Sunday, 24 March 2013

Twisted Reasonings

This is something I heard today being said about one of the Narcs mentioned in the post about handwriting:

"He says a lot of wrong things but never for the wrong reasons."

I have heard people making similar comments about this man for the last 10 years. There's something in this phrase that doesn't sit right with me. 

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Words: Emotion and Content

    Some Narcissistic people seem to attach a level of emotion to their words that doesn't seem to match the content. They make it sound like the smallest inconvenience is the end of the world, and we should just drop everything we're doing IMMEDIATELY to go and help them. I'm slowly learning to pay attention to what they actually say and not how they say it. 
   A good example of this is a message that has been circulating on Facebook. I'm sure you've probably seen it posted in one of your friends' walls:

Just so everyone on my friends list knows that I completed this and I am done! Facebook has changed their privacy settings once more!! Due to the new "graph app" anyone on facebook (including other countries ) can see your pictures, likes & comments. The next 2 weeks I will be posting this, and please once you have done it please post DONE!!! Those of you who do not keep my information from going...... out to the public, I will have to DELETE YOU! I want to stay PRIVATELY connected with you. I post shots of family that I don't want strangers to have access to! This happens when friends click "like" or "comment"....automatically, their friends would see our posts, too. Unfortunately, we cannot change this setting by ourselves because Faceboook configured it that way. PLEASE place your mouse over my name above (DO NOT CLICK), a window will appear,now move the mouse on "FRIENDS" (also without clicking), then down to "settings", click here and a list will appear. REMOVE the CHECK on "LIFE EVENTS and "COMMENTS & LIKES". By doing this, my activity among my friends and family will no longer become public. Now, copy & paste this on your wall. Once i see this posted on your page, I will do the same.

The first time I saw this a few months ago I totally fell for it and did what it asked, except for posting it on my wall. When I saw it posted again yesterday I thought:"hang on a minute, let's read what this actually says". When I read the post again I realised that if you do what it asks, the only thing that happens is that you won't see said friend's updates on your wall, so really the whole thing is a joke at the expense of the poster, who then will go on wondering why no-one is commenting on their updates. 

Unimportant stuff like this aside, what narcs are doing by attaching that level of emotion (or emergency) to their demands, whether they realise it or not, is shooting themselves in the foot. Because -just like the boy who cried wolf-, in the end, people stop taking them seriously.  

Monday, 18 March 2013

All Caps Handwriting

        As much as the "experts" claim that handwriting analysis is not an exact science (and is there such a thing as an exact science? Apart from mathematics, that is...), it is undeniable that the way people write, what they write about and the language they use tells us quite a bit about the person. 
        I only started looking into it because it struck me that two of the most narcissistic people I knew, though quite different from each other, both write in all caps when sending a card. I don't think this applies to all people who write in all caps, sometimes all caps can have a clear and pretty effect; what I'm talking about here are the ones that make their "get well" cards look like kidnapper's ransom notes. Also like kidnapper's ransom notes, the way they write is bullying. 
Interestingly, both these people also send typed personal letters (I guess it takes too long to write in all caps) which I think is odd. If you're going to do that, why not send an email instead?

Here are some interpretations of why people write in all caps which, at least in the cases of the two people I know, are spot on. (from

"these people do not like to disclose anything about themselves to others. They are uncomfortable talking about their personal lives — at least in interpersonal relationships. They do not want others to know about themselves."
Usually, all-caps handwriting lacks connection between letters, which indicates that the writer does not like to relate to people at a personal level. Also, such writers are quite egotistic. They hold strong opinions and it’s very tough to get  them to see another point of view. They emphasise a lot on their day-to-day lives, rather than spending some time planning their future.

Another article on this I found on
the comments were particularly interesting (a lot of examples of "the lady doth protest too much"). One in particular caught my attention:

I think you got something. So I got a letter from a guy that I barely say anything to, friendly how are you's. He looked like a really well put together kind of person. dressed nice and very polite. I didnt see him for a while and all of a sudden I get a letter from him. He wrote in all caps. I thought that was sorta strange. His words were very carefully chosen. Before I decided to respond, I looked into him and found out that he was in jail and he is being accused of molesting a kid. Maybe you're right. Needless to say, I didn't respond.
"He looked like a really well put together kind of person. dressed nice and very polite.""His words were very carefully chosen." This is also true of the two Ns I know. I think the dressing well and being polite (and charming) is their decoy. In reality, they are bullies, but if they showed their true colours straight away, nobody would go anywhere near them, would they? 

Thursday, 14 March 2013

The Elegance of the Hedgehog

This is the summary of the book on the back cover: "Renée is the concierge of a grand Parisian apartment building, home to members of the great and the good. Over the years she has maintained her carefully constructed persona as someone reliable but totally uncultivated, in keeping, she feels, with society's expectations of what a concierge should be. But beneath this façade lies the real Renée: passionate about culture and the arts, and more knowledgeable in many ways than her employers with their outwardly successful but emotionally void lives. Down in her lodge, apart from weekly visits by her one friend Manuela, Renée lives resigned to her lonely lot with only her cat for company. Meanwhile, several floors up, twelve-year-old Paloma Josse is determined to avoid the pampered and vacuous future laid out for her, and decides to end her life on her thirteenth birthday. But unknown to them both, the sudden death of one of their privileged neighbours will dramatically alter their lives forever." 

Kitty's recent posts on Poking at Personas reminded me of a passage in the book. At the time when I read it I knew nothing about Narcissism yet but the description struck me so much because it described so well not only what happens when you poke behind someone's mask but how the discovery of what's behind the mask made me feel. I even highlighted the whole passage in fluorescent yellow so that I would be able to find it easily. In the story, Paloma is taken to her mother's shrink and she pokes behind his mask:
"At first I was really pleased with myself. I had managed to make him move. But as the day went on I started to feel more and more depressed. Because what happened when he moved was something not very nice, not very decent. So what if I know there are adults who wear masks that are all sweetness and light but who are very hard and ugly underneath, and so what if I know that all you have to do is see right through them for their masks to fall; when it happens with this sort of violence, it hurts. When he slapped the blotter, what it meant was, 'Fine, you see me as I am, no point carrying this useless farce, it's a done deal, you pathetic little bargain, now get the hell out of here, and fast.' Well, that hurt, yes, it hurt."

I think I need to read this book again. I'm sure I'm going to see a lot of stuff that I missed the first time around.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Just How Deep Is This Rabbit Hole?

While I was away these last two weeks I had quite a lot of time to think. That's the beauty of being away: it gives you a different perspective. Next month it will be a year since I started blogging. When I started I "calculated" that I'd be done blogging in about a year. Boy, was I wrong. I had no idea how deep this hole was going to be. Sometimes I feel like I've only just started. Other times I wonder what will be left standing at the end of it. Still, being in the rabbit hole with a compass feels much better than being in the forest not knowing the way.