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Destructive label

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Destructive label

Postby flightrisk » Sat Nov 02, 2019 11:58 pm

The label of Narcissistic Personality Disorder, as a diagnosis, is simply wrong. It’s a diagnosis described through the eyes of those experiencing the disordered behavior, but it’s not reflective of what the pwNPD experiences. It would be akin to diagnosing cancer patients with “Hairless, Helpless, Burden on Loved Ones Disease”.

It’s stigmatizing and it incites bad feelings. And it’s not helpful for the person afflicted.
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Re: Destructive label

Postby ZeroZ » Sun Nov 03, 2019 12:39 am

I agree, and statistically speaking all the narcissist everyone is harping on about on social media are probably not NPD and just assholes or just scapegoats for the ‘victims’ inability to maintain a relationship because she is probably horrible but anyway look on the bright side professionals just look at narcs as selfish and childish ASPD gets looked at like degenerate abusers that no one wants to touch.
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Re: Destructive label

Postby Akuma » Sun Nov 03, 2019 6:16 am

I think it depends on the context. A lot of the DSM/ICD based diagnoses are of course symptom based and therefore dont describe a person but a [hopefully] rather distinct set of pathologies that is supposed to make it easier for clinics etc. to categorize patients and offer [hopefully] treatments that work for them. An example would be xPD vs substance abuse disorder or eating disorders vs borderline pds.
Then from the clinicians side there might be certain expectations that malleable, submissive patients are easier to work with and more pleasing, so certain diagnoses might give them bad expectations and counter-reactions - this is supposed to be addressed in their team meetings though as a normal side effect of psychological treatment.
On the other hand side of course laypeople using NPD or narcissism often use it as a term for describing a demonized entity, not describing a, psychological disorder - especially not one informed by the intricacies and the history of the term used. We are seeing this not only with annoyed girlfriends though but with the so-designated themselves. People who show up here clearly showing obsessive or introjective-depressive symptoms, demonizing all sorts of behavior as symptoms of "narcissism". A striking example proclaimed lately that "not caring about anything" (read depressive nihilism) or having his own opinions (read agency/self-esteem) are for him clear indicators he has ASPD or NPD [traits].
But thats not the words fault. Narcissism as a psychological word is so broad, that if anything you could attack NPD from a linguistic perspective, as narcissistic can mean "pertaining to the self", so its like "Personal Personality Disorder" :p

ZeroZ wrote: ASPD gets looked at like degenerate abusers that no one wants to touch.


Just yesterday I was looking at a clinic (sadly private and I wont be able to afford it), which actually listed ASPD explicitly in their list of illnesses that they treat.
dx: dissociative disorder + npd
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Re: Destructive label

Postby ZeroZ » Sun Nov 03, 2019 2:07 pm

flightrisk wrote:The label of Narcissistic Personality Disorder, as a diagnosis, is simply wrong. It’s a diagnosis described through the eyes of those experiencing the disordered behavior, but it’s not reflective of what the pwNPD experiences. It would be akin to diagnosing cancer patients with “Hairless, Helpless, Burden on Loved Ones Disease”

It’s stigmatizing and it incites bad feelings. And it’s not helpful for the person afflicted.


Is it really bad if found this part funny? Asking for a friend
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Re: Destructive label

Postby SelfSerf » Sun Nov 03, 2019 8:45 pm

Akuma wrote:On the other hand side of course laypeople using NPD or narcissism often use it as a term for describing a demonized entity, not describing a, psychological disorder - especially not one informed by the intricacies and the history of the term used. We are seeing this not only with annoyed girlfriends though but with the so-designated themselves. People who show up here clearly showing obsessive or introjective-depressive symptoms, demonizing all sorts of behavior as symptoms of "narcissism". A striking example proclaimed lately that "not caring about anything" (read depressive nihilism) or having his own opinions (read agency/self-esteem) are for him clear indicators he has ASPD or NPD [traits].


Tbh, this is going to sound grandiose but unless you had experienced some odd and downright scary things where it literally feels like your consciousness is being "occupied" by something, am not sure this position can be declared final. Some have said here and I think you were also of the opinion that there is no point in trying to differentiate between "the true self" from the false self. And in a general sense I would agree. But if you look at what a personality/Self is from a spiritual aspect it´s obviously very malleable and varies with whom the person interacts with. But in any traditional sense, people´s Selves at least feel to be less transient in time but to the Narcissist, this might not hold true and it is none more true than for covert narcs who have very little sense of their own self (being capable of getting so down on themselves as to seek even to destroy their any sense of self-worth through attacking themselves. Any destructive obsession with the self is however, still an obsession with the self (which is by definition unhealthy).

Now, that aside, this True Self I mentioned earlier merely because I have experienced (and written here in a post once) after real live hypnosis aimed at bolstering self-esteem that there is a "real self" (or maybe a split of self, if you prefer?) under or alongside the false self. After going through a particularly tumultous time (that elicited me finally turning towards the ASPD spectrum and basically abandoning all my emotional needs that I used to hide so well), the day after the hypnosis I awoke in bed after a very emotional dream where I was crying out of feeling sheer relief like a child.
I initially seeked hypnosis (and therapy at the time plus holotropic/bioenergetic breathing) to recover my lost self and emotions.

The dream was so vivid and felt real that when I woke I was extremely disappointed to find it untrue (my mother having returned somehow, like having faked her death or smth) and I experienced like a minute of a shift where my inner voice was taunting my emotional body (or true/real self) so to speak, basically in a derogatory way. While I (as the consciousness or the observer) was almost in awe of what was happening and actually sided with the "weak" self that was being bullied because I felt like it didn´t deserve it, I nonetheless could not stop the harsh inner voice. Maybe this just illustrates a truly schizoid split but unless you have experienced it you would not skip a beat in saying it to be of demonic origin.

Someone here has called it the devil driver as it actually kind of feels like possession. Any normal person (in my shoes) would have gone to therapy by now but the fact that I am almost incapable of calling off the show is making me forego it indefinitely. The suicidality and bad situations that your thinking puts you through almost seems like your mind is trying to kill itself and there is only this mute force of consciousness that you are barely consenting to. What other than demonic possession is this?

I would prefer not to believe in supernatural forces but I´ve experienced plenty to believe both explanations might be correct. One mustn´t necessarily forego the psychiatric materialistic explanation entirely to admit that there is a spiritual aspect to being human. Narcissism being a very severe ailment. ASPD = Psychopath was after all denoted to be from psykhe+pathos as a sick mind or suffering soul and what else are we really?

In my mind there is nothing in this reality to convince me that there are not interdimensional entities running the show that we are all plugged into. It´s just that is a thought one might not want to entertain. Or maybe it´s just the narcissist´s disordered thinking that denotes the Self "Bad" and The Other being Good, having fed this message subconsciously while growing up.
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Re: Destructive label

Postby ZeroZ » Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:01 pm

I’m reading Elinor Greenberg now she’s treats lots of narcissists and borderlines and one way she has clients get in touch with their inner self or whatever term you like is to sit in almost a meditative state in complete silence and literally ask yourself what is wrong or what do you need. She claims the inner self is forever communicating with us in subtle ways thAt may be getting ignored.

One such instance was a sudden surge of anxiety, when she investigated what could be causing this she had a conference she didn’t feel prepared for so she spent extra time on. It can be almost any thought that pops in your head or even an image, take note and try to investigate what it could mean. Her belief is that there is usually some reason why something is there.

I tried this and I didn’t have any luck with this but I haven’t had much success with meditation either, I’m sure more practice would help
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Re: Destructive label

Postby Akuma » Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:50 am

Sorry SelfSerf I have no idea what you were trying to say. I'm just going to ramble a bit, maybe I hit some contact-point somewhere.
The True Self/False Self dichotomy is ultimately about how true you are to your impulses, needs and desires - I've probably said this in the past already, it was "invented" by Donald Winnicott to describe alienation from children from their aliveness by the rules and limitations set by their parents. Its not used a lot in the context of NPD, so I never know what to make of it when it appears here on the forum, especially since it doesn't have a lot of concretely descriptive value when people use it, since its too abstract.
If such a thing exists in "Spirituality" depends a lot on what branch you are looking at. If you are looking at Advaita-Vedanta of course you will find the Atma-Brahma nonduality and this ideas about some sort of primordial consciousness with everything else being Maya or the play of Ishvara... Its a hard philosophical problem for the adherents of that school to show how such nonduality would be possible and how you can realize it if its nondual though.
In Buddhism in comparison no such thing as a True Self exists at all (Anatman doctrine) and enlightenment to a large degree realizing this, thereby destroying the 12 links of dependent arising by uprooting Avidya (believing there is a true self).
I think its important to make a clear distinction between these concepts, as they are not only different philosophical entities but "working" with them also is pretty different and has different goals and implications.
As to demonic possession... its hard for me to see what you are getting at. If you hear voices after waking up it could be hypnopompic hallucinations. But if you experience your own minds contents as objects (read out there) more often, that per definition is in the psychotic range.
But interpreting experience of course is also done on the basis of beliefs. Having grown up in a very fundamentalist {the apocalypse comes soon] christian sect, I can understand that deconnecting yourself from childish ideas about demons might be a problem, even when you are not having some schizophrenia spectrum illness. But it can also just be a way to delegate responsibility for your well-being or for the multi-facetted nature of your mind to some "evil beings" so you dont have to deal with that, or so you dont feel guilty.
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Re: Destructive label

Postby SelfSerf » Mon Nov 04, 2019 11:31 am

Akuma wrote:But interpreting experience of course is also done on the basis of beliefs.

But it can also just be a way to delegate responsibility for your well-being or for the multi-facetted nature of your mind to some "evil beings" so you dont have to deal with that, or so you dont feel guilty.


Yeah, if anything it just illustrates the Narcissistic psyche´s inability to take responsibility for their own actions. I think you hit the nail right on the head.

Ok, sorry for the self-indulging slightly off-topic post but...

As for what I was aiming at, along with the reference to bioenergetic breathing - essentially, a pwNPD comorbid with ASPD is so involved in their false self and detached from their feelings (basically equal to how sociopaths are able to detach from their feelings, with the difference that for them it´s just their emotions are short-lived) that the body feels just like a vessel at most times, like you wear the false self as a second skin. When I somehow find a way to ground myself and let myself "feel" in the borderline sense, I only feel despair and desperation. This usually happens when I fall ill. I regress very quickly back to that young self.

Obviously, being that dreams have to do with your subconscious, after awaking for the first few minutes one might still kind of be drifting between dreamlife and wakefulness. What I experienced was like a split between my body and mind, as atotal misalignment. The ´inner critic´ was what I felt as somewhat of a foreign, possessive voice, whereas the sadness that I felt after the dream was very specifically stuck like a ball in my chest. And it was like locked in, feeling impossible to recover or to give that ´weak part´ of me any more power because it felt helpless, just stuck inside.

With that holotropic breathing session I did a week or so later I actually released some of the emotion but only after I had done intense breathing for 15minutes+. It was very hard to break through that defensive layer and my conscious awareness did not at the very least want to relinquish control over my body. As I kept hyperventilating, I felt my hands tense up in a very non-human like way, like there was extreme tension in the form of cramping from my wrists and I actually heard slithers coming from my throat while I was breathing (i.e. reptilian-like).

Now, one can speak of the reptilian bran taking over the mammalian one (the one that hosts feelings and affection. People heavily into spirituality might speak of a real war being waged on a spiritual level, in other dimensions, not seen in ordinary reality, but obviously felt by those more sensitive).

When the instructor put a blanket on I actually felt like I was being cradled in this light. There was of course suggestive music involved but after that release of emotion I just laid on the mat crying for what was probably more than 30 minutes, I actually felt intense light and some sort of angelic presence in the room and it was incredibly soothing. (Again, there is no doubt that my beliefs growing up probably had something to do with it). Sadly, of course after recovering from it, I still was somewhat dumbfounded and was back to my old self. The ways of interacting with the world did not change in the very least (being all I know, essentially). But that hour or two there was a regression to that age I emotionally froze at. That emotional age (which bioenergitcally occupies only a tiny portion in my chest) I designated as the True Self. Which, obviously as you elucidated, is not the correct designation.
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Re: Destructive label

Postby ZeroZ » Mon Nov 04, 2019 12:05 pm

The way I understand it is it’s simply a denial of your true self, your true feelings, emotions, and needs. As they were taught at a young age that they were inappropriate or not up to standard so the child buries these feelings and desires deep down along with their needs and feelings that most people have to guide them.

Instead they learn to create an image of what people want to see, they want to be accepted and feel like they are good but at the expense of their own emotional and ‘spiritual’ health as their true needs and desires are not being heard. I was punished for dancing when I was young, it was seen as foolish so I was humiliated by putting me on display outside like a monkey to perform for strangers while I was being observed to make sure I did it the same. I still to this day cannot dance in public. I never made this connection except recently through therapy. So something I was so free and open with is now a buried fear, that I hide from everyone except you nice people. Anyway that’s what it means to me, people are so different that it’s truelly individual
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Re: Destructive label

Postby ViniStonemoss » Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:39 pm

flightrisk wrote:The label of Narcissistic Personality Disorder, as a diagnosis, is simply wrong. It’s a diagnosis described through the eyes of those experiencing the disordered behavior, but it’s not reflective of what the pwNPD experiences. It would be akin to diagnosing cancer patients with “Hairless, Helpless, Burden on Loved Ones Disease”.

It’s stigmatizing and it incites bad feelings. And it’s not helpful for the person afflicted.


I am not sure this is a working analogy. A working analogy with cancer could be depression. A state where you aren't fully functional or fully present for your loved ones.

People aren't mad at narcissists because they aren't fully functional, but because they can be controlling or vindictive.

It seems that pwNPD often focus on how they are perceived, are concerned with whether they are perceived as bad, and how to correct this perception.

But something Masterson hinted at, if I remember correctly, and that I agree with: the more you focus on how people perceive you, the more your own focus is shifting away from yourself and interpreting your own emotions.

This is true for everybody but particularly relevant in the case of NPD, given the disorder's genesis.
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