When their backs are against the wall, the narcissist can behave as though they are feeling genuine regret. This might, though, be a ruse to restore the confidence of the person they’re exploiting. In addition, working from a victim’s stance aids him or her in exerting influence over others through shame.
The most important psychological tool in a narcissist’s arsenal is projective recognition. It’s what causes the toxic chemistry that binds an empath to a narcissist mentally. Projection is a psychoanalytic concept for the implicit mechanism of expelling one’s own intolerable characteristics and attributing them to somebody else. It is the first part of projective identity.
A person who is habitually rude could, for example, call someone else rude. This person does not see the consistency of themselves but notices it in others. This is a popular defensive strategy used by narcissists. I sometimes hear the narcissist in a partnership “diagnose” their mate as a narcissist in couples therapy.
The empath’s role is to identify the second component, which is identification. Since empaths have access to deeper feelings including intuition, introspection, profound guilt, responsibility, and empathy, they are automatically less rigidly defended. Because several of the deeper abilities induce a tinge of pain in the ego, a person with access to the deeper emotions has a stronger ego. It necessitates the activation of less defense mechanisms.
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