Narcissists love to be the center of attention and within this particular group of people there can only be one!! narcissist per social event or things go badly…quickly.
If you’ve never seen two narcissists duel: it’s a frightening, somewhat dizzying experience that nobody ever wins.
Narcissists whip up a froth of information about themselves that’s flattering, weaving in half-truths or sometimes flat-out lies to make their story sound better.
There is even a psychological term for this addiction to being the center of attention: it’s called “narcissistic supply”. They have to have their supply, or else.
Want to keep an eye out for a narcissist at your next social gathering? Look for these signs:
While we’ve all been taught from a young age that interrupting is rude, narcissists simply don’t care. If the current topic or conversation doesn’t involve them they’ll simply interrupt and get one going that is all about them. With narcissists it is constantly “me, me, me”. If someone stops them from redirecting the conversation, they just jump into monopolize it again. Narcissists are all about monopolization of attention.
Playing the victim
Narcissists will often try to garner pity they don’t deserve…and often directly at the expense of another. While narcissists are an emotionally neutral group, they well understand the power of empathy and use emotionally manipulative tactics to try to ensure they are seen as the worthy recipient of human empathy…not the person who actually deserves it.
Also known as “shock and awe”, narcissists employ this tactic to bully you. You’re not used to such loud outbursts from this person in your life, and that they are displaying one gets your attention. And with that they now have control over you. Especially as rational people aren’t generally used to such displays and become easily confused by them. And this is where the narcissist moves back into the spotlight.
The blame game
Narcissists will switch particularly sensitive topics constantly to put you in a defensive position, then interrogate so that they can find something, real or perceived, for which they can blame you. Then when you begin to get defensive they vanish, leaving you with the blame for the situation and for letting it get “out of hand” and being “dramatic”.
It took me awhile to get my head on straight about this one but basically it’s how narcissists use our own good will and human spirit against us. Before we understand that they are narcissists we are kind and loving to them and treat them well. There is a general trust there. Then when the trust is violated, narcissists do a quick twist of the conversation and next thing you know you’re being accused of what they actually perpetuated. The honest person becomes a liar; the faithful woman a jezebel and so on and so forth. All to keep them at the center of attention.