The Manipulative Tactics of Narcissists: How They Turn Victims into Villains.
Narcissists employ various manipulative tactics to avoid responsibility and maintain their desired image. They excel at deflecting blame and manipulating others into sympathising with them, even when they are at fault. This often leads to victims, who are speaking the truth, being disbelieved while the narcissist portrays themselves as the victim.
Narcissists utilise the P.L.A.Y acronym to achieve this manipulation: they provoke a reaction, label the victim as crazy or insecure, accuse them of being hurtful, and yield responsibility to play the victim role.
Here are some common tactics used by narcissists:
- Gaslighting: Manipulating the victim’s perception of reality, causing them to doubt their own sanity and question the validity of their experiences.
- Excusing, justifying, and rationalising: Coming up with reasons or explanations to justify their harmful behavior or deflect blame onto the victim.
- Projection: Accusing the victim of possessing traits or behaviours that the narcissist actually possesses.
- Blame shifting: Holding the victim responsible for the narcissist’s actions or mistakes, avoiding any accountability for their behaviour.
- Smearing the victim’s name: Spreading false or exaggerated information about the victim to damage their reputation and credibility.
- Character assassination: Provoking the victim to react and then using this reaction as evidence of the victim’s alleged “hurtful” behaviour. The narcissist aims to distance themselves from any responsibility and portrays themselves as the victim.
- Covert aggression: Utilizing belittlement, humiliation, criticism, and manipulation to cause the victim to become anxious, stressed, and depressed. The narcissist then uses these emotional responses as evidence of the victim’s supposed inadequacies and apparent craziness while presenting themselves as innocent.
- Triangulation: Creating conflict or competition between the victim and another person close to them in order to manipulate the victim’s emotions and control the narrative.
- Selective amnesia: Denying any knowledge or memory of events or conversations that may expose the narcissist’s manipulative behaviour or contradict the victim’s claims.
In conclusion, narcissists employ a range of manipulative tactics to portray victims as villains. By applying strategies like gaslighting, blame-shifting, character assassination, and more, narcissists safeguard their image while manipulating and discrediting those who challenge them. It is crucial to recognise these tactics and seek support when dealing with the harmful effects of narcissistic manipulation.
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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.