Randi G. Fine
Fine Life Issues Counseling
Narcissistic Personality Disorder
- Petition to Stop Parental Alienation
- FREE Offer for Narcissistic Abuse Survivors
- Close Encounters of the Worst Kind
- Prayer for My Integrity and Dignity
- Toxic Narcissistic Leadership in the Workplace
- Traditional Therapy Ineffective with Narcissistic Abuse Sufferers
- Narcissistic Abuse on Mental Health News Radio
- Rising Above Narcissistic Victimization
- How to Heal From Narcissistic Abuse
- Statistics Unjust to Victims of Narcissistic Abuse
- Narc Speak
- Emotional Child Abuse in Narcissistic Families
- The Narcissistic Abuse Survivors Guide to Healing and Recovery
- Randi’s Podcast A Fine Time for Healing
- Effects of Brainwashing on Narcissistic Victims and Survivors
- Considering NPD Counseling
- Self Centered Maternal Narcissist
- Benefit of Difficult People
- Validation and Encouragement for NPD Abuse Survivors
- Emotional Child Abuse Poem
- Narcissistic Mothers Day Card 2017
- Divorcing the Narcissist and Protecting Your Children
- Grieving the Loss of Your Abusive NPD Relationship
- Adult Children of Narcissistic Abuse
- Breaking Up With a Narcissist
- How Narcissistic Abuse Causes Complex PTSD
- How to Cope with Your Narcissistic Family During the Holiday Season
- Growing Through Pain Picture Quote
- Protecting Yourself from Abusive Narcissists and Shamers
- Childhood Narcissistic Abuse Quote
- Limiting Beliefs Held by Narcissistic Abuse Victims
- Narcissistic Parents Picture Quote
- How to Deal with Narcissistic Parents
- Narcissistic Abuse Related Weight Issues and Eating Disorders
- How to Deal with Narcissistic People
- Are You Suffering from Narcissistic Victim Syndrome
- Tyrannical Rule of the Narcissistic Father
- Narcissists Objectify and Dehumanize
- Narcissistic Raging Blaming and Bullying
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Is The Mayo Clinic Blind to Epidemic Levels of NPD?
Written by Randi G. Fine, Narcissistic Abuse Expert, Counselor, and Author of
It never fails to amaze me that when learning of my professional platform, one out of every three people I talk to report having either suffered narcissistic abuse or knowing someone who has.
Narcissistic abuse has reached epidemic proportions. Awareness of it has skyrocketed in the last ten years. Those who have suffered the enduring effects of it for years, now have a wealth of resources to identify the source of their pain. Sadly the mental health community at large has yet to acknowledge that this problem even exists.
As an NPD abuse counselor worldwide I modestly estimate that hundreds of thousands of people (if not millions) have had their lives destroyed by the narcissistic personality disordered. Children all over the world are consistently targeted by predatory parents who use and abuse them. They are deprived of their right to thrive.
Narcissists are everywhere. They run rampant in families, romantic relationships, friendships, workplaces, the corporate world, the entertainment industry, and the government. Covert narcissists, of which there are many, operate just below the radar, therefore are not easily recognized. That makes them extremely dangerous. Overt narcissists, much more obvious in their predatory behaviors, are more likely to be exposed. These are the actors, politicians, and government officials we frequently hear about in the news; now more than ever.
One would wonder why nothing is being done to stop these masses of soul sucking criminals. The answer is three-fold. Narcissists are masters of disguise, licensed mental health professionals have little experience working with them, and the criminal justice system is easily manipulated by them.
Those with narcissistic personality disorder are mentally ill but not insane. They are fully present in the real world and cognizant of everything they do. Narcissists are masterful manipulators who employ brainwashing tactics and psychological warfare to control their victims. They brilliantly mastermind covert plans that the non-pathological mind could never even conceive, knowing that their victims will never catch on. They believe they are smarter, better, more perfect, and more deserving than everyone else is. The problem is that they do not know anything is wrong with them.
Due to the nature of the NPD disorder, those who have it cannot recognize they do. Their pathology blinds them to the reality of who they are. Even a subtle mention that something about them needs improving incites a terrifying rage. So, though it is possible for those with narcissistic personality disorder to get better, they never will.
Narcissists rarely seek out the guidance of licensed mental health professionals because they don’t think anything is wrong with them. If they are coerced into treatment they will either manipulate the therapists or doctor into believing there is nothing wrong with them, or they will call them quacks and never go back.
Licensed mental health professionals cannot legally diagnose a disorder without having first done a complete mental health evaluation. No matter how obvious the person’s pathology is they will rarely call it by name without doing one.
Knowing there is no true data on the prevalence of NPD, I was shocked and appalled to see the Mayo Clinic publicly classifying the disorder as “rare.” Statistics on the prevalence of NPD are highly inaccurate because they are based on reporting and studies. Reporting cannot possibly reflect an accurate count, nor can studies.
I and many other pioneers work tirelessly to bring awareness to the global prevalence of NPD and the abuse caused by it. That irresponsible reporting coming from a highly respected, highly regarded institution such as the Mayo Clinic is hugely disappointing. Understanding as I do the vast ignorance that exists among many professionals on this topic, I should not have been so surprised. Still I gasped when I searched NPD and saw this report plastered on the entire right side of a Google page.
I promise to passionately fight to bring awareness to this suffering until it exists no more. You have my word. I will not be deterred.
Narc Speak: A Language All Their Own
From the book Close Encounters of the Worst Kind: The Narcissistic Abuse Survivor’s Guide to Healing and Recovery
Written by Randi G. Fine
In interacting with narcissists you may notice that their methods of communication are peculiar.
Narcissists talk at people, not to them. They go on and on about what is happening in their lives, though to truly know them is to not believe any of it. If you try to share what is important to you with a narcissist he will diminish the importance of it and steer the conversation right back to him.
If it ever appears that they care about what you are saying, I can assure you they do not. They will allow you to elaborate, only to scrutinize your words for future ammunition.
Narcissists never truly listen, because in their grandiose opinion of themselves, what others have to say is largely a waste of their time, unless it includes words of adoration and admiration. Other than that, the only thing that matters to narcissists is what they have to say. While we talk, they cleverly formulate their responses and the tone of their delivery. All responses are strategically geared to fend off attacks, avoid the truth, and evade accountability.
One form of “Narc Speak” is the frequent use of “always” and “never” statements. Narcissists use these condemning, gross exaggerations of partial truths to defend their position by deflecting or projecting blame back onto their victims.
Without saying it directly, the narcissist insinuates that the victim is selfish, thoughtless, inadequate, or inept. These are statements designed to induce sympathy or obligation. For example: “You always think you are right,” “You never loved me,” “You always forget to…” “You never do what you say.”
Narc Speak is ambiguous and non-committal. They never say what they mean or mean what they say and can never be held accountable. Harsh criticisms are heavily cloaked in consideration and concern. Words are meant to manipulate and disorient us.
Many wonder if there is a “narcissistic speak manual” and if all narcissists have read it. It is uncanny how similar the phrases they all use are. My mother has used these phrases for years, and I hear them over and over from the people I counsel. It never fails to amaze me.
These expressions must always be interpreted because what narcissists say and what they mean are very different. Not only are the phrases meant to clue us in, but the inflections and tones are as well. The better you know your narcissist the more easily you can interpret what he says. His phrases are lost on strangers or those who have yet to catch on to his pathology.
Following are some common examples:
- When narcissists say, “I love you,” it means one of three things: they have heard those words used by others and it seems to be an endearing way of manipulating you into loving them; they feel you are pulling away and want to suck you back in; or they want you to say you love them back.
- When narcissists say, “I never said that,” it means that they are either trying to manipulate you, throw you off balance and make you feel crazy, or that you caught them in a lie and they don’t want to admit that they said what they said. They play the role of the perpetual innocent.
- When narcissists say, “I only want you to be happy,” it means “I only want me to be happy. If that means you remain miserable, so be it.”
- When narcissists say, “You are too sensitive” it means that you won’t tip toe on egg shells around them like they want you to, or you won’t let them assault and abuse you the way they want to.
- When narcissists say, “You never do anything for me” it means that whatever you have done for them in the past doesn’t count. What have you done for them today?
- When narcissists say, “You aren’t remembering correctly,” it means that they like their version of the story better than yours because their version portrays them in a better light.
- When narcissists say, “You have no respect for me” it means they are angry because you have boundaries and won’t let them abuse you.
- When narcissists say, “Think about what you are doing to your family/children/parents, etc.” it means “I want you to feel very guilty about what you are doing to me.”
- When narcissists say, “Look how much I have sacrificed for you” it means “I own you and I want you to feel guilty.”
- When narcissists say, “Why do you always bring up the past,” it means that they can bring up your past anytime they want to, but you have no right to call them on anything they ever did.
- When narcissists say, “Forgive me or I apologize if I did anything wrong,” it means “How dare you accuse me of doing anything wrong. I never do anything wrong and will never offer you a genuine apology, though I will make it sound as if I am apologizing to get you off my back.”
- When narcissists say, “What do you want from me?” it means “How dare you ask me to give any part of myself to you. I could care less about your experience, feelings, and pain.”
- When narcissists say, “What about the things you put me through?” it means that they are deflecting the focus by dredging up the past and reminding you of the all “perceived” things you did to them. They are saying that you were far worse to them than they were to you. If anything they should be confronting you about what you did to them.
- When narcissists say, “I’m only trying to help,” it means “I have an agenda that is self-serving.”
- When narcissists say, “You’ve never cared about me,” it means you have given them nothing today.
- When narcissists say, “So and so’s children are so wonderful to their mother,” it means “I can abuse you all I want, but I want you to worship me.”
- When narcissists say, “My ex was too controlling,” it means “I was too controlling and my ex finally got tired of being pushed around.”
- When narcissists say, “No one will love you as much as I do,” it means that they fear losing their supply and believe that they can manipulate you back into continuing to give your all.
If you have ever wondered why your energy feels drained after conversing with a narcissist, now you know. Constantly having to read between the lines of what he says is exhausting.
If you have to talk to the narcissist in your life, keep the conversation short and the subject matter neutral. Avoid frustration by ignoring his manipulative statements. You will never win a verbal battle with him so don’t even try.
Excerpt from Close Encounters of the Worst Kind: The Narcissistic Abuse Survivor’s Guide to Healing and Recovery
Written by Randi G. Fine
Children in families with narcissistic parents understand that their family operates by a set of unspoken rules—rules that feel confusing and painful. The only stability these children know comes from adhering to the agenda of their narcissistic parent. The feelings of the children are never recognized. It is demonstrated over and over by the narcissistic parents that their children’s feelings do not matter.
The fact that the parent can sometimes be nice is a primary source of confusion for the children. Wanting to believe they are loved, children deny what is actually happening to them. This causes them to buy into the deception over and over. The truth is far too painful to accept.
The children spend a lifetime desperately trying to get attention. If they receive any favor from their parents, it will only be scraps. Even so, they never stop trying.
Children with narcissistic parents do learn that any kindness shown to them comes with strings attached. Niceness or generosity from the parent is a debt the child must repay. Children are forever beholden to the parent. Any love received has conditions. They are never loved for who they are, only for how well they please.
Even though this dynamic becomes obvious, the children do not know how to be loved any other way. Though it is painful, it seems the norm. Conditional love is the only love they have ever known. Love will continue being associated with pain and conditions until it negatively impacts their adult relationships in ways that eventually cause them to evaluate their patterns.
Children are deliberately broken by their narcissistic parents to remain dependent. They are given no tools for living and are deprived of a self. Their identity is merged with their parent’s identity to such a degree that children do not know where they let off and their parents begin.
Narcissistic parents do not want boundaries between themselves and their children. Boundaries, which allow a self that is separate and independent from the parents, sabotage the control they work relentlessly to maintain. With no boundaries between the children and their parents and no acknowledgment of their feelings, children do not learn healthy ways to process their emotional experiences.
The assertion of feelings, rights, or thoughts can lead to much bigger problems for the children—rejection, isolation, anger, and violence—so they learn to repress these things to keep peace in the home.
Children internalize and absorb whatever their parents tell them. If they are told that they are at fault, they believe that they are at fault. If they constantly receive messages that they are not good enough, that they are stupid, or that they are bad, these things become their truths and define them.
Narcissistic parents are mostly controlling and angry, though they occasionally throw in some kindness and generosity. Alternating between the two, often in rapid fashion, they keep children emotionally off balance. This is a form of mind control well known by survivors of POW camps.
Children in these families never know where they stand with unpredictable, unaccountable, and inconsistent parents. Never having healthy coping skills taught to them or modeled for them, they do not know how to emotionally process their turbulent home environment.
Children cannot emotionally exist in this climate of instability and erratic surprise attacks without going insane. Since they do not have healthy coping mechanisms in place on a conscious level, their subconscious must step in to protect them. Where boundaries should exist to define what is and what is not acceptable, walls are built.
Walls provide internal places to hide. Over time these walls become fortresses. Trapped behind these fortresses are feelings that have never been dealt with. Until addressed, these buried emotions will remain there for a lifetime, wreaking havoc.
Help has arrived.
Don’t let the narcissist steal another second from you!
Sit back, relax, nestle into a comfy sofa and enjoy a soothing cup of tea. Turn the pages of this book, knowing this guide will help you work through some of the most challenging circumstances a person can encounter on the planet. You are in good hands with Randi Fine’s outstanding book. Readers, you are in for a real treat. ~Andrea Schneider, MSW, LCSW Psychotherapist/Life Coach specializing in narcissistic abuse recovery in Los Angeles.
Close Encounters is a comprehensive, compassionate and supportive guide to understanding the unique and complex nature of narcissistic abuse and the emotionally crippling syndrome that results from it. This groundbreaking book gives narcissistic abuse survivors the most complete and trustworthy road map to guide them through the healing process, into recovery, and ultimately to the freedom and happiness they deserve.
Narcissistic abuse survivors, concerned supporters, and helping professionals will find the most up-to-date information on the psychological, emotional and physical effects of NPD abuse. Readers also learn how narcissistic abuse infiltrates various settings including work, family-of-origin, friendships and romantic relationships.
Written in a non-labeling, non-judgmental style, survivors will find this book highly educating and empowering.
To those people in your life who cannot possibly understand what you have endured, you no longer have to explain. Just hand them this book.
You have suffered enough. Now it is time to heal.
A Fine Time for Healing Gets a Brand New Look!
Lots of fabulous new shows with exciting guests scheduled in the coming months.
For a list of upcoming shows, descriptions, and show links please visit
The angels are always near to those who are grieving, to whisper to them that their loved ones are safe in the hand of God. ~ Quoted in The Angels’ Little Instruction Book by Eileen Elias Freeman, 1994
In 2004 my husband was in the market for a mid-seventies Corvette or Trans Am to add to his antique car collection. He saw an advertisement in the newspaper that looked interesting from a private owner that was selling a Trans Am. He called the number and a woman answered the telephone. She told my husband that the car had been her husband’s but he had died a few days ago. His death had come about suddenly. She hadn’t even buried him yet. Still, she said he should come by and take a look at it.
I had no interest in my husband’s car hobby. He had been looking for awhile by himself – it really didn’t matter to me what car he decided to buy. But it was the weekend, the woman’s house was an hour’s drive away, and he asked me to take a ride with him. I agreed to go along.
The woman had a very nice house, nestled on a wooded lot. A very lovely blonde in her fifties answered the door. She told us that the car was in the garage on the side of the house. She said that the garage had been her husband’s special place. He had turned it into a museum for his many collectibles. She opened the garage door and we were invited to look around. Knowing nothing at all about the Trans Am, she handed my husband the keys and told him to pull it out onto the driveway where he could look it over. While he was absorbed in examining the engine, the two of us stood nearby and chatted.
She told me that she and her husband had always been very close. It had just been the two of them; they had no children. The woman said that the reality of her husband’s death hadn’t fully hit her yet. She didn’t know how she would handle everything without him. I said the only thing I could think to say to console her. “Everything will be okay” I said, repeating it about three times in the course of our conversation because it seemed to comfort her. I asked if she had felt her husband’s presence around her since his death; that he probably was still with her. She said she had been talking to him, but didn’t feel like he was there. Just then the telephone rang. She excused herself and went into the house.
When she came back outside she had a look of relief on her face. She looked curiously at me and said, “I know now that everything will be okay.” I asked her what had changed, how she knew that. Did it have something to do with the phone call she had just received? She said no, it had happened after she hung up the telephone. She said, “I was standing in the living room when I suddenly heard my husband’s voice say, ‘Everything will be okay. He used the same exact words that you did. Now I know that it’s true.” She said, “You are the angel he sent to me to deliver those words. You were brought to me for that purpose.” I gave her a hug and she smiled serenely. Then she looked at me and said, “I can’t thank you enough for coming. You are right–I am going to be just fine.”
I had no doubt.
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In remembrance of all those whose lives were changed forever and all those whose lives were taken on that fateful day, September 11, 2001.
Effects of Brainwashing on Narcissistic Victims and Survivors
Those who have suffered narcissistic abuse find healing on their own very difficult. Whether they realize it or not, the hardest thing to overcome is the brainwashing that has been done to them.
Victims are conditioned to think a certain way by narcissists who want to control them. Narcissists don’t learn and practice brainwashing, manipulation, and control techniques, as most of us would have to in order to effectively use them. It comes naturally to their pathologically depraved minds. They simply know how to do it with little or no deliberation. Since their very survival depends on capturing vulnerable hosts to feed off of, it is a skill that must be second nature to them.
If you have read and listened to everything NPD, understand what you are dealing with, but cannot get passed it or overcome the pain, it is because of the brainwashing that has been done to you. Your mind will always default to the way in which it was conditioned. This state of mind does not have to become a permanent way of thinking, but if you do not get someone to help you deprogram what has been subliminally put in there, you will find this challenge insurmountable.
If you think you are immune to mind control, think again. Anyone, given the right circumstances may be subject to it. If you have had any prolonged exposure to someone with narcissistic personality disorder, I can guarantee you that you are suffering its effects.
The article below briefly explains how brainwashing in abusive relationships occurs. It is based on a report that has come to be known as “Biderman’s Chart of Coercion. To learn more about brainwashing I suggest you do your own research.
Being in an abusive relationship often feels like torture. Sometimes that’s because your partner’s behavior feels like the torture techniques used by mortal enemies instead.
Brainwashing is defined in the Psychology Dictionary as that which “manipulates and modifies a person’s emotions, attitudes, and beliefs.” It reduces a person’s ability to mentally defend themselves and makes it easier for another person to control them.
Brainwashing is one example of how abuse in relationships parallels torture. Brainwashing makes it easier to control a targeted person. And it makes it harder for the person to see their way free of the relationship.
Abusive people often are able to throw the targets of their abuse into a trance that makes it difficult for them to think clearly. Targets of abuse can begin to take on the opinions of the abusive person and lose themselves.
A man or woman who is peppered with their partner’s opinion, given little or no time to recover, and kept busy responding to demands may not have much mental energy left over. They may be inundated with the partner’s version of events to the point where it is difficult to hold on to their own perspective. The anxiety that can be produced by being the target of abuse also makes it difficult to think clearly.
In 1956, Albert Biderman studied how prisoner of war camp personnel got U.S. prisoners of the Korean War to give them tactical information, collaborate with propaganda, and agree with false confessions. Biderman stated that inflicting physical pain was not necessary to “induce compliance,” but psychological manipulations were extremely effective for that purpose. His report included what has come to be known as “Biderman’s Chart of Coercion.”
Biderman’s chart has been used by many to describe the elements that contribute to brainwashing in various situations, including partner abuse. The tactics included in his chart can be linked to other ways people abuse their partners.
In his Chart of Coercion, Biderman summarized the mechanisms for brainwashing:
- Monopolization of perception (fixes attention on immediate predicament; eliminates “undesirable” stimuli)
- Induced debilitation; exhaustion
- Occasional indulgences (provides motivation for compliance; hinders adjustment to deprivation)
- Demonstrating superiority
- Enforcing trivial demands
Not all eight elements need to be present in order for brainwashing to occur. Each element can have some power to distort reality, interfere with perception, reduce a person’s self-confidence, and garner compliance.
In a prisoner of war camp, the prisoner and jailer are enemies. Servicemen and –women are commonly trained to deal with brainwashing tactics in case they are captured by enemy forces.
In a romantic relationship, the partners are supposed to be on the same side. It is reasonable to expect love, understanding, and compassion from your partner, and to want to offer that to them also. The relationship, unfortunately, creates a vulnerability to the coercive brainwashing of a malicious or self-centered partner. It is unexpected. It can sneak up on you.