Tuesday, December 29, 2009
FALLING DEEPLY IN LOVVVVE WITH……….ONESELF!!!! NARCISSIST?????!
Our experience of what it is like to be human – our very humanness – depends largely on our self-knowledge and on our experience of our selves. In other words: only through being himself and through experiencing his self – can a human being fully appreciate the humanness of others.
But what happens when the self-love goes to a level of narcissism?
Narcissism is a psychological condition which is simply defined as a total obsession with self. This condition is characterized by a lack of empathy for others, sadistic or destructive tendencies towards other people and a compulsion to satisfy personal needs without regard for others.
There are two differences between healthy self-love and pathological narcissism: (a) in the ability to tell reality from fantasy, and (b) in the ability to empathise and, indeed, to fully and maturely love others.
The narcissistic personality is disorganized yet rigid. These people find solace in certainty, what they are familiar with and what they anticipate. This balances their inner instability and volatility.
The narcissist is described as being excessively preoccupied with issues of personal adequacy, power, and prestige. Narcissistic personality disorder is closely linked to self-centeredness.
Infact the narcissist knows little about him and finds what he knows to be unacceptable. The narcissist has precious little experience of his self. Instead, he lives in an invented world, of his own design. He, therefore, possesses no tools to enable him to cope with other human beings, share their emotions, put himself in their place (empathise) and, of course, love them – the most demanding task of inter-relating.
If we keep living in a world of fantasy – how could we notice the very real people around us who ask for our love and who deserve it? The narcissist wants to love. In his rare moments of self-awareness, he feels ego-dystonic (unhappy with his situation and with his relationships with others). This is his predicament: he is sentenced to isolation precisely because his need of other people is so great.
This concept of excessive selfishness has been recognised throughout history. In ancient Greece the concept was understood as hubris. The name "narcissism" is derived the from the Greek mythology of Narcissus.
Narcissus was a handsome Greek youth who rejected the desperate advances of the nymph Echo. As a punishment, he was doomed to fall in love with his own reflection in a pool of water. Unable to consummate his love, Narcissus pined away and changed into a flower that bears his name, the narcissus.
I don't think any actor feels comfortable watching themselves in movies. You must be very narcissistic. The problem with your own opinion of yourself is that contrary to the normal spectators, when you watch a film you are in, you only watch yourself.
Omar Sharif, Egyptian actor
Narcissistic rage is a reaction to narcissistic injury (when the narcissist feels that he/she is degraded by another person, typically in the form of criticism). When the narcissist's grandiose sense of self-worth is perceivably being attacked by another person, the narcissist's natural reaction is to rage and pull-down the self-worth of others (to make the narcissist feel superior to others). It is an attempt by the narcissist to soothe their internal pain and hostility, while at the same time rebuilding their self worth.
Narcissistic rage should not be confused with anger (although the two are similar), and is not necessarily caused by a situation that would typically provoke anger in an individual.Narcissistic rage can be explosive or passive aggressive.
Narcissistic parents demand certain behavior from their children because they see the children as extensions of themselves, and need the children to represent them in the world in ways that meet the parents’ emotional needs.(For example, a narcissistic father who was a lawyer demanded that his son, who had always been treated as the "favorite" in the family, enter the legal profession as well. When the son chose another career, the father rejected and disparaged him.)
These traits will lead overly narcissistic parents to be very intrusive in some ways, and entirely neglectful in others. The children are punished if they do not respond adequately to the parents’ needs. This punishment may take a variety of forms, including physical abuse, angry outbursts, blame, attempts to instill guilt, emotional neglect, and criticism. Whatever form it takes, the purpose of the punishment is to enforce compliance with the parents' narcissistic needs.
NARCISSICTIC PERSONALITY DISORDER
Narcissistic personality disorder is a condition characterized by an inflated sense of self-importance, need for admiration, extreme self-involvement, and lack of empathy for others. Individuals with this disorder are usually arrogantly self-assured and confident. They expect to be noticed as superior. Many highly successful individuals might be considered narcissistic. However, this disorder is only diagnosed when these behaviours become persistent and very disabling or distressing.
• An oversensitive temperament at birth
• Overindulgence and overvaluation by parents
• Valued by parents as a means to regulate their own self-esteem
• Excessive admiration that is never balanced with realistic feedback
• Unpredictable or unreliable caregiving from parents
• Severe emotional abuse in childhood
• Being praised for perceived exceptional looks or talents by adults
• Excessive praise for good behaviors or excessive criticism for poor behaviors in childhood
Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Relationships
The attitude of a narcissist towards others is one of superior contempt. Narcissism also makes people envy the accomplishments of others; the success of others is perceived as stealing the narcissist's "rightful" rewards or possessions.
People with narcissistic personality disorder demand that others provide them with comfort, gifts, and other desires, but refuse to acknowledge any indebtedness. Rather than offer thanks, the narcissist will mock and degrade both gift and giver.
This contempt for others is also expressed towards intimate partners and children. When narcissists feel family members are not meeting their needs, they may resort to emotional, physical, or sexual abuse. Sexual abuse of children is also a danger with severe narcissist personality disorder, as the narcissist sees his children as extensions of his self with no real individual identity or rights.
Narcissism treatment must overcome a number of challenges. People with narcissistic personality disorder often resist treatment; their self-concept refuses to accept that their narcissism is abnormal, and they consider mental treatment "beneath them," or "demeaning" and they adopt adversarial attitudes towards mental professionals.
Antidepressants may be used to treat anxiety and depression in the narcissist, but as with many personality disorders, the patient must be monitored carefully for signs of non compliance or substance abuse.
Psychotherapy, both individually and in group settings, can help the patient with narcissistic personality disorder identify and change his or her symptoms. The goal of treatment is to help the narcissist become more sensitive to others' rights and emotions. Treatment outcomes are dependent on the severity of the disorder — the less willing the narcissist is to view others with any degree of empathy, the more likely treatment will fail.
Narcissists are difficult ones to be dealt with and if you're near them, you're the mirror if you give them the slightest attention to reflect back an image they have just created of themselves. Don't reflect back the image they have created. You can do this by giving them little attention and slipping away from their attention field...