I'm not one for human relationship statements on facebook and social media but recently I just find it intensely saddening that i've recently seen a lot of posts about (non professional and unqualified) people ready to incorrectly and unfairly "burn" often perfectly normal and reasonable folk, in the eyes of others by actually unfoundedly calling them abusive or narcissists, from some sometimes broad strokes self help psychology articles.
Instantly some who have read articles on this kind of psychology are saying "aha its the classic narcissist attacking and devaluing argument", but thats not my intention for writing this, just read till the end, please, and hear me out.
There is I feel a real danger of falsely and unfairly branding innocents based on these pschology articles.
As one who has unfortunately had the later unpleasant position of involvement with somebody, years back, who was once diagnosed by a medical professional, as having one of these conditions, and a benzodiazapine problem, my experience was very telling and perhaps helpful to somebody.
This very week I decided to look in so to speak, and contact this person intending a friendly well wishing conversation and I was met with a VERY hostile, cold and short reply.
So deciding there was nothing to be positively exchanged, I decided to just say goodbye nicely and be done.
Incidentally the end of us originally was HER doing not mine.
Back then although I could see the manipulation plays a mile off I still cared for her and I chose to stay, believing she might somehow realise manipulation was not necessary for me to stay.
But it continued and when I would not allow myself to be manipulated, she said it was over, and not even in person.
Now consumers of these psychology articles would say "yes according to the article thats textbook, and just what happens" but although what happened may appear to fill the description in the article, to my ex's defence, the article readers arent the professional who diagnosed her. It was far from simple.
Now I am aware it is a known fact that genuine narcissists have been known to use the argument of belittling or diminishing the other's person's point of view by arguing the pedigree or professional status of the accusing opinion.
So there are both sides to that point. Those being narcississtic and those trying to legitimatly label a narcissist and get out.
One angle less considered is that the the person referencing the psychology article to brand the other as a narcississt or abusive, may or may not themselves be a narcissist, but just simply be in denial of a discussion point(that could have value) raised by the other person.
And its been said denial is the most predictable of all human responses.
If somebody points to something I dont like, because it really has some truth I most likely will be defensive. Defensive though, still entertains discussion and conceding to being wrong.
But I think you'd agree denial is only fair and valid in the face of an untruth or malicious action, validated by not just a few in your favour, but a large unbiased collective in agreement - true objectivity.
This is not to be confused with another famous narcissist tactic of getting a few people to agree with the narcissist's point of view in order to devalue and belittle his opponent. In fact just the opposite.
The one who cares will invite true objectivity out of care and an interest in fairness to both not just arguing THEIR point like the narcissist.
Like in criminal proceedings I submit the REAL question is that of malice.
Whoever demonstrates malice I think is REASONABLY to be doubted. After all malice is opposite to truth, love and fairness. Malice is selfish.
Besides pure malice. Where pride is potentially injured hurt can set in and become malice, and malice can taint reason. Then such broad stroke psychology articles can become ammunition for self justification, and also a reaction from injured pride and in so doing incorrectly brand a good intention.
I implore you, if you have a relational difficulty, take time and work through it, albeit tough or painful. Dialog exhaustively and discern before as a layman branding and unfoundedly destroying the other person in others' eyes with misguided internet pschology claims.
Quoted below from such an article are two points, and I want to comment briefly on those points in closing.
The article advocates a total severance policy from a supposed abuser or narcissist.
If the person you severed is actually innocent and you incorrectly judged them,(as i'm sure many are beginning to do), they recommend surrounding yourself with your family support system.
But then, be aware, you only have YOUR folk telling you what you want to hear. That is not often a very broad truly objective group.
Thats not true and fair objectivity and you have effectively just become what you mislabled. You may have emotionally executed the innocent and in doing so become twice the killer.
Finally the article has a clumsy disclaimer. Its really a poor excuse to absolve the authors of readers possibly carelessly labelling and so burning an innocent without fair due diligence and effort to proper loving conflict resolution. Perhaps maybe even using their article as an excuse for ending a relationship masking an abject relational laziness. Also those previously having been abused, will be as a future defense, be most likely to misconstrue a true persevering conflict resolution, and more likely, sadly, misjudge.
So here are three verses and thereafter the section from the article.
I take from Scripture to guide a rational pure thought process for future relational considerations.
With no preaching in mind but universal benefit....
"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked"
Feelings can mislead us.
I try to look at a constancy of action, particularly love.
First, 1 Corinthians 13 speaks clearly of the attributes of love:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Substitute the others name for the word Love and then evaluate fairly in context...
Second, "Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind."
By the renewing of your mind.—“The mind” (i.e., the mental faculties, reason, or understanding) is in itself neutral. When informed by an evil principle, it becomes an instrument of evil; when informed by the Spirit, it is an instrument of good. It performs the process of discrimination between good and evil, and so supplies the data to conscience.
Finally then acting in love and good conscience consider logically:
"Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy" - Proverbs 27:6
It can be frustrating when someone changes the subject in the middle of a conversation, but when a partner does this to avoid taking responsibility for their actions, diversion can be downright dangerous.[ARTICLE]
Narcissists use this tactic to derail conversations that may lead to an unpleasant result.[ARTICLE]
(So do denialists)
If you decide to end a relationship with an extreme narcissist, Glass recommends making a clean break if possible.
“It’s the exact opposite of how they sell the lottery,” he says. “The only way to win is not to play.”[ARTICLE]
Use your support system and don’t allow the conversation to continue. Block the narcissist’s number and email address and cut off any communication outlets. While this might seem harsh, it’s the only way to truly keep them out of your life.
We should note that the suggestions in this article don’t apply to every situation, and severely abusive relationships often need to be handled differently to ensure your safety.
I challenge you, do you truly dialog and listen? Or do you hear what you want to and execute innocents? Its a lot easier to hear what you want to....