Villainy wears many masks, none so dangerous as the mask of virtue. — Sleepy Hollow 1999
I never had a friend like her. She always knew what to do, what to say and of course, what to wear. She was loud and grandiose. She was overly generous and sympathetic. I don’t know when it changed, it was so slow and subtle.
The Stages Of A Relationship with a Covert Narcissist
1. The Idealization or Love Bombing Phase
It started with the love bombing or idealization phase. She anointed me in her social circle as her closest and dearest friend. She would lift me up with adoration and praise. I was now riding shotgun with her flying monkeys in the backseat. We did everything together and I felt so incredibly lucky to have met her. I couldn’t imagine not being her best friend and sharing everything with her.
2. The Devaluation Phase
Then came the devaluation phase. She would set me up for a fall by giving me advice that would bomb horrifically. She wanted me to fail, to act the fool. The gaslighting and word salad along with various other abusive mind games was her reaction to my questioning her advice. She was methodical in her planning and execution of tearing me down to make me feel inferior to her. She was conditioning me to need her to build me up. She would randomly insert the love bombing stage and then back to the devalue through manipulation. Her goal? She wanted to take my strengths and accomplishments as her own. She wanted to replace my good stuff with what she was behind the mask, weak and empty, sad and desperate.
3. The Discard Phase
The discard was even more painful than the devaluation phase. I was starting to catch on but still couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that she was my enemy disguised as a friend. As her mask started to slip and I questioned her more and more she grew agitated. She couldn’t risk me exposing her. Quite frankly she was getting bored of me. She had been successful at eroding my confidence and derailing my hopes and dreams. She had inserted her fear and self loathing. I no longer provided her with anything she wanted, she had taken it all. Or at least she thought she did. She would not return my calls, not invite me to events. Lie about what she did and where she went. I went from the A List to the D list.
Mirror Mirror On The Wall
She was larger than life, she would not enter a room without everyone knowing she was there. She got the best tables and reservations at the most exclusive places. She was a legend in her own mind and intent on proving herself right by making her chosen victims small and pumping up her flying monkeys.
She would always use a person’s last name when she thought they were impressive. It sounded so strange to name someone’s first and last name when you are claiming to be their personal friend. If they had, what she thought, was a prestigious career, she would add their job title EVERY time she mentioned them. We were having drinks with Rob Smith, Vice President at Nestle, and his wife Sharron, when we realized we left our headlights on. So Rob Smith, Vice President at Nestle, gave us a ride home in his Range Rover. She was so caught up in status and material possessions, name dropping, label whoring, it was so obnoxious but she made it seem so normal. This was her way to show how important she was, by association. It was blatant and obnoxious.
When you questioned her or called her out on her behavior she would erupt into a narcissistic rage. When she turned on you she was viscous and vengeful. Sometimes the slightest faux pas she took as declaration of war. Basically any criticism, however well meaning, or attempt at holding her accountable for her actions created a narcissistic injury. You were considered treasonous and she had to take you down in a cruel and inequitable way. She could not allow anyone to expose her for what she was, especially to herself. Her reactions were over the top, unrelenting and completely irrational.
A Survivor Emerges
It took me a decade to figure her out, to see behind the mask. I endured the triangulation, isolation, gaslighting, the pathological lying, deceit and the smear campaign. She stole from me, she trashed my reputation, she was intent on destroying my self worth, she wanted to be in complete control of me. I tried to end the friendship several times and she hoovered me back. She would not let me go. Any new friend I would make she would infiltrate and take over. If I stood up to her she turned everyone in my social circle against me. She had brainwashed me to believe I needed her. The flying monkeys, or her narcissistic harem, never saw behind the mask so they would never believe me. See how everyone loves me? Would be her response when I called her out.
Now I finally see her without the mask and I am unveiling her. A female narcissist best friend is, in my opinion, the most damaging of narcissistic relationships. She is the one you go to when your heart is broken, when you accomplished something fabulous, she is the one who holds you up and walks by your side. She is the one who counsels and advises, she validates your thoughts and dreams. You believe she wants the best for you and you would do anything for her.
She is Felicity and this blog is my story how I went from Felicity’s best friend to her victim to a survivor of narcissistic abuse. Stay Tuned for the unmasking of Felicity………..
If you feel you might have a friend with covert narcissistic personality disorder please share your experience in the comments section. I want to bring more awareness on how the female covert narcissist can quietly infiltrate your life and insidiously manipulate and abuse you without you realizing what is happening.
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