"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.

"Have faith that people do their best. I don't know anyone who would eat with pigs out of a trough in a muddy barnyard if he knew that a well-prepared meal was on the table in a clean house - do you?" Greg Baer

"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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Cheating/Infidelity ( 04:11:34 SunJul 6 2003 )

Do all narcissists cheat on their partners? Those that do...is it done to punish the other...or is it just selfishness? Does a narcissist ever understand the depth of pain that this causes someone who loves them and has put their trust in them to be monagomous? How does it feel to a narcissist when confronted by this pain of the cheated upon partner? Does it just roll off as if it is no big deal and the partner should just get over it? Does a narcissist ever feel remorse for this? Or just pleasure for having "pulled one over" on their partner? Why does a narcissist cheat even when knowing it will hurt their partner? Do they just not care that it hurts another?
Thanks for your answering this.

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Re: Cheating/Infidelity ( 14:57:41 SunJul 6 2003 )

To say that all narcissists cheat on their spouses would be making an absolute statement about many people that I don't even know, and I am unable to do that. Logic would dictate that in the diversity of human beings suffering from narcissism there are those who have never cheated on their spouses. I have no idea of the percentages. That said, though, it is my personal belief that anyone who suffers from an identity disturbance is at risk for infidelity because many of us tend to define ourselves by how we are perceived in the eyes of others. Not just NPD, but in any disorder where there is a deficient self image.

I've only had a few sexually active relationships in my life, including a marriage. I never cheated on any of them outwardly, but did have private fantasies concerning other women from time to time. I felt dirty about those fantasies I had, and out of control. I feel like I could have crossed the line with my wife and actually cheated on her with another, yet that never happened. I've wondered if my shyness and lack of social abilities are all that kept me from cheating. The truth is, I don't know. I know I do have a sense of right and wrong, a conscience, and wanted to keep my sexuality "between the lines". However, I can relate to the tendency to lose oneself in the eyes of an admiring other.

Narcissism tends to be looked at in absolute, black and white terms, which leads to stereotypes, missing the human complexity and diversity that exists within the various people who suffer from it. Most of these questions, I can't answer. The answers would depend on the person, the severity of their disorder, the details of the situation itself, etc. All of us have developed a defensive "false self" to compensate for the true self, which was for one reason or another, shamed into hiding long ago. The ways used to buttress this false self are many, and a little different with each individual. We defend whenever the false front is threatened, because we fear the alternative of not having it.

Maybe others can shed more light from their experiences, if they so choose.

Thanks for writing...

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Re: Cheating/Infidelity ( 16:41:24 SunJul 6 2003 )

I also agree with the last post. It is not possible to say all NPD'ers cheat as I know loads of people who are not NPD and cheat. I've personally had many relationships and am married for the third time.

I used to flirt alot and found that if I got the response I was after then I had my narcissistic feed and left it that. This is what people do whether they have NPD or are just having a dose of healthly narcissism.

To me healthy narcisssism is experienced by most people from time to time. I discuss this with my wife and she agrees. She loves it when someone else compliments her looks or clothes. This can be considered flirting and probably is but there is nothing wrong with it. For me (pre accepting I'm NPD) I just craved it. It was just another feed in my search. I know now I had no idea what I was looking for. It was just nice.

I also think that people with NPD or low self esteem or low confidence seek others for comfort. Someone on the outside to talk to. The cheating (having a sexual relationship) is possibly to retain the closeness from the other person.

It is actually one thing about myself I'm proud of that I have never cheated physically but I can look back at past partners and see that I have cheated on them emotionally. Now all I can do is stop doing that with my wife and I am achieving this and it feels good.

Cheating is wrong and I wish it didn't happen in the world.

These are great questions we are getting and I truly hope they are helping the people asking.

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Re: Cheating/Infidelity ( 05:10:06 TueJul 8 2003 )

I have never really even dated more than one person at a time let alone cheat on anyone! It's hard enough for me to deal with even one relationship. In fact, on the rare occassions I even felt like I wanted to cheat, I took it as a warning sign that the relationship wasn't working out. However, I have never even started dating someone right after a relationship ended. In fact, I can go years between seriously dating someone.

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Re: Cheating/Infidelity ( 05:31:34 TueJul 8 2003 )

I have never developed a series romantic relationship with any person of either sex. The interest in this kind of relationship is just now beginning to stir in me. There is a part of me that sincerely hopes that it is not too late to go beyond friends and reach this level of intimacy.

My father was beyond much doubt suffering from NPD and he was loyal to a fault. Years after the divorce from my Mother he continues to talk about getting back together with her. His emotional happiness ended with the divorce.

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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