Oct 3, 2023·edited Oct 3, 2023Liked by Nathalie Martinek PhD

What are some of the most effective treatments for people who have been diagnosed with NPD?

Also, if you work or are in a compulsory locked-in external commitment with a narcissist, what is the best way to be transactional with the narcissist ...and would you or have you ever just repeated what they say to get through the interaction?

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Hi Sheila! Thanks for your questions.

I'm not a clinician so I can't give you any information about effective treatments for NPD beyond what's available from clinical guidelines found online. What I can say is that regardless of treatment, the individual diagnosed with NPD would need to be motivated to improve themselves and no longer hurt others for treatment to be effective. The ones who seek out treatment tend to improve vs the ones who don't or believe you're the problem, not them.

Your second is interesting because many people find themselves in the restrictive situations that you described and are unsure of what 'transactional' looks like that appeases the narcissist.

-You would need to do more listening than talking.

-Don't give your opinion or bright ideas. Ask them what they think instead.

-Affirm that they're well informed about whatever topic you're discussing/working on

-Seem interested in what they're saying but don't probe for more details

-Summarise what they say and check your accuracy. It's a good way to keep someone on track in a conversation, conveys that you're listening and also a way to end a conversation.

-Use the repeat back method once or twice otherwise it will seem obvious that you're not listening and raise suspicion.

-never seek their opinion

-If they give you feedback, just say 'That's an interesting perspective. I need to think about that a bit more.' Don't take any of it personally or seriously.

-If you want to keep interactions short, agree with everything and exit asap.

-consult the 'medium chill' guide here: https://outofthefog.website/what-to-do-2/2015/12/3/medium-chill

I hope these help!

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This is tremendous! Thank you for your insights!

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Oct 3, 2023Liked by Nathalie Martinek PhD

Your posts about the drama triangle and the Sacred Victim in social justice movements definitely provoked me, but have also made me notice how that dynamic is so common.

Given that is the case, what's the healthier way to fight racism and other forms of discrimination, and advocate for social justice? Is there a more constructive/positive take you can provide?

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Thanks Raj for asking an important question about fighting racism. This is not simple to tackle here because there are contextual considerations. Is the discrimination happening in a workplace? Between friends? Between colleagues? Online interactions? Hate email? What social justice issue is being advocated for? Is it your own mission or someone else's mission?

I'm giving you more questions than answers - perhaps a specific example/scenario would be useful to analyse and provide more concrete ideas of how to respond.

What I can say overall is that relationships between humans matter. We all carry baggage of some kind that infiltrate our daily interactions, whether we intend to or not, and can create disconnection and rifts. My hurt doesn't trump your hurt and vice versa. But at some point someone needs to want to try to understand where the other person is coming from and ideally, this would be reciprocated to develop a shared understanding of the issue and negotiate a better way of being with each other.

The trick is to know where to invest your energy in facilitating awareness and change. It's not going to work when someone is invested in being racist because they need to cling to their prejudices for their own sense of control and safety. Better to distance from people like that because they're only going to try to trigger you harder.

Efforts are better invested in those who show willingness to consider other positions. But there's some work at the front end of the relationship to build enough trust where that conversation can occur.

There's more I want to say about this but I'll pause here...do you have a scenario that you based your question on to consider how to respond constructively?

THank you!!!!

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Oct 4, 2023Liked by Nathalie Martinek PhD

This is a very cool idea, Natalie!

Now go back to sleep! 🌙💤

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I'm awake! Send your questions True North!

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As a recovering narcissist I have to make a plea for others in my demographic. Almost, if not all, narcissism is created by childhood abuse, the most damaging of which is emotional abuse. It contains no evidence of sexual or violent attack and the symptoms are always, at least annoying at worst very damaging to those who are in their parental care. Narcissists are in emotional pain almost all the time. They are terrified of being outed as a very bad person, that's why they will talk endlessly and positively and glowingly about themselves in the hope that the listener will perhaps buy some of it. They never ask questions of the patient listener for fear the bright spotlight will be moved away from them. Their lives become crippled with gnawing self disgust. Whatever shining talent many of them may have is wrapped in the filthy rags of narcissism. As Marlon Brando said in 'On the Waterfront', "I could have been somebody". Me too. But believe me, I'm fighting back.

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