How convenient: situational helplessness

One of the things you’ll notice about a narcissist is not only their weird priorities but how they switch from forceful entitlement to hands-up-in-the-air helplessness.

As I shared in an earlier post, my dd’s father will force her to watch documentaries that distress her. They have nothing to do what she’s studying at the moment in her academics. They’re just stuff he wants to watch and for some bizarre reason, believes she should, as well.

However, he can’t see to it that she takes a shower when she’s with him. “She doesn’t want to”, he’ll say.

Well, she doesn’t want to watch well produced documentaries of people’s gross inhumanity to one another either, but that doesn’t stop him from enforcing his will upon her.

Certainly, my dd is the kind of kid who would go for a year without taking a bath if it were her choice. But guess what? It’s not!

As a parent, we have the responsibility to get our children to do things they don’t want to if it’s in their best interest. We have the responsibility to teach them self-discipline and good life skills.

How is it that he can suddenly become so helpless and a victim to her whims, when it comes to a for real parental responsibility, and yet he can draw up his over 6 foot tall height, call on his father authority and say with impassioned conviction, “She’s going to watch what I want.” As if her not wanting to is outrageous and he’s just not going to put up with it anymore!

But he can’t make her take a shower and when I get her, her hair is dirty and her scalp smells, because she hasn’t showered or bathed in the three nights and four days she’s been with him. She hasn’t reached puberty yet, but when she does…hopefully, she will have more respect for her hygiene at that time than he does.

You know, this has nothing to do with him giving in to what she wants or doesn’t want. He can’t teach her self-discipline, because he lacks it himself. And he’s lazy. It’s that simple.

And selfish. He takes his showers. He wouldn’t think of going four days without them. He wouldn’t step out of the house or let himself become that grungy. He takes care of himself.

But isn’t that what narcissism is about?

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4 Responses to How convenient: situational helplessness

  1. Isabell says:

    “One of the things you’ll notice about a narcissist is not only their weird priorities but how they switch from forceful entitlement to hands-up-in-the-air helplessness.”

    I know my ex-N is brilliant at a form of military espionage. I once thought it was due to his video game interests, and didn’t give a great deal of credit, nor was I ever really concerned due to his helplessness in other areas of his life. I didn’t perceive him, in anyway a threat to me. In fact, I felt whole heartedly he needed me to survive.

    Now, I cringe with my lawyer, and other highly educated, professionals governing our case say, “Oh, you give him too much credit. He’s not smart enough to execute the form of character assasination you’ve described. He just got lucky, and took advantage of an opportunity, that’s all.”

    His entire life he’s managed to get other’s to provide him the honor of the throne while he contributed very little, if anything, while he robbed other’s blind. When the house of cards comes tumbling down, and his mask is exposed, he masterfully becomes the helpless victom; incapable of comprehension, let alone premeditative destruction of another’s life.

  2. PhoenixRising says:

    Oh, my dear, how do you restrain yourself from strangling those “highly educated” but woefully reality ignorant professionals?

    When the house of cards comes tumbling down, and his mask is exposed, he masterfully becomes the helpless victom; incapable of comprehension, let alone premeditative destruction of another’s life.

    I hear you, sister. Who says only little girls use that technique? The bottom line is does it (whatever “it” may be) serve their purposes, get them out of responsibility or into control.

    And if “it” means being a victim or being the conqueror, it makes no difference. It’s all the same to them.

  3. Survivor says:

    I have seen the helplessness act on many occasions. My ex told his church he had no money for xmas because his wife left him. The church collected money for him and he made my kids write thank you cards saying they were poor and wouldn’t have presents without the church’s generosity. The church still doesn’t know (and I wanted to tell them) that during that same month he received an inheritance of “several” thousand dollars. It makes me sick especially what he did to the children.

  4. PhoenixRising says:

    Disgusting. The old “my ex-wife wiped me out story”. Conning a church into paying for your kids Christmas presents though is a narcissist’s special touch. And to force your children to participate in the scam? That truly is the most disgusting part.

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