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Are you considering exposing a Narcopath? Depending on how effective the exposure is, the effects can be massive. If such exposure results in the narcissist being abandoned by friends, as a result of which their sources of narcissistic supply dry up, narcissistic collapse is a likely end consequence.
If you are contemplating doing this, there are some important pros and cons to weigh up.
The first is the reaction of the narc themselves. Like a cornered rat, it may that they do not shrivel away quietly (which is what self-induced narcissistic collapse looks like – where they can no longer maintain the grandiosity gap). It is more likely that they will seek to destroy you – by isolating you, denigrating you, and inflict on you any other form of abuse they can muster (including physical harm).
The second is the moral implications on you. This can be a double-edged sword. Some people think it inappropriate to denounce another. Sadly, this is exactly the veil of secrecy that many of the world’s worst abusers rely on to perpetrate their terrible campaigns of abuse – Weinstein, Jimmy Savile, Nasser et al. As the world is beginning to slowly understand, often one can’t necessarily rely on the legal process to stop these. Instead, exposure is the only way to halt abuse and start the process of bringing about justice for the victims (hence the #metoo campaign).
One should also consider the implications of narcissistic collapse. This is akin to a massive, and enduring, mental breakdown from which the narc is unlikely to ever recover. Are there kids involved? What would be the impact on them of this? Triggering collapse will undoubtedly have adverse short-term implications – but you could well be saving a number of people, including their own kids, from significant and very toxic damaging narcissistic abuse in the future.
The third is one of credibility. Most people, including many psychologists, don’t understand NPD and have no idea as to the severity of NPD abuse. HG Tudor has written a thought-provoking article as to the challenge that you would need to overcome – “They Won’t Believe You“. So if you are planning it, I would strongly suggest that you ensure four things:
- That you have overwhelming evidence that you can present immediately to local society,
- That part of your plan is to similarly condemn, or at least neutralise, the flying monkeys and enablers who are also implicated in the narc’s campaign of abuse. Anticipate that they will rally to their narc’s defence without such a plan.
- That you have prepared the ground with key influencers suitably primed amongst your target audience. You will want opinion of the narcissist to switch decisively from pro to very anti swiftly in a short space of time to have the effect that you seek.
- That the victim’s plight is properly proven so that the probable vilification of the narc is balanced with sympathy for them. This will help ensure that your big reveal doesn’t rebound on you, and you be painted not as the victim but as a trouble-maker.
What you are considering has both moral and legal considerations. I would strongly recommend mapping out the worst-case scenarios on both these levels, and then working back to ensure that that you have taken steps ahead of time to mitigate each. So, for example, were your actions to result in the narc trying to sue you for libel or slander, what can you do to protect yourself from this now? You may not want to state “facts”, but express opinions. At a moral level, have you given the narc fair warning, sending a cease and desist message, that is logged and can be produced as evidence?
In my humble opinion, Narcissistic Abuse is the next big abuse scandal to break and be addressed. It follows in the wake of sex-abuse in the church, Hollywood and the like. History has a long line of similar issues – from slavery to racial discrimination, from sexual inequality to human trafficking. Unlike some of these forebears, NPD is discreet, it happens in the shadows, it’s insidious, and it is a domestic rather institutional issue. It is, however, much more widespread than people can possibly imagine. The damage it does is immeasurable. It is further complicated by the fact that many victims don’t even realise what they have been victims of until years, if not decades, after their abuse.
I would therefore ask that in addition to exposing a narc, you also do all you can to raise awareness of NPD abuse in parallel. Doing so will also help you in your quest.
I am just one of many social campaigners trying to improve an understanding of the disorder, help other victims, raise awareness and achieve the changes required in the legal and child welfare systems to protect victims and deal with abusers. We need everyone’s help. So please help spread the word. Like, upvote, share – let’s all make some noise.
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They Won’t Believe You | HG Tudor