Tag Archives: malignant narcissist

Amazon Review, Emotional Manipulation and The Human Magnet Syndrome

I decided to publish both the review and my response to it to further educate others on the topics discussed in both my book The Human Magnet Syndrome, and my work that followed it.

First, I present you the actual unedited review.  Then, my response.

THE REVIEW

“It would be an excellent book if it were not for the authors accusatory terminology and then his justification of the same. I read this book because I am currently in divorce proceedings from my -4 co-dependent and, as I once believed she was my soul mate, wanted to understand her in order to harbor no ill feelings regarding the termination of our marriage.. So okay, I am on the plus side of the authors scale. The label the uses for anyone on the plus side is “emotional abuser.” While co-dependent is widely used (although not a psychiatric diagnosis, ) to the best of my knowledge this author is the only one who uses the terminology “emotional abuser” to describe anyone on the positive side of his scale. He then uses the 3 most negatively connotative psychiatric personality disorders (borderline, narcissistic, antisocial) to further his cause.

He then goes on to write that if your insulted by being called an emotionally abusive borderline pain in the ass jerk narcissist with antisocial (possibly criminal) tendencies it is because you are impossible to fix and don’t want to look at how totally screwed up you really are and this just proves his theory. Who is the emotional abuser now?

Okay, so in fairness, let’s see how many books he can sell if he changes the name of those clustered on the negative side of his scale. How about instead of “co-dependent” he calls them….I don’t know…how about…I got it….”doormat martyrs” and parallels their condition with the dependent, histrionic, and avoidant personality disorders. I am sure that if they take offence at this it is just a defense mechanism they are using to deny their condition.”

MY RESPONSE

Many reviews like yours help me explain my work even further. So I thank you for yours.

There is a long story about the term “Emotional Manipulator” and “Emotional Manipulation,” but it will suffice to say that I never wanted that term to be used for narcissists/narcissism. The publisher did research and determined that term was “sexy” and would draw people to my seminars.  To get the gig, I reluctantly agreed to swap my term “Pathological Narcissism (ASPD, BPD, NPD and active addicts) with “Emotional Manipulator.”  I did my best, however, to delineate in The Human Magnet Sydrome book,  that “Emotional Manipulators” specifically meant what I now consider “Pathogical Narcissism.”

In addition to not liking the simple use of “Emotional Manipulators,” all  of my work before my HMS book and what followed it, clarified that codependents and narcissists can be both emotionally manipulative or an “emotional manipulator,” when understood according to the denotative sense of the term.   I even created the term subcategories to account for manipulative codependents (Active Codependency), to illustrate how this subgroup can be manipulative.   More about this category can be found in my YouTube video, Codependents Can Be Manipulative.  Understanding Active and Passive Codependency.

You will find that I have not used the “emotional manipulator term for over 4 years.”  I also dumped the term “codependent” as it was less descriptive the real problem/person than I desired and had unnecessary stigmatizing and pejorative impact on the “codependent.”  The book’s 2nd edition which is available in French and Spanish has all of these changes.  The English version won’t be available until 4/18 due to the contract i signed with the publisher.

As much as I want to sell books, I have not sold out out used terms that do match my personal and clinical experience (psychotherapist for 30 years).  As much as I am into marketing myself and my products, I will not create content that isn’t accurate, research based, or helpful to both the clientele I am writing about or the practitioners who are helping them.  Simply, my book and my other material are not created for Pathological Narcissists.  I am writing for the victims of narcissistic abuse.  I don’t even try to be open and fair to this population.  I just try to be accurate about the problem of Self-Love Deficit Disorder (formerly “codependency” and narcissistic abuse.

To your paragraph: “He then goes on to write that if your insulted…”  Clinical research hundreds of books written on NPD, ASPD, BPD, confirm that these Pathological Narcissists are resistive to seeking help because they deny having the problems others accuse them of having.  Moreover, their psychological makeup is extremely fragile; so much so, the mere suggestion that they are responsible for harm they perpetrated, triggers (activates) a narcissistic injury, which manifests in some form of aversive or punishing response.  Most reactions like these are projections, which are the placement of one’s unconscious or disassociated core shame onto the person who challenges, corrects them or tries to hold them accountable.  So, I am not sure why you consider me an “emotional abuser” by stating clinical facts that are irrefutable?

Lastly, since you identified your partner as having a (-4) Continuum of Self Value, and I assume you are correct, then you would be a (+4) narcissist.  If this is the case, then, according to my Human Magnet/Continuum of Self Theories), you have some insight into your narcissism.  Such is evidenced by your 3 star review and a fairly balanced review of my book.  Considering you read my book and subcribe to the Human Magnet Syndrome nad Continuum of Self Theory, then you must me a (+4).  If this is the case, then you clearly have some insight into your problems and could benefit from psychotherapy.

As I say repeatedly in The Human Magnet Syndrome, “it takes two to dance;” both parties share responsibility in their dysfunctional relationship.  Therefore, I hope you seek psychotherapy so that you too can experience increased levels of self-love and mental health.

Thank you again for review.

Sincerely,

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT
Clinical Care Consultants Owner
Self-Love Recovery Institute Owner
Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer
Author of The Human Magnet Syndrome

Creator of “The Codependency Cure: Recovering from Self-Love Deficit Disorder” seminar (and upcoming book)

SELF LOVE RECOVERY INSTITUTE                         

DON’T USE MY BOOK TO FIGHT A NARCISSIST! You Will Lose, I Promise.

 

Male hand holding a fake pistol with red flag isolated on white background.

DON’T USE MY BOOK TO FIGHT YOUR NARCISSIST!  You Will Lose, I Promise. 

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT

I am so grateful to the many people who have told me that my book was life-changing.  Having such a positive impact on the human condition is my teenager “gonna change the world” dream come true.  I couldn’t be happier!

My book was written to inspire and motivate people to understand their part in the dysfunctional dance they have been irresistibly drawn into their whole life.  It WAS NOT written to be used as a defensive or offensive strategy in dealing with harmful pathological narcissists (PNarcs).

The “codependent” and “narcissistic” designations in The Human Magnet Syndrome were designed to identify a very serious personal and relational problem so the reader would be motivated to get help to disconnect from it.  The book was never intended to be used as a retaliatory weapon to be used by angry, vindictive and/or controlling codependents, or what I now refer to as individuals with Self-Love Deficit Disorder (SLDD).  Similarly, it wasn’t written to be used as a countermeasure against narcissistic harm.

The mere mentioning of my book to a PNarc is almost always counterproductive, as it will ALWAYS trigger a negative reaction, no matter how much you believe otherwise. I strongly suggest to never give a copy of my book to PNarc. Never! It will always trigger a narcissistic injury and set up a dysfunctional interaction, or dance, where the PNarc has complete control and the person with Self-Love Deficit Disorder does not.   If a PNarc learns of discovers or is told that their partner is reading my book, they react in one of two manners

  1. They exhibit various forms of vindictive and indignant rage, which compels them to openly intimidate, manipulate, and consequently sabotage their partners attempt at SLDD recovery.
  2. This is the more insidious and harmful reaction, that is common with Covert and Malignant Narcissists. In this scenario, the PNarc covertly executes a plan of sabotage and dis-empowerment, which may include gas lighting, mind-manipulation, and continued brainwashing.

The latter is more dangerous, as the PNarc is allowed to maintain their victim role, while manipulating their partner to believe that they have the problems, not them. In these cases, some of my clients, in the beginning of therapy, are convinced that they are the PNarc and their significant other the SLD. Believe it or not, a few of these client’s PNarc read my book, and then gave it to their partner with the continued brainwashing narrative that they are the “codependent” and their partner the “narcissist.”

 

Plain and simple, ANY SUGGESTION THAT THE NARCISSIST IS AT FAULT will elicit a narcissistic injury.  Giving them my book, or referring to it, while telling them you are SLD or codependent, is and will cause them to react in one of two ways.  One, they will project onto you that you are the narcissist and they the codependent; or, two, they will be triggered with a narcissistic injury, and subsequently rage against you for the comment or suggestion.  You will be the target of their unmitigated fury and vitriolic criticisms, and they will punish you.

The following excerpt from the Human Magnet Syndrome exemplifies the predictable negative response that PNarcs have to my work.

“According to their verbal and/or written feedback, they feel the seminar is offensive, ill-conceived, biased and even absurd. In particular, they are quite bothered by what they perceive as prejudice. These participants hear me say that codependents are the victims and emotional manipulators are the perpetrators of their dysfunctional relationships. Nothing could be further from the truth, as the training (and this book) specifically details how both the codependent and the emotional manipulator are equally willing magnets in their dysfunctional “dance.” The codependent’s tendency to find harmful partners and remain with them cannot and should not be blamed on emotional manipulators, or vice versa.

It would appear that the severe reactions from my audience are likely products of a narcissistic injury, which occurs when the narcissistic individual felt criticized, judged or defeated.’ 

‘Anger and defensiveness are the common reactions of a narcissistically-injured emotional manipulator, as they feel offended, degraded and/or humiliated when confronted about their wrongdoings.” (Rosenberg, 2013).

Depending on the PNarc’s sub-type or diagnosis, their narcissistically prompted rage will be either delivered directly (“in your face”) or passive aggressively/covertly, which is the common strategy by Covert Narcissists and Malignant Narcissists.  The covert and passive aggressive form of the narcissistic injury is more harmful than the reactions from the garden variety overt narcissists.  They deliver maximum damage to the triggering (activating) SLD because of the invisible, secretive and manipulative nature of their counter-attack.  Examples include triangulation of family, friends or co-workers, in order to promote their victim narrative.

Sadly, and ironically, the mere fact of fighting for what SLDs most want and need— unconditional love, respect and care (LRC)[i]—results in the loss of it. Once in a relationship with a PNarc, any attempts to control or coerce[ii] the narcissist into loving, respecting and caring for the SLD are quickly offset by a dizzying array of self-serving manipulative countermeasures.  These come in various forms, depending on your PNarc’s subtype.  Unfortunately, as long as codependents fight for LRC in a manner that renders them powerless and ineffectual, they are virtually guaranteed never to receive it.

I learned 22 years ago that setting boundaries, resolving conflict, and defending myself from a PNarc was a complicated and dangerous endeavor that left me feeling worse than I felt before the ordeal.  I was surprised to learn that my repeated and unsuccessful attempts to control my PNarc’s neglectful and harmful treatment were the primary interactional components of our relationship.  My behavior was so automatic and reflexive that I was completely oblivious to it.  Adding insult to injury, the only predictable outcome of my control compulsion was feelings of shame, loneliness, anxiety, and anger.

We must learn that PNarcs are never the primary problem.  Instead, it is a SLD’s distorted and delusional belief system that compels them to keep trying to change and control their PNarc partner, who has a great deal riding on not letting you succeed.  Despite ample evidence that SLDs can rarely effectively and consistently control their Pnarcs, they blindly continue.

In conclusion, please do not use my book or other works to wage a battle against your PNarc.  In the words of George Bernard Shaw, I beseech you to Observe and Don’t Absorb your PNarc into oblivion!

I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig.
You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it!
George Bernard

Ross Rosenberg is a licensed clinical professional counselor and professional trainer. He is the author of The Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us. Contact him at info@advancedclinicaltrainers.com

Ross Rosenberg, M.Ed., LCPC, CADC, CSAT © 2016
Clinical Care Consultants Owner
Advanced Clinical Trainers Owner
Psychotherapist, Author & Professional Trainer
Author of The Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us