100 thoughts on “Narcissists don’t lack empathy – they just choose not to use it

  1. Thanks for the video. The term "empathy" isn't clearly defined in the literature, such that it can functionally, and confusingly, often embodies polar opposites. I appreciate that you're trying to get at this. I'd recommend reading the work on "theory of mind," which anthropologists think is what distinguishes other primates from us. A human child by about 3-years old begins to develop theory of mind, whereas adult upper primates never do. For example, Michael Corleone, and most sociopaths, have great theory of mind–they can coldly imagine and anticipate the subjective experience of another. In fact, a lot of mental distress, particularly of CPTSD (narc abuse survivors) comes from over-projecting theory of mind–of imagining someone else's inner experience and then reacting to that imagination rather than the real signals of that person, who may just be having a bad day or is preoccupied with something else. Theory of mind is different from the compassion one feels for another''s suffering, yet both are often referred to as "empathy." Some people have theorized that Asperger's syndrome sufferers have limited theory of mind but a surplus of empathy–they're oblivious to hurting others but when they realize that they have, they're really upset. Not to be simplistic, but one could create a quick graph of theory of mind and compassion and locate a lot of DSM Axis II issues on it (loathe as I am to use the DSM). High theory of mind, high compassion? An amazingly sensitive person–low theory of mind, low compassion–an insensitive jerk. High theory of mind, low compassion–sociopath at worst. Low theory of mind, high compassion–a lot of sufferers of narc abuse and more prominent in women. Just a thought……

  2. Awesome explanation. I wish everyone that has dealt with this issue could go back in time… Things would be much different now that I KNOW. That you Doctor!!!

  3. Not at all attempting to be discriminatory–Do you notice certain propensities in certain cultures to not believe or express respect for women in general, or vice versa? One of my therapists, who is the same nationality as my husband, mentioned her thesis was about male superiority in her culture and when and how it can change into becoming more of an equality situation between male and female. I am interested in your insights about this. I realize it is a touchy subject, but do think it is note-worthy. I have been in relationships with different races, but I do feel the cultural beliefs play a part in how these people (self included) view the opposite sex and their role in the family.

  4. Too much gullible empathy is not good either, I caught myself empathising with someone who might be a psychopath lacking complete empathy and out there to destroy others for fun. I think I am the one who needs therapy.

  5. OMG Dr. Ramani, I’ve been struggling for so long with the question: does he know what he did to me? Upon reading research originally, I found it impossible to believe that I was supposed to accept he wasn’t “responsible” for his behavior. He knows what he did. He knew what he was doing the whole time. He enjoyed it, right? I want to hear more about that wash of satisfaction they get. And who is it that they are ever genuine with? Did he get together with his narc dad and laugh about how weak their wives were? I want to understand.

  6. Other specialists in this subject say that in a narc's very early childhood, if they weren't placed on a pedistal as demi-gods, that on the opposite end, they were emotionally abused and somehow never really developed that part of the brain that is about empathy. That underdeveloped part of them was a coping mechanism which they never grew out of. I tend to agree strongly with this. I notice in my husband that the sadness he may show because of a movie, or what another may have lived through is simply triggering a memory that he can identify with. The 'empathy' shown is never about the other but about himself, really. And, he has certainly learned how to pretend empathy. It is cognitive empathy, like others mentioned and is used solely to make themselves look good. It is never sincere. Recently,, listening to him talk about his mother and asking key questions, I strongly suspect his mother was a narcissist too. He was the black sheep and his older sister was the Golden Child. He was sent off at 9 yo to an internat (boarding school) and when older sent out of the country to another. He was humiliated in front of others at a very young age of 3 or 4. An episode he never forgot. I am convinced this is the point where he went into a coping mechanism.

  7. My sibling became even worse when I became disabled. He didn’t care if I couldn’t move! He still demanded I do things for him I couldn’t do. I couldn’t believe it. If you think they’ll care when you’re at your very worst and you’re lying on the couch unable to care for yourself, they will not! He demanded I’d babysit and run his errands. He discarded me and when I blocked him had the audacity to complain about how I didn’t want anymore contact. He lies and twists everything to look like a victim. 36 years of this constant pain. He made me sick. Literally. I’m getting treatment for my several illnesses and doing much better now. I’ll never open contact with such a venomous person again.

  8. they are actors, they know how to react (manipulation or controlling). cognitive empathy yes !but emotional I didn't see at all. their moral belief system is absent to live in a normal relationship or community, professional users only to their own advantage.

  9. What I saw when dealing with my mother was this. She would do something really crappy to someone, and she would feel the shame of it, but then the pride would rise up and put a lid on the shame. Her narcissism is a defense against receiving shameful feelings. This is why they are so skillful at projecting and twisting words, and never apologize. Apologising would require acknowledgement of wrong doing therefore absorbing the shame. The whole disorder is about avoiding shame . They are running from the feelings of worthlessness 24/7. They feel empathy, they just ignore it, TRUTH!

  10. I think a psychopath is worse because they could kill you and not feel anything. What if they decide its more beneficial to them for you to die?

  11. I always said they have empathy but they use it in the most vicious ways. To me more evil than if they had not at all. They would not be able to love bomb as well as they do. It is their evil at its most dangerous. TY for your video.

  12. I used to work with autistic children, who are also often described as "lacking empathy" but in many ways they are the opposite of a narcissist or sociopath. Autistic people lack social awareness and often need help self-reflecting on how their actions impact others. However, after you help them understand what they did that was hurtful or inconsiderate, they usually have a self-motivation to work on it. They might have trouble understanding your feelings, but your feelings still matter. While a narcissist love bombs to get you on their side, then treats you like garbage the rest of the time, an autistic person might need a kind of "down payment" of communication and patience, but that can pay off as a healthy, genuine relationship. When it comes to loyalty, compassion, and consideration, autistic people are as willing to give it as anybody else. Provided, of course, that you explain what you need, rather than wait around for them to "just get it already."

    As a result, before any conversation about who or who does not "lack empathy," I ask for some definition of terms. In any given conversation, people might mean "social skills" or "social awareness" or "a core ethical sense that other people have feelings and those feelings matter." We group all these things together as "empathy," but they don't always go together.

  13. When I heard “stranger empathy” that’s my husband all the way. It made him look so good too. He’d make sure some random gay guy didn’t get beat up but beat the shit out of me…. weird.
    I had to shut off my social media on FB to not watch him get a new job where he lives (5 hours away.) Or who he’s fucking or contacting me and telling me to die, suicide. It’s old. If he doesn’t want me get on that Divorce.

    The thoughts about pregnancy issues with women are also very important. I met him weeks before a hysterectomy. When we broke up I heard more “get lucky , make babies.” He said so much shit to me about self hatred. Offered to take me up on a hill and let me suicide myself in E Germany.

    Running around in Marathon Key in Florida. Watch your ass ladies….. he’s a total scumbag but I feel for it. Hes a shape-changer and I hope his Reptilian sex trafficking ass sees my comment too

  14. Empathy was used against them as children so they learned that empathy is a weakness, and now they repeat to others what they experiences as child, abuse people who show empathy as they see empathetic people weak and dumb who deserve to be abused because afterall, empathy is a weakness as they learned from their childhood. -Lauri

  15. Absolute truth. I have two in my FOO. One that only has empathy for flying monkeys or in situations where it benefits them. The other fakes empathy for a public show. In my case radical acceptance came when I realized what you said was true…they really DO NOT care about my thoughts or feelings. AT ALL. Even my hubby said it. It’s part of what has frustrated him since we got married 30+ years ago. It’s been hard for him to stand by and watch me be invalidated and belittled over and over and over. When I woke up a few months ago I realized part of my “acceptance” was to finally just walk away and work on me. My daughter told me something very wise. She said if I never see them again that it’s their choice. They have made horrible choices for decades by the way they have manipulated, controlled, and abused. And those choices are theirs to live or to die with. And that’s totally on them, not on me. She is right. God knows I have begged, pleaded, and talked myself blue in the face for over forty years trying to be loved and accepted in my own family. I just had to finally own it and realize it’s never gonna happen. Time to move on.
    🚪👈🏼 👋🏼✌🏼

  16. I think narcissists were manipulated and punished in the same way when they were kids and they don't really understand the mechanics of love. If you were raised by a narcissist it's completely understandable that the wiring would be all screwed up. I came from a narcissistic family and when I was very small I played along. My mother would pit us siblings against each other and as I recall before the age of ten I did the same thing. Eventually the game shifted and I became more rebellious and thus the primary scapegoat, and I realized that it got me nothing to just dog pile on my sisters at every opportunity. As I got older I tried to stick up for them but by then it was a deeply entrenched power play game. By then they just saw empathy as a sign of weakness. So if I had to take a guess, I'd say the adult narcissist is still playing the game they were taught as a kid, suck up to the narcissistic parent who will never give you love but will pretend if the right cards are played. So I think they honestly don't believe in love, even if they feel twinges of it from time to time. At the end of the day, warm feelings are an illusion to them that can't be trusted. Love and empathy is a game for suckers. And I think when they get confused by their own feelings it makes them angry. For me the real diagnostic test would be if they saw through and rebelled against their narcissistic parent in a significant way. One of my sisters would admit from time to time the dysfunction of my family, but only if she were the designated scapegoat at the time. If I were the scapegoat, everything was fine and I was the problem. Gee, I wonder where she learned that?

  17. You can have empathy for someone and walk on by like you said maybe to give them that space, but if you stop and ask if they are ok, that is compassion. Campassion is empathy in action. So maybe what narcicists don't have is compassion. Just a thought 😉

  18. I felt like my narcissist ex also had ADHD- he’d get bored easily, hurt my feelings because he didn’t care and use me for fresh narcissistic supply again somewhere down the line. The heart felt sorries, re-love bombing phase, promises of a deeper connection this time- only to lose interest again. He’d play on my empty and narrate the troubles in his life so instead of me being hurt and rejected it became about him looking for reassurance. I always believed I could fix him. He used to come to my place when I had my friends over and be cruel to me in front of them. I did think it was like adhd where the novelty would just wear off and he’d become habituated and see me like an object- this deep reflection led me into other abusive relationships- thank you dr Ramani for helping me break my cycle. You’re so beautiful

  19. 💡 Thank you – you have confirmed a sneaking suspicion. They have weaponized language and our best human emotions the better to play targets, then blame the targets for being too gullible too naive too trusting; our fault for being so dumb. If not stopped soon, this epidemic of mean behavior will destroy society. Not bode well when we are feeling forced to adopt narcissist behavior or be eaten by them again and again and again, trust betrayed, not relationships anymore, but only deal-making transactions, valued for how much can be "gotten", what the target be "taken for". Jobs no longer go to people, they go to the "cheapest labor". More and more, instead of trust returned , it's just another case of falling for 'gotcha!' setup that benefits the monster at the unfair expense of the resource. We are eyed as economic resources, not individual human beings. The end of our civilization is a foregone conclusion if the movers and shakers – largely the source of the problem – don't figure it out quickly and collectively redirect their priorities. We are rewarding the behaviors that attain success; but we chose the getting of piles of fiat debt and the ability to get others to stuff for you as the definition of success so of course at this point in the game, we have highly skilled qualified psychopaths running and managing the show, and lowly humans are just props to move about the stage.

  20. thank you so much, Dr. Ramani, for these videos. I am long out of the relationship with my narcissistic adoptive parents and adoptive brother (parents dead and brother in jail) but now I understand the hurtful things that went on because of your videos. Many thanks to you

  21. They have empathy. They choose who to show empathy to. The reason I know this, is because my narc "mom" has made her two grandsons (my sister's boys) her golden children. She showers them with love, money, attention and EMPATHY!

  22. I think maybe the narcissists are suppressing their unwanted unbearable emotional responses. Like for example they have a huge sense of inferiority, and it is locked so deep in unconsciousness because they feel they are not able to survive it. Then they can not get rid of it, can not kill a part of themselves. So it is kind of compulsion to induce it in other people to make sure the narcissists are still alive and in control. Maybe it is like training routine. And maybe the narcissists would be happy to spread joy and inspiration they just have so much shame and fear. So when they do not feel what other people feel, it is like a superpower to them. How do you like this idea?

  23. Oh no. I might be a narcissist then. I'm pretty good at reading people and feeling their emotions. I'm a highly sensitive person but I just don't care about people. It's scary. Am I a monster? I want to be loved but I don't love people 🙁

  24. You nailed it. Yes. They weaponize empathy.

    I have definitely seen cases in my personal life where the narcissist experienced a slight from one person and lashed out at another. An example… The Narc was called to his boss’ office and the boss said the Narc was underperforming at work and needed to step it up. The Narc KNEW he was underperforming. He had even been bragging about it. He was hurt and angry and turned that on his partner. Maybe he wanted her to feel as much pain as he was feeling? And, of course, his own pain was out of proportion to the situation. He knew he was slacking off and should have expected that he wouldn’t get away with that forever. Yet, he appeared to be in deep pain that went away when he caused his partner to be in even deeper pain through inflicting unspeakable abuse.

  25. If everything about them is to have control and power over others controlling their empathy is logically the first thing to be done. Controlled empathy thus makes them have the upper hand over people they make weak through manipulation. They're weak themselves deep down so they employ controlled empathy as defense mechanism to appear what they are not and what they don't have guts to be, i.e. strong and mature thriving empathetic people

  26. I think regardless of their ability to have empathy, everyone sets an arbitrary limit to how much they actively care for others, often depending on the level of proximity and the "cost" of doing so.
    In a nutshell, even if you're able to relate and understand another human's feelings, most people wouldn't throw themselves under a bus for a stranger, but they would for their child or a dear relative. Where you place that limit varies greatly from a person to another. It often takes the form a gradient spanning from friends, coworkers, accointances… and with it, a gradient of acts with various degrees of "cost" or "sacrifice" you would be willing to do, depending on how close you feel to the person…

    It is healthy to have a certain limit to how much you are willing to give/sacrifice/do/worry, and for whom. It's basic self preservation.

    But I believe for narcissists, this line is pretty sharp, and the area it defines is pretty much a skintight suit on them. They do understand emotions and may even be able to relate if they try. The thing is they don't try. Because everybody is off limits when it comes to their compassion. Everybody gets the stranger treatment, even people who are de facto close to them, because no amount of "cost" is tolerable to them. They can agree to it sometimes, but they're the toughest bargainers: they'll only do it if the cost is minimal, or as an investment because they foresee potential gains, it's never for the other's sake entirely.

    A lot of those occasional displays of empathy are mostly for the show, and/or to be used as leverage in future arguments/bargains. I find an interesting indicator is how much that line shifts depending on whether there are witnesses, or how much they display and talk about their compassionate acts.

  27. Just got your new book today; and already reading!! 🙂 Thank you for your fantastic work..!! The tagline: "Don't you know……." did ring a bell. Here it is, a brilliant song by MK, 1991…. : www.youtube.com/watch?v=VBhJamHfNi8

  28. The problem I have now is being guarded with everyone. I keep to myself and am suspicious of motivations. Feeling like I need intense therapy to find my way back to myself.

  29. Narcs can be FULL of empathy when they are in a setting where there are trying to get supply by giving the appearance of being virtuous.
    My ex would be full of empathy and sympathy for people when she thought others were watching and it made her look good and then turn right around and treat me like garbage almost is the same breath.

  30. I do have two question about this over, sometimes they do have empathy sometimes they don't…

    1 Can it just be as simple as they can only relate to you over certain similar things you have gone through, that, they have too, otherwise its not in their nature to care or appear to be that way over other things they have no idea what it's like

    Or, 2, they lean to harden and pull back on their emotions to not feel sorry for this other person, this person has been punished at work because they should have followed company's lines. The boss or a manager can't think about your feelings when telling you off for your mistakes that you personally, have bee .. made when you you but on the other hand, if you request time off for a gfadxy

  31. I can’t help but thinking that I’m the German woman Dr. Ramini is talking about. That was my question for her. Thank you so much for answering. This videos help me so much to understand what is going on with narcissistic people and process everything what happened. It’s good to know how to react if you’re dealing with narcissist it’s even better for the soul to understand why they act the way they act. Understanding was and still is healing for me.

  32. This is good. Some tough truths. It is absolutely hard to accept that some people really could just care less and don't give a hoot. That they have empathy but use it only when they feel like it.

  33. I have a spouse with ADHD. He used to struggle quite a bit with sustaining empathic attunement, but it was more an attentional issue (limited cognitive resources if something else was in his focus or more stimulating than our interaction for whatever reason). It can indeed feel chilling to have someone Completely oriented to you and then suddenly completely off in another world.

  34. My narcissist boss has fired me worked there nearly 2 years god he was awful to work for, he hated it i you stood up to him and im sorry but i can't be treated like dirt! Had one complaint about me off customer in 2 years! got verbal warning then sack!! 2 days later. I hate him. He has no emthany.

  35. My ex Narc would say that he was the most “ empathetic person ever” that “ no body feels more than me”. He would “ empathize “ with you in order to use your vulnerability of opening up later as a weapon against you. These people are so demon possessed it’s unreal.🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️

  36. Thank you for this. This felt like chemical war fair. He could empathise with others hurting me but would use it to manipulate me and control me when it was something he did that I needed him to see my point or empathise with me. So uncaring and felt like he just didn’t care. He felt deeply wounded by how much he hurt me? Completely spin my pain around and make it about them.
    It’s like running over you and calling an Ambulance for themselves.
    Scary.
    It’s like having the person you love and who is normally there for you to kick you and cause you pain.
    So confusing.

  37. . I've listened to hundreds and hundreds of videos from various people on narcissism. I must say this is the most accurate and confusing aspect of the whole relationship as well as the most painful. It truly is a pattern of survival for people with this Distortion in their thinking. It is rooted in total self-absorption and self-preservation. They truly can't comprehend that other people don't think this way as well. They see it as a weakness when they recognize you don't. As a highly sensitive person it invokes a true sense of pity for them as I recognize how deeply they are scarred. It does make it easier to not take their attacks and insensitivity as personally. They truly are an entity to themselves without the ability to truly connect..

  38. Bingo! My ex knew what empathy was because he demanded it from me towards him all the time. Using empathy for manipulation makes it so much worse than just not having it at all. 🙁

  39. THIS was a revelation. TRULY. Because for the longest time I was thinking they had some kind of neurological deficit or psychological trauma that actually damaged their brains. But no. As you said, the neuroscience shows they HAVE a normal capacity for empathy. They just CHOOSE not to use it. Good. In fact, EXCELLENT. It is one thing to try to deal with this behavior when you're thinking on some level that some of it might not be their fault, that they can't help it. It's quite another to know that they knowingly and repeatedly choose to disregard others. Very, VERY good. Because now I don't have to do anything but let them live with the consequences of their actions. And I don't have to feel obligated to "help" them understand. In other words, EFF 'EM. I don't have time, energy or the inclination to deal with someone who chooses to walk on the dark side. Sooner or later, unless they change direction, the abyss will swallow them up. I don't to be anywhere in the vicinity when that happens. They made their bed. They knew better. Let them lie in it. I want to be there for people who care and people who genuinely try even if they eff it up. Not these fools – and I mean fools in spiritual sense. They have NO idea what's waiting for them if they stay on this path…

  40. "weaponized empathy" . . . YES! I've never heard it put that way, but it's so true! And that was a really good point about "stranger empathy." It is so unsettling and confusing.

  41. I am still confused. According to HG Tudor, the infamous self-aware malignant narcissist, his kind–the narcissist–only have negative feelings, like envy and hatred. Everything else, the love-bombing and any show of empathy, is play-acting. In fact he never tires at reminding the empath: "You fell in love with an illusion."

    What's the difference between a person "not caring" and "lack of empathy"?

  42. Thank you for this video, it was helpful because sometimes I’d find myself doubting if my ex-partner was actually a narcissist because he was able to show minimal empathy sometimes and I believed that narcissist had zero empathy. But now I see he was just weaponizing it at those times. As always, thank you Dr. Ramani.

  43. Yup!! Classic. It IS the weaponization! That's the core of it. I love nuanced explanations of issues. Most things aren't black & white. Thank you, Dr. Ramani! 💗

  44. Please can anyone comment on this, the strange and weird feeling when you deliberately give them "love" and they don't get it, feel it, understand it, or receive it.
    That seems to be at odds with Dr Ramani's view here.
    They don't give love or receive it.
    Worse, their paranoia is set at antagonism, kind gestures are not on the radar.

  45. I’m wondering if Doctor Ramani will discuss medical management of uncaring personalities. Years ago, I read that some men had low hormone levels and were given hormones that help feelings of love and bonding. They were similar to hormones that help bonding between new moms and babies. The study reported good results.

  46. I also want to say that I’ve started going to EMDR therapy because I am tired of ending up with narcissists. Thankful for you and the information you bring us that gave me the push to see something was not right.

  47. I deeply fear that I myself am a narcissist. Maybe not the worst of them, but a narcissist at the end of the day. I don't really know what to do. I have actually thought that people should stay away from me if they don't want to get hurt.
    I'm questioning everything I thought I knew about love and all the feelings that once I thought were so frank and clear inside me. For what I listen to in your videos, there's no hope for narcissist people. They are undeserving of love, maybe because they don't even know what its true meaning is. And I don't dread the possibility of me being a narcissist, as much as I dread the idea that there is no chance for me to do something about it.
    I do pursuit meaningful and loving relationships, and it hasn't given pleasure to know that I've been hurting other people. Regardless, I've made mistakes, I've been selfish, I've been envious, I've been toxic. There is no denying on my capacity of being a horrible person and causing pain. I thought it was just part of the package of being human. But now I'm thinking/feeling that something within needs to be fixed.
    As I said, I don't really know what to do. But I do know that I need help.

  48. After watching so many of your videos I realized I was raised by a narcissist. I always knew she was controlling and selfish. But after listening to your videos; you define my mother so well. My sister is also a narcissist. I on the other hand was a people pleaser. Always wanting a working for everyone to like me, be my friend. I don't do that anymore. I have learned a whole new way of dealing with her now. She is not happy.

  49. They weaponize empathy ALWAYS! They use it as a tool for narcissistic supply. During the love bombing phase, they use it to figure out how to win you over and blind you to their deception. During the devalue phase, they use their empathy to identify the things more valuable and important to you that they can target and destroy. During the discard phase, they use their empathy to get supply, feeding off your feelings of pain, hurt, sadness, and loss.

  50. MY GIRLFRIEND gave me silent treatment for 4 weeks and then once we started texting again she said she had missed a lot me and said she was such a idiot however once she was back she still had little time for me..Is this a sign of NARCISSISM or should I put it down to something else???

  51. My narc ex would never stand up for me if I was being harrassed/threatened by other men, but he would be the first to play the white knight if it was a stranger or female friend. It was so incredibly hurtful and invalidating to witness, knowing that if it was me, he would literally pretend it wasn't happening .

  52. First, I often cry in frozen foods 😂
    Watching a narc go from what appears to be kind and beautiful to being “done” is chilling to say the least. (Would love to see a brain scan on both these people)
    Even apologizing is to try to save face; THEIR face.
    One big difference with empathy is when we’ve done something or said something that might hurt somebody, humility comes to the forefront whereas narcs view this as a weakness.
    Thank you Dr for continued information. Saving my sanity 💐
    🐬🐬🐬🐬

  53. I had a conversation with my sister, who is a psychologist, she thinks that narcissistic people are bad people, simply BAD people and I think she is right because if it is possible for them to feel empathy and choose to block it or use it when it is convenient for them, they really prefer to follow the path of evil. They are bad people.

  54. Recognition of childhood depression: personal reminiscences.

    Cytryn L1.

    Author information

    Abstract

    Prior to 1970, childhood depression was not considered a valid clinical entity by American psychiatrists. One of the early clues was provided in the 1950s by the author's observation of depressive symptoms in children and young adolescents with undescended testicles. This finding was extended to children with several chronic diseases, many of whom exhibited depressive symptoms as well. Eventually, depressive symptomatology was found in children without any physical disorders. This was followed by the introduction of a diagnostic instrument, called the Children's Affective Rating Scale (CARS), later converted into a more formal system called the Child Assessment Schedule (CAS). A provisional classification of childhood depression was published in 1972. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14550930

    Depression in children in the 1950s and 1960s did not exist and so empathy for such self indulgence would be seen as counter productive. Sad children were discipline problems. Frankly, I think this was disguised sadism but that was how I was brought up and and many others too. The adult's suppressed empathy can lead to resentment at feeling empathy and rage at the object when the adult's head is filled with such ideas. I wish people had some awareness of how much things in many fields have changed within a short lifetime.

    I know in England that children's teeth were drilled without anesthetic because they couldn't feel pain. You can imagine how sympathy these kids got. I can't think how anybody could believe such nonsense but it was very convenient to believe it and people did.

  55. To me it felt as if the person did have cognitive empathy at all times – knowing when I was upset – but not having any emotional empathy – feeling my feelings…being upset that I am upset, feeling the need to comfort the other person. Knowing but just not caring. WOW, communal narcissism explains a lot!! Explains some narcissists' career choice…

  56. Do they have or really feel true empathy/compassion…Perhaps, they have observed people(family, friends, tv characters), whom, have displayed these kinds of emotions, and because they’re such great actors/actresses…they emulate the behavior, but, do not feel or connect with those emotions(empathy/compassion), ONLY, when needed? Great information…Ummm. 🤔

  57. Dr Ramani, please do a video on how to distinguish between high functioning Autism and covert narcissism. There seem to be so much overlap. Thank you!

  58. Not enough context with “choosing not to use the empathy”. A COVERT Narcissist would definitely tell people to ALWAYS EMPATHIZE.

    One of the reasons why this video popped up on my timeline is due to myself empathizing with the lies and stories of a couple Cluster Bs I dated over the last few years.

    Narcissists are attracted to Empaths. Many people have told me I’m an Empath, including my therapist, some people who I don’t know have even come up to me and told me that. Many therapists say that Empaths have a Targét on their back with Narcissists, especially a Covert/Victimy Narccisist.

    Dr. Ramani, I’m sorry, but the lack of context in these vids and the propensity to come off like a wounded Victim makes me wonder how much your content EMBOLDENS Covert/Vulnerable/Victimy Narcissists. Much of your content shows the red flags whether you’re calling “all wealthy people Narcissists” or “if he is good in bed he’s a narcissist” or “if he’s charismatic he’s a narcissist”. So pretty much any guy who sacrifices and takes the time to better himself in areas that he was never inherently superb at… is a narcissist to you.

  59. A Narc I was friends with in the past treated me just like her mother treated her. Once I realized this, it made it easier to understand that it wasn’t about me. Her lack of empathy in certain situations is her copying her Mom’s behavior and being insecure/unstable. Never take it personally!!! These types of people have their own Karma and aren’t ready for solid friendships, so don’t be surprised when they make excuses for their behavior. They care about their image more than real life so their social media is meant to deceive you. They appear to be loyal friends when all they know is to gain new supply and throw it away eventually, waiting for the next person. The reason they give the silent treatment is for power and control. They truly don’t care about the quality of the relationship if they get what they want. Your feelings and well-being aren’t important to them, trust me. They don’t care for themselves in a deep way so don’t expect it. Going no contact, not checking their social is the best revenge. Take the high road folks. You couldn’t imagine how chaotic their internal/external world is.

  60. Hopefully in the future npd will be able to be seen for definite on a brainscan. Then round them all up and mass slaughter every last one of them. Worthless waste of life that they are

  61. This was so confusing to me. My experience is that Ns lack empathy — i.e., they don't have a clue how to emotively begin to understand how someone else is feeling unless they SEE the emotion and have learned how to copy it and use it to their advantage in a future 'transaction' to get something they want. I have never, ever known a KIND narc, but they can be sugary NICE. To be kind requires a heart, and a basically selfless motive. Ns can't even imagine what such an emotion would feel like, let alone reproduce it. Kindness REQUIRES empathy. Ns don't have any. Clueless blank stares is what you'll get from them — they have no frame of reference. Some are smarter than others, but the mask ALWAYS slips at some point — they're frauds, even the best of them.

  62. Dr Ramani this is do right! They do have empathy and they can use it very well. Maybe the key is on that, they use other peoples emotion for their own profit. They are just bad persons, lost souls, poisonous beings for me. Nothing more than this

  63. This I feel is spot on! My dear wife was raised by two narcissistic parents and she didn't fall far from that tree.
    Pretentious and superficial relationships is all they were capable of giving.

  64. *KEY= "AT THAT MOMENT" THEY CHOOSE WHETHER TO HOLD ONTO THEIR EMPATHY OR GIVE IT AWAY, *AT THAT MOMENT*. THEY CHOOSE MOST TIMES TO BE SELFISH for weaponry. They do have empathy on a spectrum meaning they know its on a spectrum somewhere they dont know where though and are in constant gaging of their empathy constantly every second living out this obseesive measuring, where they stand at any given moment of how much of a DIMINSHED amount of empathy they have left. I think that's why they hold on to it, FOR SURVIVAL, weaponizing it. Its a sad state of affairs for the. I cant imagine in constant worry of this. I do believe they know its alot less than empaths have. They want ours, to increase their supply, to get their addictive hit so to speak.

  65. This actually makes sense, thinking back and how the narcissist showed empathy to certain people in certain situations but could and would turn around and exhibit a chilling level of disregard toward another (me usually).

  66. It reminds me of Harry Potter, the moment when he first came to Hogwarts and had to put on the sorting hat which asked him if he wanted to go to Slytherin and when Harry kept insisting Gryffindor, the hat said "you could be great in both" -: We all carry the same potential in ourselves, but it is up to us to choose whether we use it for the better or for the worse.

  67. I completely agree, they have empathy and see when they really hurt you and clearly take pleasure in it. Some are much more sadistic than others and I have seen the really sadistic ones will appear to show a bit of empathy if they can show it toward someone who worships them in order to hurt one they hate and are jealous of. I have also seen it is mostly words in the moment seldom any kind of real actions.

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