Infant Attachment Trauma caused by the Birth Mother or by the infant being given away to be raised by someone other than the Birth Mother (Grandparents or adopted out) can result in a Cluster-B Disordered Individual such as a Narcissist.
Childhood Trauma (later form of Attachment Trauma) caused by one or both parents can result in a Codependent Individual. One or more of the parents could be Cluster-B Disordered.
I am of the opinion that said Individuals (Narcissist or Codependent) are created (not born – ie not genetic) because of variations of Attachment Trauma inflicted on them via Abysmal Parenting.
John Bradshaw’s work raised the awareness of the concept of the Injured Inner Child. I have spoken to people with high levels of Narcissistic Traits, about their childhood. It was like I was talking to a different individual. even their vocal characteristic changed. I have crossed paths with Narcissists and have paid the price. Yet I still feel sorry for them. In my opinion it is not their fault that they are the way they are. The same for folks with Codependent Traits.
Keeping this site going I have again come full circle back to Attachment Trauma. I was reminded of that today while researching the website of a San Francisco Bay area Complex PTSD Therapist. I have to get in touch with him, to see if I can share some of his material on this site.
Taking my theory further, a relationship between a Narcissist and a Codependent could result in further Trauma. The Codependent could develop PTSD (or Complex PTSD if the relationship had been a long term one). The Narcissist could also suffer Trauma in the form of Narcissist Injury (Abandonment Trauma), from the loss of their valued Source of Narcissistic Supply. In the extreme, the Narcissist could attempt Suicide because of that Trauma and injury (I have witnessed this with Somatic Narcissists). Both types of individuals were created due to Trauma and when combined into a relationship both end up creating more Trauma. The Codependent could also develop Trauma Bonding if the relationship becomes abusive, and cannot leave.
Narcissists are attracted to Codependents.
Codependents are attracted to Narcissists.
Maybe the Injured Inner Child (see Alice Miller’s book titled : “The Drama of The Gifted Child“ and John Bradshaw’s books and videos about the Inner Child) of each type of individual can somehow pickup on the injured Inner Child in the other type of individual. The Injured Inner Child could be the source of the attraction between Codependents and Narcissists.
The common theme in the above is Trauma. The destructive Domino cascade is initiated by Extremely Poor to non-existent Parenting. Another area where our Educational Systems have failed Society. How many of you reading this, have had courses which detailed Great Parenting?
The most important role that a Human can have is to become a Great Parent. Yet we get zero formal training. I have had to take many courses in say Accounting and Statistics which I will “never” use. I have had zero courses detailing how to be a Great Parent. Does this make sense to you???
A first person account of going through Abuse Recovery. It will not be easy. Nor will it be any fun.
One key point from this video is that by hanging in there, you can reach the light at the end of that dark tunnel.
I believe that a lot of people need to view this video, to help them to understand the insanity which they had lived through. It’s also important to hear that you were not the only one who was targeted, used and abused by a Narcissist, Sociopath or Psychopath. It helps to listen to the Red Flags mentioned, which were found in the presenter’s Toxic Relationship
Videos like this one, take guts to make public. IMHO, videos like this one are Extremely Important.
Video is courtesy of the Angel Speaks YouTube channel
Cluster-B Disordered Individuals mess up many loving and caring people. This IMHO is the fault of the Educational Systems. Just as there are Sex Education classes, there should also be training about the Red Flags displayed by Cluster-B Disordered Individuals. Have videos such as this one, shown to every High School, College and University graduating group.
A friend ended up in a Hospital for months after the Malignant Narcissist that she had married, went into a rage. No one ever taught her about the Red Flags to look for. She married and was isolated from friends and family, by moving to another country. Becoming isolated and totally dependent on a Cluster-B Disordered individual opens the door to major physical abuse. All my friend had to talk to were the Flying Monkeys, that is the Malignant Narc’s family. She learned about the Red Flags, after major damage was done.
There are many Red Flags given off by Narcissists. Love Bombing for one. Mirroring is a big one, which I tend to consistently harp on about.
There are a couple of key things which the Narcissist will not hide from you. One is in my opinion the “most important Red Flag“. Ask the potential Narcissist about their childhood. Were they brought up by their Birth Mother? If they were still an infant and they were adopted out or given to other family members (say Grand Parents) to be brought up, that is the “most important & biggest Red Flag“.
To better confirm that Red Flag, ask questions about the person’s Birth Mother? If there is any animosity or even outright hatred shown towards their Birth Mother, that is “yet another major Red Flag” which also confirms your perception of the biggest Red Flag.
It is my opinion that Narcissists are created due to Abandonment Trauma(s) suffered while still an infant, before the left hemisphere of the brain is developed. The Trauma(s) change how the Brain Develops – ie it’s a Hardware-Wiring issue and so Narcissists can not be changed via a treatment protocol. MRI Brain Scans seem to confirm “my opinion”.
Joseph Burgo, in a radio interview, alluded to the coincidence that many diagnosed Narcissists had been abandoned in their early childhood. They were adopted out. They were transferred to other family members (Grandparents) to be cared for.
All the Narcissists who I got to know, had issues with their Mother. Yes the issues varied between a coldness to outright disdain.
Sam Vaknin wrote something confirming this in a review of the book titled “The Abandoned Child Within: On Losing and Regaining Self-Worth “
Sam Vaknin wrote:
“Underneath this colourful maelstrom lies an hypothesis: pathological narcissism is the direct outcome of early childhood abuse and trauma, mainly in the form of abandonment or neglect. Narcissism, in other words, is a defense against hurt and emotional injury.”.
A female Somatic Narc had a pronounced dislike of her Mother. In stark contrast, she and her Dad were fine. Events in the past when one is an infant can have profound affects which can last a lifetime.
A Cerebral Narc would not speak to their Mother when she came in tears because her own Mother had just passed away. The Cerebral Narc’s Grandmother dies and the Narc could not be bothered to come and talk and try to comfort their own Mother. . Would a non Cluster-B Disordered Individual, who has Empathy for the suffering of others behave that way?.
Being brought up by other family members like Grand Parents can cause Abandonment Trauma. To the Grand Parents it’s a burden to “have to” feed, cloth and bring up their daughter’s infant child. They already brought up their own kids.
The distrust of the Birth Mother for being abandoned and sent off to live with strangers (yes they are Grand Parents and an adult understands that but an infant sees themselves being dumped off to some strangers) by the Narc can be life long.
Different people love very differently and sadly some not at all. That description includes Grand Parents. The infant had already lost life’s lottery by being born to a Mother who abandoned them and sent them away to live in another place. Good chance that the Grand Parents were not the kindest and most loving of individuals. So the infant losses again and possibly pays for such loss by developing a Personality Disorder which could prevent them from being able to establish and enjoy “Intimate and Loving” relationships.
Alice Miller has written a post on her site which ties a number of things together. Her post is titled: “The Ignorance or How we produce the Evil”. I’ll have some quotes below, from that Alice Miller post.
Alice Miller wrote :
“Children who are given love, respect, understanding, kindness, and warmth will naturally develop different characteristics from those who experience neglect, contempt, violence or abuse, and never have anyone they can turn to for kindness and affection. Such absence of trust and love is a common denominator in the formative years of all the dictators I have studied. The result is that these children will tend to glorify the violence inflicted upon them and later to take advantage of every possible opportunity to exercise such violence, possibly on a gigantic scale. Children learn by imitation. Their bodies do not learn what we try to instill in them by words but what they have experienced physically. Battered, injured children will learn to batter and injure others; sheltered, respected children will learn to respect and protect those weaker than themselves. Children have nothing else to go on but their own experiences.”
As Alice Miler stated “Children have nothing else to go on but their own experience”. If the infant child experienced Abandonment Trauma they they will not know how to Love someone. They will do to someone else, what had been done to to them. They will use them and abandon them.
Alice Miller also wrote :
“The well-known American pediatrician Dr. Brazelton once filmed a group of mothers holding and feeding their babies, each in her own particular way. More than 20 years later he repeated the experiment with the women those babies had grown into and who now had babies themselves. Astoundingly, they all held their babies in exactly the same way as they had been held by their mothers, although of course they had no conscious memories from those early years. One of the things Braselton proved with this experiment was that we are influenced in our behavior by our unconscious memories. And those memories can be life affirming and affectionate or traumatic and destructive.”
It is my opinion, that It is not the Narcissist’s fault for developing such a Personality Disorder. It is up to you whether you want to get involved, in any kind of a relationship, with a Personality Disordered individual.
So recapping the two biggest and in my opinion most important Red Flags of a Narcissist. If you learn that the person was not raised by their Birth Mother that is IMHO the most important and biggest of all the Red Flags. Major issues with their Birth Mother is another confirming major Red Flag.
The more Red Flags that you can spot, the higher the probability that you are interacting with a Personality Disordered Individual.
Watch for the Red Flags.
A Narcissist looks deeply into your eyes and softly says that when they look at you they see their “Soul Mate“. Your heart rate increases. Your face starts to flush. Your Fight or Flight response shuts down. You become enamored. Your judgements becomes clouded. You believe the Narcissist and feel oh so wonderful having found “Your Soul Mate“.
A variant of the above is having the Narcissist take you aside (they would not want other potential Targets to hear) to inform you that they feel that the both of you are “Kindred Spirits“.
Not so fast. Heck you hardly know each other. It could be a Red Flag called Love Bombing, which is a tactic commonly used by Cluster-B Disordered individuals such as Narcissists.
Generally you get such “Bullshit” lines when the Narcissist wants something, which they believe that they can con you into “giving to them”.
It could be something physical, like maybe providing a roof over their head when they move into your “Home”. Narcissists are rather good at planning ahead, “for themselves”.
It could be that you are wealthy and the Narcissist feels that it would only be proper if a “Soul Mate” shared their wealth with another “Soul Mate”.
It could be that you are rather Handsome or Beautiful. The Narcissist would feel so proud parading you around on their arm. The Trophy Wife syndrome.
Maybe you are extremely popular and or famous. In such a case the Narcissist will happily tag along to all those special events that you get invited to. That helps to keep their fragile Ego well inflated.
It could be that they are having a bad month. Their last source of Narcissistic Supply finally got fed up and went No Contact. The Narcissist needs Narcissistic Supply, not unlike a Drug Addict needing their fix.
You may not be rich or beautiful or famous. You’re just a normal average human being, who has an internal desire to be find someone to love and to be loved back. As such, to the narcissist you are nothing special.
A Cerebral Narcissist, for example, would not give you a second thought because to them you just are not good enough and so unworthy of becoming their Source of Narcissistic Supply. Unless they are down on their Source of Narcissistic Supply. In such a case they will gladly “use” anyone. Heck when they find a way better Source of Supply, they can unceremoniously dump you. For now they open their bag of tricks and start with the Love Bombing.
Are you still glad the Narcissist told you that they see you as their “Soul Mate” or that you both are “Kindred Spirits“?
Google’s Search Engine is your friend. Do some searches for “Support for Victims of Narcissistic Abuse” and variations of that. You will find many Yahoo Groups, websites and Facebook Groups filled with individuals who in their past, had been used and abused by one or more Narcissists. Visit those groups and ask the prior victims whether they still feel that the Narcissist was ever their “Soul Mate“.
When someone whom you barely know (it could be a co-worker or someone that you met in a bar) starts talking about you and them being “Soul Mates” or being “Kindred Spirits“, take a deep breath. Such talk could very well be an indication that you are dealing with a personality disordered individual.
Been there and heard that. If the nonsense talk of “Soul Mates or Kindred Spirits” comes up, I remain polite. If it happens on a first date, I still try to have a fun evening. When I take my date home, I decline her offer to come in for a night cap drink. A night cap invite, is really an invite to spend the night,
Yes, becoming intimate with pretty much a stranger can be enjoyable. It could also emotionally trap you in the land of regrets. If someone is that easy and eager to get into bed with you, then they could be just as easy and eager to get into bed with someone else (or anyone else for that matter). Of course your mileage may differ. On my way home, I make a mental note to have as little as possible to do with that person again.
Have I ever considered that the “Soul Mates” “Kindred Spirits” nonsense was the real deal? Look, when you barely know someone, they do not know you. The only thing that they have any knowledge of, is how you look physically. But it is what is inside that counts. They have “not” spent enough time with you, to discover “you”. In my opinion, they are only feeding you a line to hook you. I step back and ask myself why would someone do that?
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MRI Brain Scans of Psychopaths are helping in the Understanding of Psychopathy. Dr. Robin Kelly describes what Brain Scan research is showing us about the brains of Disordered individuals and giving disturbing insights into Psychopathy. Note that the findings also apply to other Cluster-B disordered Individuals such as Narcissist and Sociopaths.
Goodbye Psychopaths. 4. The Psychopath’s Brain in a Nutshell. Dr Robin Kelly.
Video is courtesy of the Robin Kelly YouTube channel