Wow. Reading stuff like this makes me feel like I’ve won the lottery by waking up.
It’s also incredibly depressing what the world thinks of us, and how quickly and easily they write us off as inherently damaged and unfixable. It’s eerily similar to the messages my mother gave me as a child, which is how I got the disorder in the first place. Irony or nah?
On the flip side, I am coming to see narcissists are much more open to awareness and change than previously thought. It took me 9 months in therapy to wake up.
It’s just I don’t think the world — including the psychiatric world — has caught up yet. When my husband told his therapist that I was diagnosed with NPD and was working on changing, she didn’t believe him at first. And she’s a professional. Sheesh.
I should note, not all professionals agree with these pessimistic outlooks on NPD. In this podcast, the therapists agree the narcissists are the fun ones to treat, while the codependents are really frustrating. Others, like Craig Malkin, author of Rethinking Narcissism, also take a more positive approach. And personally, my therapist is very supportive, positive and empathetic toward me and my recovery.
I think it’s important to find a therapist that really enjoys working with personality disorders — they are the ones leading in this field and making the biggest strides toward effective treatment, whereas others are quick to write us off.
I’ve heard too many stories of NPDers seeking treatment, only to be dropped without explanation by therapists who never even gave them a chance. In my opinion, that’s incredibly irresponsible, damaging to the patient, and should come with some sort of professional consquence.
Despite some of the pessimism, it’s interesting to see what professionals treating NPDers are thinking. You can read the article, 14 Psychologists Describe What It’s Like To Treat A Narcissistic Patient here.