"Out beyond ideas of right-doing and wrong-doing there is a field. I'll meet you there." ----- Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Balkhi-Rumi, 13th century Sufi poet.

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"The Secret in healing Narcissism is not to heal it at all, but to listen to it. Narcissism is a signal that the soul is not being loved sufficiently. The greater the Narcissism, the less love being given." ~ Thomas Moore, 'Care of the Soul'.

Q. Is it really possible to heal NPD?

A. Anything is possible. You do not have to be a negative statistic on a probablity curve of people with Narcissistic Personality Disorder

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pointofNoreturn
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Re: A word on Sam Vaknin forums ( 07:58:09 SatJun 14 2003 )

Hi Athena,

Your assessment of my post was right--that was what I was getting at. Thank you for your comments.

(P.S. Do you know how I can change the "post mood"? Still haven't figured that one out.)

  
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Re: A word on Sam Vaknin forums ( 08:08:28 SatJun 14 2003 )

Hello Taran,

No, it is not a flame. As I mentioned from the outset, I am a member here who reads fairly often but has little time to post.

I am disturbed that there are people here who see any disagreement as a flame, an attack, etc. This web site is obviously open to friends and family of NPDers as well as NPDers themselves, and I was merely pointing out what an inhospitable environment this can be to those same friends and family. At first, I just overlooked the negative comments toward people who have been hurt by NPDers, but they have really seemed to pile up until it began to bother me very much, at which point I posted.

Again, I do not believe that the way to educate friends and family is to constantly negate their experiences.

  
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pointofNoreturn
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Re: A word on Sam Vaknin forums ( 08:50:03 SatJun 14 2003 )

Hi CoolBlonde,

I have really been amazed and disappointed at the rapidity with which people here have jumped to all sorts of conclusions about me with no personal knowledge. That is a real shame.

I did introduce myself awhile back but have not posted since then. I've merely read. I have not been in the "victim recovery" stage of NPD in almost two years. I have some high narcissistic traits myself but do not have full-blown NPD. I originally registered here to help and support my ex who has NPD and has now been my friend since the end of our relationship years ago. He is obviously hurting and unhappy, and I have been gently encouraging him in the direction of getting some help since that is the path he has indicated a desire to move towards himself. One reason that I don't post here more often is that I hope to mention this site to him sometime in the future, and I don't want to discuss too much personal information for fear that he will feel I have betrayed him by talking about him with others. At this point, I have already discussed with him some of what I referred to as behavioral patterns in his life that have been making him unhappy, and he acknowledges that there is a problem and that he has been working on it, although he does not seem interested in trying therapy. I have not told him that I suspect it is "NPD" and will not tell him so, as that will not help him at this point. Neither will I ever refer him to a Vaknin site. While I think they have something to offer, I don't think they are the place for people struggling with NPD.

My post was not a flame. It was an expression of disturbance at feeling that friends and family of NPDers are not welcome here. I don't sit around wallowing in "victimhood." The NPDer in my life has apologized to me many times, and I have long since accepted his apologies. I care about his well-being greatly or else I would not be here. However, I also know full well that the behavior he engaged in during our relationship was abusive. It was not only abusive to me, but it was abusive to several other people involved. The extensive depression and coinciding destructive behaviors I engaged in are now fully in the past. I choose not to dwell on them but on the healthier friendship I have with him now. But just because I choose not to dwell on them does not mean that I deny that they ever occurred.

I don't expect anyone at this forum to engage in a kind of constant self-flagellation over their past misdeeds. I can't see how that would be productive for anyone involved. What I did hope (and continue to hope) is that members here would stop repeatedly negating the experiences of those who have been hurt while in close contact with NPDers and denying their own right to heal in communities with each other.

When I first came here, I had a very positive attitude about the possibility of healing for NPDers. My main purpose was to investigate approaches to healing (i.e. what was and wasn't working) so that I would better be able to help the NPDer in my life toward a useful therapeutic technique. Instead, I have been faced with bitterness toward victims of emotional abuse on the same par with the bitterness toward NPDers that so many of you are seeing elsewhere on the Net.

Again, I did not post a flame. I did not attack any individuals, nor did I use vulgar or impolite language. I repeatedly confirmed that I acknowledge the suffering of NPDers (and really all those with personality and other clinical disorders). If you or others feel that dissent is unwelcome here, then perhaps you should ask the moderator to make this a closed web site for NPDers only. As it is, an environment that is open but hostile to non-NPDers isn't doing anyone any favors, I don't think.

  
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pointofNoreturn
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Re: A word on Sam Vaknin forums ( 09:32:04 SatJun 14 2003 )

For the "Unregistered Guest" who answered my post:

Thanks for your support as well as for the additional information on Vaknin forums which I was previously unaware of. :thankyou:

  
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Re: A word on Sam Vaknin forums ( 10:25:40 SatJun 14 2003 )

Hi TCBrown,

Let me start by saying that I think you have a very good forum here and encourage you to keep it up. I find most of your posts very insightful.

However, I have to disagree with some of your comments to me:

"I think that most of us DO realize that we have hurt other people, or else we wouldn't be here. Just because we don't talk about it all the time or nail ourselves to a cross like Vaknin doesn't mean we aren't aware of it. There are a lot of shame issues involved."

As I said to others and will repeat, I don't expect and wouldn't want to see constant self-flagellation, and I never said I did. What I said in my original post was that I hoped to see less attacking attitudes toward victims and less denial of the emotional trauma that such people have endured. This does not translate into sitting around beating oneself up all the time for past actions, and I gave no indication that it should. It translates into acknowledging that yes, people do get hurt by NPDers and leaving it at that. It even wouldn't have bothered me if the majority of posters here had said to others, "Hey, this is a forum for NPDers only, so if you're a friend, family member, or someone else who knows an NPDer but is not NPD yourself, please do not post here." It is entirely your prerogative if you want to have a site that is for NPDers only. However, what I see instead is insults and attacks directed toward people who have suffered along with NPDers due to their actions.

"I couldn't agree more. It simply is not realistic for anyone to expect us to sit around and discuss how evil and how sorry we are for doing what we have done to others."

See above. I never said anything even close to that. I said that I was disappointed in and upset by attacks against those who have suffered from the actions of NPDers and the total denial of their right to have a healing place for themselves. I did not say that NPDers should sit around talking about what horrible people they are.

"Those of us with NPD are most definitely victims of abuse, to the point where we have been more or less permanently damaged, and we were victimized at a time in our lives when there was no escape except to retreat into a fantasy world. Many of us were victimized by NPD parents. We didn't put ourselves into the situation, and we couldn't move out, or get a divorce from our parents, unlike most of our so-called "victims".

This is a very important message that everyone who feels they are a victim needs to read a couple of times. The emotional flows here and it cuts to a deep truth about NPD. "

I will not deny that trauma experienced during childhood (especially from parenthood) is more damaging than trauma experienced in adulthood. But that doesn't mean that trauma experienced in young adulthood is not also damaging, even if not in the fundamental way that it is damaging to a young child.

I will also note that I find it very disappointing how people here have jumped to tell me what I do and do not understand about childhood abuse issues as though they knew anything about my past from one post. Just because someone did not develop NPD themselves is no reason to assume that they have no experience with childhood abuse. Not everyone with a difficult childhood develops the same sort of disorder.

"We have an open wound that we are trying to heal. MORE ABUSE WILL NOT HELP US TO HEAL IT. WE NEED TO FEEL SAFE HERE in order to work on our issues. This is something that those who are in "victim" mode do not understand.

This says it perfectly and it is very unfortunate that people who complain about our lack of empathy or inability to feel things do not comprehend this realtiy."

I did not say anything abusive to anyone. I encouraged you guys not to beat up on people who have been hurt by the actions of NPDers. I do not see how there is anything abusive in that. Neither do I see how what I said could possibly be construed as lack of empathy. I repeated several times that NPDers suffer, that they are people not monsters, that they have had difficult childhoods, etc. I don't see how asking you all to cease making blanket insults about people who have been hurt by the behavior of other NPDers is any kind of lack of empathy.

"Hatred and prejudice aganist those of us with this disorder is NOT healing and will not be tolerated, period, end of discussion on this point. I will also say that there are other factors which can sabotage our healing process which might not have anything to do with victims or the wider NPD issue. If you are here to play games and engage in any sabotage of anyone's healing then I will be very honest and say you are in the wrong place."

Quote me a place in my original post where you see hatred or prejudice. I said nothing hateful or prejudiced. In fact, I went out of my way to demonstrate that I could see the NPDer's side of the issue, as well.

I have already replied to another member regarding why I am here (as well as to yourself and the others a few days after I signed on as a member). I wrote this particular post because I would like to continue reading about ways to be helpful and encouraging to a very troubled friend without constantly having to see insults, attacks, and namecalling directed at people who have been hurt by NPDers. Unlike so many true "flames" that I see here, which mostly come from unregistered guests and feature derogatory comments such as, "People with NPD can't heal" or "All you people do is pat each other on the back," I wrote a thoughtful post explaining what I thought (and still think) is a misconception of the purpose of support forums and the position of emotional abuse victims. I also urged the more active members of this forum to realize that these people have been through pain, not unlike yourselves, and that a more productive way to spread information about healing would be to reach out to these people, to say, "Hey, we are living proof that NPDers can heal. As long as you refrain from posting flames, please stick around and read about what we're doing in this forum," rather than, "You people with your phoney victim mentality are all a bunch of mindless cult followers" and the like. I did not insult anyone, I did not speak vulgarly or inappropriately. I do not see how anything I said could be construed as hateful.

As I have said before, I came here with a positive mentality toward the concept of healing. The response that a number of people here have given to a post that was not "hateful," "prejudiced," insulting or in any way abusive simply because I disagreed with a particular aspect of communication on this board has been very disturbing to me indeed. If you wish to block me from your site as you mentioned, it is certainly your prerogative to do so as moderator. I came here primarily to read about alternative therapies for my friend. At this point, I can't say that I am eager to participate further anyway since dissent, no matter how gently worded, seems to be responded to with personal attack or with assumptions about the character of the author that are entirely unfounded. I continue to stand by my original post along with the opinion that promoting understanding of NPD is best done by an sympathetic attitude toward all, not just victims and not just NPDers.

I do, however, wish you the best of luck with your board and in your own healing journey.





  
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CoolBlonde
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Re: A word on Sam Vaknin forums ( 11:11:34 SatJun 14 2003 )

Don't you get it? This is NOT about YOU. This forum is first and foremost for OUR recovery. Hopefully, as we recover, it will help friends and family as well. I am amazed at the complete lack of empathy exhibited by someone who obviously likes to think of themself as normal. You are obviously speaking from your mind and not your heart. You could not possibly empathize with us in this state. This is the same thing you accuse us of .

Do you NEED us to relate specific incidents to understand? I could elaborate on the specific types of abuse I have dealt with as a child, but I suspect that it would not make much difference here. The bottom line is, again, THE VICTIMIZATION THAT WE HAVE SUFFERED THAT MADE US THE WAY WE ARE, IS FAR WORSE THAN ANY THAN YOU HAVE SUFFERED AS AN ADULT , BECAUSE WE, AS CHILDREN, COULD NOT GET AWAY FROM THE ABUSE --- YOU COULD. PERIOD. END OF STORY. What part of this don't you understand? Are you trying to say that the abuse a child endures is less significant than any that YOU endure? Quite Narcissistic of you, I'd say. I'd hate to be one of your kids.

If you don't understand this, you should go back to the Vaknin forums and continue to STROKE his ego. That is what you are doing there. If you were smart, you might ask him to pay you for this. Now go back and cry to your victim friends and wallow in your misery. But we will not allow you to sabotage our recovery.



  
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Re: A word on Sam Vaknin forums ( 12:36:43 SatJun 14 2003 )

CoolBlonde's point about the lacky of empathy expressed by pointofnoreturn and by many others is huge. As was mentioned by a regular member of this community who considers herself to be a victim those forums are full of people who are themselves narcissistic. Many others have commented without solitication on my part on the unhealthy environment of Sam Vaknin influenced Vaknin forums. The complete lack of empathy expressed in these forums toward the people with NPD is at best sickening and at worst a continuation of the extreme levels of hate and prejudice toward people with NPD.

Once again CoolBlonde touches upon a major point when she asks if Pointofnoreturn gets that this is not about her, it is about OUR healing. I will saying to pointofnoreturn, notalotofpity,. the guest in this forum and anyone else tempted to respond that you will never dictate the dialogue or level of support in this forum. There have been previous efforts at developing this level of support for those of us with NPD that have been sabotaged. That will not be allowed to happen here. It is sad but it appears that we may well have to restrict the level of guest and certain member participation. :eagerlyevil: It is my role to keep this forum safe for those with NPD to do some very painful healing and I will do everything to make sure that happens.

Sam Vaknin by his own admission is a very sick man. I beg to differ with anyone who suggests his theories are winning acceptance in mainstream mental health communities. There has always been a segment of the mental health community who did not believe NPD was suitable for treatment. That number is shrinking (so to speak) by the year and it is critical that we do not allow the insanity which has been sprayed across the net to influence this process in a negative way. Truthfully I am among those who do not believe Vaknin is NPD. The cult is real, though I find it amazing that even people so obssesed with wanting to be a victim are being held emotional hostage by a confessed pathological liar, without a degree in psychology who believes he is no closer to healing now then he was seven years ago. Stop and think about this for a while and perhaps reality will set in.

As for our guest who commented on the thin skinned of narcissists. This amounts to a flame and one which is based only somewhat on reality. Regardless it is not welcome here. Guest posting is a privilege and one which you will lose with future flames. Take a good long look at the boards that pass as support forums and you will get an idea of what it means to be thin skinned. It has been noted several times over in this thread that someone with npd would not be allowed to start a defense of themselves (kind of the 180 degree turn of this thread in one of those forums) . It would be deleted and the user banned. This is not theory it has indeed happened time and time again.

It is very interesting to me see how people such as athena, jimmie, hirmor and some of the others who are regulars in the compassionate family/friends forum relate to those with NPD compared to what is routinely found in the so-called victims forums. Contrary to what some think it is very possible for those with npd to co-exist with family and friends in one forum. It is happening here very nicely thank you very much. The problems we have had with family and friends are from those in denial about their own role in relationships and lost in their world of victimization. I suggest learning people such as these in the family forum as they have a lot to offer.

I have nothing against self-support groups that are legitimate. Admittedly some are far more effective then are others, but my attitude it whatever works. However I do not believe what exists currently in Vaknin groups even comes remotely close to being support, self or otherwise. It is a very, very unhealty enviornment which is breeding hatred, prejudice, discrimination, intolerance and fear. What you see in these forums commenting on experiences with Vaknin is only the tip of the iceberg. Many members of this forum and others with years of personal experience write me almost every day with new horror stories of what they have experienced there. I actually think it is a good sign that some are uncomfortable with hearing about the reality of the experiences of those of us with npd in these so-called victims support forums. That is one reason why I allow guests to read some forums. I think it is good for you if to see some of this pain. One day it might even begin to register, let's say I hope so.

It is not the place of pointofnoreturn to determine if this thread is regarded as flame by those with NPD. I will
Enough said. This forum is not set up to be a debate forum about Sam Vaknin or a place for people to do nothing but moan and feel sorry for themselves for the way they believe they have been treated. This is a support forum for those of us with npd, family and friends who believe and support healing, period, end of discussion. This thread has nothing to do with the question of support and therefore it is being locked. (after further review it has been re-opened :claphands: ) Future threads started on this subject will be locked as soon as I find them and the poster will be held accountable.





[2 edits; Last edit by TcBrown at 12:51:40 Sat Jun 14 2003]



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You do not need to be loved, not at the cost of yourself. The single relationship that is truly central and crucial in a life is the relationship to the self . .. Of all the people you will know in a lifetime , you are the only one you will never lose.

~ Jo Courdt

 
 
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Accountability: Re-visiting the issue of Sam Vaknin and Related forums ( 20:25:47 FriJun 27 2003 )

"The University is oriented to those individuals not seeking licenses or credentials requiring accredited degrees. Our programs are not designed to meet any established requirements by private or professional associations. If a license or a credential is desired, a check should be made of state, federal, association, and credential requirements before applying.
Pacific Western University has not sought membership in any independent accrediting association." ~ Statement on the Pacific Western web site,
PWU web site


Those of you who are not familiar with Sam Vaknin's biography will recognize Pacific Western has the school where he received his Ph.D. in Philosophy. It is not clear from what I have seen on Sam's resume exactly where he received his undergrad degrees. If someone could post that information I think it would be seen as very helpful to many people who are attempting to verify his educational credentials. A common enough action when attempting to determine if someone qualifies as an expert on a given topic.

Evidently the undergrad work he (Sam) did do was focused on primairly on economics. If I understand correctly Sam's certificate in counseling was issued through an on-line school. I struggle to understand how one can receive a meaningful certificate in counseling through an on-line school.

None of this is new. Sam has it all over the web on the biography he seems so proud of. My understanding is that it has been mentioned on the suite, but it was forgotten or whatever as people come and people go.

I come from a family which puts a high empahsis on education (my grandfather was an economics prof at Penn and my uncle was a geology prof at a variety of schools) I do not yet have an advanced degree but it is something I hope to accomplish. Even so I do not regard it has mandatory to have a Ph.D. in order to talk about healing mental illness. It is very possible for lay people to be very influencial in the healing process, as often times they are able to escape the boxed thinking of the professionals. There is a lot of exciting work around NPD being done in the holistic or alternative fields. Most of these people do not have PhD.'s in any field from anywhere, yet there work is making a positive difference in the lives of many.

The real question here is accountability. Many of the so-called victim community insist on calling Sam Dr. Vaknin and regarding him as an expert on NPD. They point toward his self-published book and endless writings across the internet. None of which qualifies him as an expert, not in my book. Certainly he does not have a doctorate in psychology (accredited school or otherwise).

Personally I see a man who is self-diagnosed as NPD. Many have questioned the accuracy of this dx. He seems to brag he is no better today than he is in 1996. He confesses to being a pathological liar. Whether intentional or otherwise he has significantly blurred the lines between Narcissism, NPD and Psychopathology (Despite what some believe there is more than a coin flip of difference between these scientific terms).

Most people agree that accountability is an important part of healing NPD. Accountability can mean different things to different people. I think it is very important to have accountability about credentials when we talk about those who are very active in the NPD debate. In my mind Sam Vaknin needs to be accountable not only for being honest about his education credentials, he also needs to be held accountable for what I believe is serious damage to people who felt the sting of his message of hate.

I do not believe Sam Vaknin's style message or style is the appropriate message to send out to either the so-called victims of narcissism or those suffering from NPD. I have studied many theories of psychology and I have never come across anything quite like we see coming from Sam. I will say this is a free world and Sam is entitled to be heard. Equally true is the right for others to strongly disagree.

I do not believe it is appropriate to try and silence Sam or his followers (cult members). If people would think for themselves and take the time to understand NPD I believe they will eventually move away from the message that is being offered by Sam. This suggests the greatest degree of accountability rests within each of us. We can either feed a message of hate or we can look at and acknowledge the healing that is going on around us. I sincerely hope that one day soon Sam lets go of his anti-NPD campaign and turns his focus to healing. Regardless of that my focus will remain unchanged. I have my own healing work to complete and I'm grateful for those I've met along the way.

:peace:








---
You do not need to be loved, not at the cost of yourself. The single relationship that is truly central and crucial in a life is the relationship to the self . .. Of all the people you will know in a lifetime , you are the only one you will never lose.

~ Jo Courdt

 
 
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Re: Accountability: Re-visiting the issue of Sam Vaknin and Related forums ( 14:57:34 SatJun 28 2003 )

Holy sh-t! This man has even less credibility than I thought, which is saying something because I put his credibility before this somewhere near the sewer. As far as I'm concerned all the alleged research is out the window. This man is a disgrace and has done so much to hurt others. I hope this message finally gets through to these people.:rolleyes:

  
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Re: A word on Sam Vaknin forums ( 15:20:32 MonJun 30 2003 )

I suppose I should get back to work but I wanted to thank you for calling attention to what I think calls into question everything that has ever been written about the victim movement around NPD. In my mind everything based around Vaknin has zero credibility. Let's stop playing the game of calling him Dr. Vaknin.

  
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