Malignant NarcIssIsts, Wizards, and the Illusions that Mess Up Our Lives


Adolph Hitler and Osama bin Laden are malignant narcissists.  Terrorists who spin grandiose illusions of a perfect world. 

The Wizard of Oz is a perfect metaphor for understanding the terrorists in our own homes.  Abusive people are narcissists.  Some are more malignant (deadly) than others.  Narcissists suck us in with their wizardly illusions.  We are charmed by their promises.  We feel lucky and blessed to be chosen. 

Yet, in time, we get hit by the tornado.  We get spun around until we’re not quite sure whether we’re in Kansas or in Oz.  Ultimately, we realize that our hero is actually an insecure wizard hiding behind a curtain.  We also discover it isn’t so easy getting away.  It isn’t as simple as clicking the heels of our magic red slippers. 


Why Aren’t Wizards Held Accountable? 

I am astounded by how frequently malignant narcissists (wizards) are able to evade accountability.  Why does it take society so long to pull back the curtain to reveal the truth?  I think it is because we all desperately want the illusion to be real.  We want to find that yellow brick road that will take us to the Emerald City. 

We want to believe we grew up in a loving home.  We want to believe the man we love won’t harm us.  We want to feel we are safe in our homes.  We want the happy ending. 


The Yellow Brick Road 

Narcissists are very persuasive, master manipulators.  Those closest to them get sucked into the illusion ~ the grand promise ~ a fairy tale that isn’t likely to have a happy ending.

We find ourselves on the yellow brick road thinking we’re off on a grand adventure.  It takes us a while to realize the journey is more fantasy than reality ~ a quixotic and futile quest ~ another empty promise.

Narcissists wear masks when in public.  They con people into believing the facade is real.  But, people who know them behind closed doors know the evil underneath those masks. 

Since narcissists need to believe they are perfect, they project their flaws onto others.  In other words, dishonest narcissists will suggest honest people are corrupt.  Their lives are like a shell game or Ponzi scheme.  A cruel narcissist will see himself as the victim rather than as a predator. 

It’s enough to drive the most solid person crazy.

NarcIssIstIc ~ the Word Says It All:  “I ~ I ~ I”

“It’s all about me” is a narcissist’s mantra.  People involved with narcissists often wonder when they’ll get their turn.  Never.  Narcissists lack empathy.  The only time they care about what’s happening in your life is when they are trying to figure out how they can manipulate your circumstances to benefit them.

What Do You Do?

Good question.  I don’t even pretend to have the answers.  Neither do the experts.  But, I’m going on a quest to try to figure it out.  I hope I don’t encounter too many wizards along the way.

Related post:  “Never Date a Narcissistic Man” by Linda Lowen.

Next: Review of  The Wizard of Oz and Other Narcissists:  Coping with the One-Way Relationship in Work, Love, and Family by Eleanor D. Payson, M.S.W.

6 responses to “Malignant NarcIssIsts, Wizards, and the Illusions that Mess Up Our Lives

  1. I’m not sure where you are in NC, but I hope you’ll look up RitaAnita Linger and Vernetta Cockerham. They are AMAZING women. . .like you.

    Sending hugs,
    Anne Caroline

  2. I just wanted to say that I appreciate your work in getting these stories out there. I have had a narcissist in my life for the last 7 years and it has been a profoundly emotionally dismantling experience for me. An experience I deeply suffered largely in a cycle of shame, embarrassment and silence. The experience was weird, unnerving and inexplicably unexitable. He drained every ounce of life out of me until I literally dragged my emotionally malnurished body to a therapist. When she first used the word “narcissistic” I thought only of the greek fable and the widely known corresponding image of the fame seeker, I had no knowledge of the clinical term and all of the overt and covert ways NPD can insidiously manifest itself; effectivly assasinating your self esteem with a sniper’s precision before you even know you’re in danger. I had no way of knowing that in this man what I thought was a bad habit was actually a cognitive deficiency; that while you can replace bad habits with good ones, asking a man with malgnant NPD to care is like asking a blind man to see. This is serious. People joke about being narcissistic but NPD can cause a tidal wave of distruction. The general public needs to be made aware of NPD, how to identify it, why not holding these people accounrable is dangerous and perhaps most importantly that emotional abuse should be held on par with physical abuse. Killing someone’s spirit is just as heinous as wounding their body … when you talk lasting effects including those that are generational, it could be considered worse. Once again I applaud you. Please keep talking please keep sharing.

  3. OMG, Mack, you have an incredibly powerful way of expressing yourself! Wow!

    If you’d like to write a guest column on NPD, please let me know. It sounds like you were lucky to find a great therapist.

    Thank you. Bless you for leaving this comment today. A narcissistic sniper put a bullet in my spirit exactly one year ago today.

    Sending hugs and thanks,
    Anne Caroline

  4. Hi Anne – I have built a worldwide movement based on recognizing there are 3 types of behavior. The 1st type is narrow self interest (and long-term narrow self interest is narcissism or in the extreme, sociopathic behavior.) I lecture to companies and to communities on how to be a good guy or an amazing woman (the 3rd type of behavior.) As you know, we all have the seeds of narcissism inside us, that’s why being a real human being starts with self-awareness 🙂

    Because you wrote such a great article, I know you’ll appreciate this little video on how to avoid a narcissist and find a good guy

  5. Pingback: Doris Buffett: Giving It All Away (Book Review + More) | Anne Caroline Drake·

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