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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder can be the result of narcissistic abuse, because it is a situation where so much is threatened. Our inner being is completely under siege with a narc. Narcissists are experts at seeking out weak points, and bombarding them relentlessly. It is like living in a war zone, with no idea when the next attack could be. (NOTE: Many consider PTSD from narcissistic abuse to be "Complex" or "Compound" PTSD.)

Narcissistic Personality Disorder involves arrogant behavior, a lack of empathy for other people, and a need for admiration-all of which must be consistently evident at work and in relationships.

People who are narcissistic are frequently described as cocky, self-centered, manipulative, and demanding. Narcissists may concentrate on unlikely personal outcomes (e.g., fame) and may be convinced that they deserve special treatment. Related Personality Disorders: Antisocial, Borderline, Histrionic.

Narcissism is a less extreme version of Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Narcissism involves cockiness, manipulativeness, selfishness, power motives, and vanity-a love of mirrors. Related personality traits include: Psychopathy, Machiavellianism.

Narcissists tend to have high self-esteem. However, narcissism is not the same thing as self-esteem. People who have high self-esteem are often humble, whereas narcissists rarely are. It was once thought that narcissists have high self-esteem on the surface, but deep down they are insecure.

However, the latest evidence indicates that narcissists are actually secure or grandiose at both levels. Onlookers may infer that insecurity is there because narcissists tend to be defensive when their self-esteem is threatened (e.g., being ridiculed); narcissists can be aggressive. The sometimes dangerous lifestyle may more generally reflect sensation-seeking or impulsivity (e.g., risky sex, bold financial decisions).

Gaslighting or gas-lighting is a form of mental abuse in which information is twisted/spun, selectively omitted to favor the abuser, or false information is presented with the intent of making victims doubt their own memory, perception and sanity.

The term "gaslighting" comes from the 1938 stage play Gas Light, in which a husband attempts to drive his wife crazy by dimming the lights (which were powered by gas) in their home, and then he denies that the light changed when his wife points it out. It is an extremely effective form of emotional abuse, that causes a victim to question their own feelings, instincts, and sanity, which gives the abusive partner a lot of power.

References and Further Info:

The Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453)

The National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)

Elephant Journal: A Narcissist & an Empath Walk Into a Bar: Understanding the Dynamic of Abuse

Psych Central: Narcissistic Personality Disorder Symptoms

Psychology Today: The Narcissistic Mother

Huffington Post: 7 Strategies for Dealing With the Narcissist You Love

Worksheets and Info Regarding Narcissism & Gaslighting

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