This blog is now over a year old, but until two weeks ago, I wasn’t sure what was wrong with me. I suspected though, from the day I began this blog.
Now I finally know for sure.
My name is Lauren, and I am a covert narcissist.
It was hard to write this. It’s the hardest thing I ever had to write. But it’s time to out myself. What other choice is there?
I have NPD (the covert, vulnerable form).
I also have BPD, C-PTSD, Avoidant PD, SAD (seasonal affective disorder) and GAD (generalized anxiety disorder). I’m an extremely introverted INFJ and prone to periodic black depressions, occasional dissociative episodes, panic attacks, and debilitating feelings of emptiness.
I’m a mess.
Before you hit the backspace key, please let me explain.
My therapist, who hates labels and took a long time to come to this conclusion (and even laughed at me when I first told him what I suspected over a year ago) finally agrees with me about the diagnosis. However, he also believes I’m not high on the spectrum (I only *just* qualify). He has also told me he believes I am at heart an empath. We are working hard together to re-claim those abilities (as a child I was definitely an empath), and it’s beginning to bear some small fruit. I still have a long way to go, but being self aware and practicing mindfulness helps me immensely. I do not want to be this way anymore; have not wanted to be this way since I began this blog (started because I self diagnosed as a covert narcissist). Well, I was right.
I wrote a guest post “outing myself” two weeks ago, on Healing From NPD’s blog (which I wrote about in earlier posts). I’ve been terrified of sharing it here though, because of how stigmatized this disorder is, but mostly because I’m afraid of being abandoned or negatively judged (something borderlines and narcissists are both terrified of) or even mobbed. But why should I be so afraid? People who would judge me negatively, stop reading my blog, and not give me a chance aren’t the sort of people I’d want to stick around anyway. I don’t think my real friends will abandon me.
So far, I have shared the post I’m about to link to with two other people in private emails, and both were very supportive and did not judge me for it. Since one of my passions is the de-stigmatization of Cluster B disorders and a more nuanced, realistic view of them, I think “coming out” actually helps my case.
Also, I started this blog because I believed I had NPD, but at that time it was only self-diagnosed. Over time, I began to deny I had it at all (especially because of my therapist’s doubts and reluctance to give me such a label) but deep down, I still knew I did. There’s no denying or sugar-coating it anymore.
I developed the narcissism as a self-protective overlay over the overwhelming and turbulent emotions of BPD. I was never aware I was doing this so it was never a choice, as some believe. It was easy enough to admit I have BPD, but NPD is a whole ‘nother ball of wax and much more vilified. Admitting you are one is scary as hell.
But I feel like not admitting the truth would be dishonest. This is probably the hardest blog post I’ve ever had to write, but I know I’ll feel better when it’s over and done with.
So, here it is: the article I wrote two weeks ago, describing my entire journey, from a newly No Contact narcissistic abuse victim (which I am!) to a self aware covert narcissist who desperately wants to heal. It was narcissistic abuse that made me this way. It’s only by the grace of God I didn’t become malignant or incapable of seeing myself the way I am (or believing it’s a good thing to be – it’s definitely not).
I hope you read the whole thing with an open mind and try not to judge.
I’m relieved but also scared. Once I hit the publish button, there’s no going back.
Some of you who are empaths or just good at putting two and two together might have guessed I was working up to something like this.
But I feel like this is the wisest choice and in the long run, the one that will be of the most help to others as well as myself.
Finally, for those of you who opt to continue reading this blog and following my journey to wellness (I won’t ever give up), thank you! Your support means everything to me and encourages me to keep going, no matter what.
Here’s a little about all the diagnostic confusion that preceded my writing this new About Me page: