On Feb. 17, 2008 I posted this blog about being "Devalued and Thrown on the Junk Heap". In the comments on the 18th I described the cat and mouse game of the narcissist. This was because there was a discussion on my assertion that what the narcissist does to you isn't personal. I used the cat and mouse as a way to describe the perspective of the predator toward its prey.
I mention the dates because I wanted it to be clear that I wrote about this before the author of this article did. His article came out on the 21st of Feb. His article is titled "Psychopaths' Cat and Mouse Game". What I really liked about the author's use of this analogy is that he took it to the same place I did...that it ain't personal:
When the psychopath takes you for a ride—that is, when he is victimizing people—it’s really not personal: You’re simply not enough of a person for it to be personal. In the psychopath’s eyes, you are an expedient, nothing more. When he crosses your path, the psychopath is assessing your expediency. He is asking himself, “Is there something this impending-sucker has for me? Is there something I can take from this fool that I want? Something I can take that will make me feel good?”
I realize this article is talking specifically about psychopaths, nevertheless, it applies to malignant narcissists as well. This is because both psychopaths and malignant narcissists are predatory. Since most psychopaths do not become serial killers the fact is most of their torment of their victims is psychological. Just like narcissists. Dr. Hare has established the fact that all psychopaths have a narcissistic personality pattern. Therefore, when we talk about psychopaths we can apply much of the discussion to malignant narcissists.
It really can't be over-emphasized that it isn't personal. Again, this is an important thing to grasp because it is essential for you to really know and feel how objectified you are in the narcissist's eyes. You are an object. Not a person.
Part of their manipulation of us is how they will pretend there is an emotional bond between you and them. You believe that they must love you in "their way". So you hang in there. You swallow more lies. You stick around because you live in vain hope of change. You feel guilty for breaking contact because you believe them when they say they love you. Instead of seeing how they use the word 'love' to keep you stuck, you choose to believe they care in some way because you care about them (being the decent person you are). And because you stay, they continue to have the power to torment you. Yes, it feels personal as they adjust their torments to your reactions. You mustn't be fooled by the customization of their torture of you. It is just how they maximize the amount of amusement they gain at your expense. It is all about their pleasure, their gain, their lusts. It's not about you.
If you have determined that you are in a relationship with a narcissist or psychopath you need to expunge the word love from your expectations of them or your beliefs about their feelings toward you, or anyone. They do not know what love is. They can say the word. That is all it is to them -- a word. They know the power that little word has over you, but they do not experience love on an emotional level. They only use the word because they know it has emotional meaning to you. If you can really absorb the reality that they don't love you, that they never loved you, it will greatly facilitate your ability to walk away. And not only walk away, but to disentangle your own emotions from them. Residual worry on your part that you've 'hurt' them in some way emotionally by leaving will vanish because you will know down to your bone marrow that they were never connected to you emotionally by bonds of love. Or even hate. You were no more a person than your Lazy Boy lounge chair in the living room. When you can really know that, you'll be free both body and soul.
Remember my maxim: when words contradict actions you must believe the actions over the words or you'll end up being someone's meal. Don't believe protestations of love when the actions consistently contradict how love is truly demonstrated. Add to that this truth as it applies to torments dished out by narcissists: it ain't personal. You are only a means to an end to them.
For the full article mentioned above, read here.