Before writing this article I did a quick search on the web to see what others wrote about this topic. Most articles say that narcissists are driven insane by rejection, losing, criticism and so on. While that’s totally correct, normal people can also be affected by such things. No one likes losing or being rejected. In this article, I want to explain unique things that drive narcissists insane.
To understand well what drives a narcissist insane, you have to know that a narcissist is someone who lives with unhealed emotional wounds. In some of my previous articles, I explained how a person develops narcissism after going through a horrible life experience that damages them psychologically.
Remind Me Of My Past and I Will go Insane
Before, I explain what drives narcissists insane let me give you a short story of one narcissist. John was raised by abusive parents who used to criticize him so much that he grew up feeling worthless. He was shy and introverted. Due to his low self-esteem, in his teenage years he never managed to become social or get a girlfriend like his friends. This made him feel so bad whenever he compared himself to his friends.
When John grew up, he managed to get over his shyness and got a girlfriend. Even though his parents were no longer beside him criticizing him, he never managed to get rid of his old emotional wounds. Deep inside him, he still felt worthless. The result was that, he became an abusive narcissist especially towards his partner.
Subconsciously, John believed that he wasn’t good enough for his partner, that’s why he used to criticize, gaslight, and make her feel worthless so that she won’t leave. John was afraid that if his girlfriend managed to build enough self-esteem, she would leave him for someone better. That’s why he did everything possible to make her feel worthless.
John was extremely sensitive to rejection and abandonment simply because it reminded of his past where he was too inadequate to get a girlfriend or have a normal social life.
This is What Drives a Narcissist Insane
Anything that touches a narcissist’s emotional wound drives them insane. You can predict what will drive a particular narcissist crazy by examining what kind of emotional wounds they developed. John wasn’t sensitive to rejection only because he’s was a narcissist but because it reminded him of his unpleasant past where he was “too worthless” to get a girlfriend.
A narcissist who never had a problem attracting people of the opposite sex will not be as sensitive to rejection as John. That’s why it’s wrong to assume that there are certain things that will make any narcissist go insane.
Of course narcissists in general are highly sensitive people and they may react aggressively to any negative feedback such as being ignored but every narcissist will have his own emotional wounds that make them extremely sensitive to certain things. Even narcissists who were pampered in childhood will develop emotional wounds for reasons I discussed in this article.
Feelings of Inferiority and Emotional Sensitivity
Behind the image of superiority that narcissists project, there are usually strong feelings of inferiority and low self-esteem. All narcissists try to get rid of inferiority by striving for superiority in many different ways. A financially successful narcissist who has a big company and a malignant narcissist who abuses his children and wife actually have the same goal which is becoming superior.
This may sound weird but an abusive narcissist is always someone who failed to achieve superiority in a normal way, so they look for a cheaper way to superiority such as abusing, dominating and controlling their partner.
Anything that blocks a narcissist’s road to superiority can drive them insane. While the good successful narcissists would fiercely fight anything that threatens the success of his company, the malignant narcissist will go insane whenever he loses control over his wife.
How to Protect Yourself
If you are in an abusive relationship with a narcissist, the best thing to do is to prepare yourself and leave the relationship. If your situation doesn’t allow you to leave right away, you should learn to deal with an abusive narcissist. There are many articles that I wrote earlier that you may find helpful such as this one.
On the other hand, if your narcissistic partner is not abusive and don’t want to end the relationship, you should just try to understand their emotional wounds and avoid touching them.