brought the other person down, they might in a moment feel shame, why they’ll pass the blame, shaming the other person for what the narcissist actually did to that person.
Narcissists don’t learn from their behaviour as they don’t see themselves as the problem. They lack a Conscience. They lack the moral meaning of what is right and what’s wrong. They don’t look to blame themselves for their wrongdoing. Instead, they find a scapegoat to pin the blame on, as a narcissist rarely to never takes responsibility for their behaviour, they never learn from their behaviour, they only learn new ways to shift the blame to get away with their behaviour, so there are no consequences for their actions, often the victim ends up facing the consequences for the narcissist’s actions, due to the narcissist’s mass smear campaigns. ￼
They see and learn from those around them what emotions look like. They can mirror these emotions back to others, to guilt-trip others into doing what the narcissist wants them to do, to gain praise, support or sympathy, to get away with how the narcissist treats others.
As for laughter, they will laugh along with others if it’s something they’ve said to make people laugh. Or if it’s a joke the narcissist has made at someone else’s expense, if the narcissist has humiliated someone, or if they see someone they are envious of fail. They get jealous of people around them who are laughing at others jokes and not the narcissists. They hate seeing others get the praise the narcissist feels entitled to. They take it as criticism towards them and want it for themselves. Have you ever been on a lovely day out, someone else’s birthday party? All is going well. Then out of nowhere, they’ll cause an argument or a scene over nothing because they feel envy that it’s not about them, that they’re not making everybody happy this is simply done to get a reaction and emotions from you. So they themselves can gain their power back. Most will not show rage in the beginning or in front of others as they don’t want the mask to slip.
You can not help those unable or unwilling to help themselves. You can not help those who don’t see themselves as having a problem. You can help yourself. The best thing to do when dealing with a narcissist is simply walk away and make your life great. If you’re after revenge, this is the best as they will never be able to live as you do. And they’ll hate not getting any reactions from you. It’s not always easy; however, it’s possible.
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Elizabeth Shaw is not a Doctor or a therapist. She is a mother of five, a blogger, a survivor of narcissistic abuse, and a life coach, She always recommends you get the support you feel comfortable and happy with. Finding the right support for you. Elizabeth has partnered with BetterHelp (Sponsored.) where you will be matched with a licensed councillor, who specialises in recovery from this kind of abuse.
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