Before you know what makes a narcissist panic, it’s important to understand narcissists’ weaknesses and how they think.
Narcissism is a defence mechanism that develops as a result of going through a very unpleasant experience at some point in someone’s life that destroys their self-esteem and leaves them ashamed of whom they are. This mostly happens in childhood; however, adults can also develop narcissism if they went through the same experience
One case example of an experience that can induce narcissism in a child is neglect. However keep in mind that pampered children also have high chances of becoming narcissists, even if they have been through the exact opposite. When children are neglected, they usually conclude that it all happened because they are bad. When this conclusion is made whether true or false, it lowers their self-esteem to a level that is unfit for developing a normal personality, in accordance with social norms.
At this point, this kid is not a narcissist yet. Some people accept their fate and live their life beaten. However this is not always the case. The same experience can produce a narcissist, when a person chooses to build a defence mechanism to cover up their low self-esteem and project a total opposite of what is felt inside. There is also an uncommon case of people who follow the right path to build their self-esteem and never become narcissistic at all, or at least develop healthy narcissism. These are not the narcissists that I’m going to talking about in this article, as they are not a problem our society.
“I’m feeling vulnerable and I actually am, I must appear invulnerable so that nobody will dare to hurt me. I’m unworthy I must exaggerate my self-importance.” Part of narcissist’s thoughts. Of course this takes place deep in their mind that most of them have no idea of what is going on.
What Makes a Narcissist Panic?
This exaggerated self-importance which is not based on real achievement is destructive for the narcissist and people around him. It’s like building a skyscraper with a very poor foundation. The earth shakes slightly, it collapses. Anything that challenges this larger than life self-view can make them panic. The more their personality is a façade the easier they panic.
Here are 5 things that can easily make a narcissist panic.
- Defeat: Nobody likes to be defeated but narcissists dread it. Even a small defeat like losing in an argument is unacceptable for some narcissists. Try to debate with one on a subject you understand well, and you will notice how they can deflect the subject when they start to sense defeat.
- Criticism: Narcissists believe that they are perfect, criticising them proves this pseudo-fact wrong. Criticism is not only unacceptable but it can also bring very bad consequences in the process of denying it. Criticising a narcissist in a situation that they are not able to defend themselves would really terrify them. Criticism hurts them most when it touches an already existing insecurity.
- Confrontation: If a narcissist is a bad parent for example, they already know it and choose to bury this fact deep in their mind and pretend that it does not exist. When you confront them, you bring it to the surface where it burns. The narcissist will not only deny it but you may also get punished. Don’t be surprised if you get a silent treatment after a bitter confrontation.
- Losing control: Narcissists crave control over people around him when he has lost control over his own life. Losing control also makes them feel weak and vulnerable. A narcissist who has lost control usually turns into a control freak to make sure that they control other people before they control them. The last thing a narcissist want, is to lose control over someone close to him.
- Ageing: Narcissists who depend on their good “physique” to fetch the narcissist supply that they need to stabilise their low self-esteem are terrified the most of ageing. Those who use their intelligence to impress people are less affected with ageing.
Should I Make a Narcissist Panic?
Making a narcissist panic is a dangerous game. A wronged narcissist can seek revenge with passion. If you intend to do it, make sure that you do it with caution. It can work well if you are in a position where they cannot hurt you. It can also work if they depend on you for something very important to them that they would not risk losing.
I’m very against taking advantage of someone else’s weakness to exploit them. I understand that narcissists can be so hurtful that the only thing you want is to see them suffering. But hurting them back is not a healthy long-term solution.
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