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Can a Narcissist Feel Happiness? Print E-mail



The goal of this website is to give support to people who are facing problems in their relationship related to cheating, abuse and narcissism. I am living in Europe and English is not my native language, I wish you will excuse me if I make some grammatical errors. I decided to write in English because I wish to reach as many people as I can around the world.



Narcissistic people usually feel happiness only when they feel something good happens to them. For example, a narcissist is feeling happy when someone praises them, shows admiration and respect to them or is otherwise making them feel important and powerful. Narcissistic people want and need this feeling of acceptance and admiration more than anything, and anyone who can offer this feeling to them will be treated well by them.

Sadly, often the only exception is the spouse of a narcissist. The spouse receives special treatment only for a certain period of time, but after that his/her role changes. This happens due to the fact that a narcissist gets bored very easily. This does not usually happen with friends of a narcissist, since these people are usually not spending with friends enough time to get bored with them. That is why every time a narcissist meets friends, he/she is usually very friendly and polite towards them, because it is very important for narcissistic people to give a good impression.

This is the reason why the friends of a narcissistic person often simply cannot believe that he/she can be such a monster towards his/her spouse. Instead, often friends tend to believe when a narcissist is complaining that all the problems in a relationship are caused by the spouse. Only if the friends have a chance to observe a narcissist from close distance for longer period of time, they start to see his/her true nature. It can be some impatient words, cold and uncaring behavior in unexpected situations, small things like that. But often there is not enough time to spend together with friends and so usually no one else except the spouse of a narcissist will have a chance to observe and notice the warning signs.

It is good to read the stories of others who have been in similar situation. If you wish to read about the methods I used to teach my mind and my brain to get rid of my "addiction" to my narcissistic spouse, visit page Recovery after Narcissism and Cheating. If you wish to read more about how I was able to break free, please visit the discussion forum and read this thread: How I was able to end the relationship with my narcissistic spouse.

A narcissist feels happiness in the right situations but for the wrong reasons

A narcissist can feel happy when he/she has been helping someone. The source of this happiness is not the fact that the person who received help feels happy, but the fact that a narcissist was able to appear as someone with a good heart, someone who is caring, divine etc when he/she was helping someone else. A narcissist is loving the feeling they get when they think they have been helping someone and that this person and also other people are aware that they have been doing "good deeds". So, again it all boils down to a narcissist, not to the person who received help. This is natural behavior for these people, who cannot genuinely care about anyone but themselves.

The children of a narcissistic person are often his/her "extensions". If the children are successful in their lives, a narcissist can be proud of them, because they are his/her children, and that explains why they are doing so well in life. I have known a narcissistic man, who always spoke about his children to other people by advertising how well the children have been educated, how successful they have been, which universities they went to, and how well they are going to do as they grow older. It sounded like an advertisement rather than a loving father talking about his children.

I also noticed that this person had a "favorite" child who he praised more than the other child. He occasionally said to his closest friends how the child who he did not praise so much was a bit "weird" and "strange", almost autistic etc. I had an opportunity to meet this child at one point, and the child turned out to be very nice, normal and relaxed person. I found it somehow very strange that this man would say such things of his own child. It appeared as if he was putting people into categories in his mind, based on how "valuable" and educated they were, regardless of who these people were, even if they were his own children. I found this to be quite sad.

Knowing how the mind of a narcissist works helps you to manipulate a narcissist

Feeling good about oneself, that is what happiness is all about for a narcissist. If a narcissist feels something is increasing their personal value in the eyes of the others, whatever that thing is, it is making them feel happy. It can be helping someone less fortunate, bragging about their own achievements or achievements of someone, who they are related to in such a way that they feel they have actually contributed to those achievements (for example children, colleagues or even friends).

If one realizes this, it is actually quite easy to manipulate a narcissistic person, since they are so shallow and superficial that they usually fail to see if someone is praising them for real or is only putting up "an act" to fool them in order to gain some personal benefit. Vanity makes person very vulnerable, and the vanity of a narcissist is greater than that of anyone else. If you keep this in mind, you can pull the strings and control these people, at list to a certain extent.

To read more about narcissism and how the mind of a narcissist works, go to section Narcissism. To read personal stories of life with a narcissistic spouse, go to section Personal Stories: Narcissistic Spouse. To read about cheating and how the mind of a cheater works, go to section Cheating and Infidelity. To read personal stories of life with cheating spouse, go to section Personal Stories: Cheating and Infidelity.

Go to other sections by clicking Main Menu links (left bar).

- Maria

If you wish to submit your own story and get feedback and support for your situation or if you wish to contact me for any other reason, send me email to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Comments (64)
  • Anonymous  - B - this helps alot
    yep just wana screem YESSSSSS its not just me
    I keep finding little snipts of writting and it could be me saying the exactly the same thing. Im only new to this and have never had to deal with a narcassist before.
    I want to thank you for writing about closure, I have read about revenge but its not a good idear to anger them and I dont want to stoop to there level. I honistly think he is a foul,horridle bully and I like the fact that I can honistly say that he treated me like s**** when he became scared of being exposed and he was abel to get away with it because Im a nice person and he wont change me I wont alow him to. Im gona do my best to not let this experianse with him dictate how I spend the rest of my life. If I haddent read your post then I wouldnt have realised its the lack off closuer its all the normal every day arguments that you have in a normal every day relasionship I couldnt have with him and I didnt relise how much I had to hold in or get the blunt of his horrible mouth.
    Did enyone else find that he tryed to make them think that they were the crazy one or there something wrong with them.
    did anyone find closure
  • BG  - This perfectly describes my Narcissist husband!
    Everyone who does not have to spend any considerable time with my sick Narcissist husband thinks he is sooooo Godly and soooo great! The average person is just not informed about how much of an actor Narcissists are, and just how devious they can be.

    He ingratiated himself enough to get voted in as Chapter President, and Chaplain, a position that he abused to unduly influence others, and to get cozy with other women within his circle. But I, my sons, and their significant others have witnessed how rude, crude, and completely inconsiderate he is towards close family members. It's like Jekyll & Hyde.

    I tipped off the leadership about his Narcissist diagnosis and had them do some reading up on the characteristics of Narcissism here. At first, they were convinced that I was just griping about him, because he was my spouse, but the more they observed and talked with him, the clearer it all became.

    He makes a point of asking me to go to his "meetings", because he believes that it will anger me (which it used to do), but now I blow it off cheerfully and tell him I'm going somewhere else more enjoyable. He lies to the other members of his "club" to explain my absence, to lead them to believe one way or another about me, and few question what he says, except those who know what the truth really is.

    He used me in the beginning to try to present himself as the picture of Great Husband etc., but when he had accomplished that, he made sure that he said or did something to make sure that I would NOT want to accompany him, so he could carry out his predator behavior with the women/wives/girlfriends in the Christian club without having to worry about hiding it from me.

    I am fully aware that he has been keeping company with a very needy single new Christian, and she with him, against the rules and in full view and complete defiance of the leadership. How does he carry it off? By acting all Godly and convincing the other members that they're not REALLY seeing what they are seeing before their very eyes, much the same way the Crazy Making Narcissist does with their spouses. But the joke is on him.

    The leadership has reported his behavior to the national leadership and he is about to be removed from his position and membership. In addition, I let that information anonymously slip to the woman he cheated on me with, the one that has become a thorn in his side, so there's now a three way argument going on between the three of them. LOL.

    I'm sooooo glad that I'm on my way out for good! Thanks for your great advice!
  • B  - This helps alot
    Iam so gald I came across this. :D I left my narcissist boyfriend after 8 on and off again years 7months ago tommorow,why Im so glad I came across this is I had a dream just last nigh that I found a bunch of other womens belongings and pic and other things in his old dresser he used to have in real life and it bothered me because I woke up as soon as I was gona confront him.So anyhooo I needed some kind of closure because I never got the full truth out of him I know there are plenty of more lies he is keeping to himself.So finding this site helped me realized Iam not the crazy one and He needs help..What I decided "leaving"was a good decision.I dont feel bad for it now and it helpsknowing Im not the only one in this world going through this.. :D that It wasnt my fault...Iam glad for those who also realized this but sad for relationships being ended or separted..
  • Cloud
    Dear Alan, I am sorry to hear what you are going through...! I divorced my N wife 3 years ago and since then she has done everything she can to turn our kids against me... succeeding to some extent. Try to stay strong. As years go by and your daughter grows older she will realize the truth. Right now she is just being a child who does not know any better than to behave the same way as she sees her mother behave towards you. She cannot understand that she is doing something wrong. This is NOT your fault. It is not your daughter's fault either. Deep inside she loves you, you are her father. Always remember that. Stay strong!
  • Silvia  - Strength and a big hug!
    Dear Alan, your message touched me. I understand your pain. Please stay strong! Everyone who is visiting this site has experienced something bad... You are not alone! We are all here to support each other. I send you a warm hug and lot's of positive energy!!!!! I am just in the beginning of the detachment phase after living with N for several years... I am trying to get my life back on the track. Let us be strong together!!!!
  • Alan  - CHILD OF A NARC
    As i write this i'm in tears with worry 4 my little girl of 10 to my ex narc... I sent my child back to her mums house upset. The reason this happened was that i'm trying hard 2 get over 11 years of this hidden torture which is very hard in itself but now i'm seeing so many of these traits in my baby girl, its like her mum is still there torturing me... its hard seeing this as i love my little girl dearly. I contemplate not having contact, i contemplate asking her mum to wake up to this illness she has, but me finding out the truth about her cheating and waking up to her torture of me has made her hate me so much... I went through 11 yrs of this. Please can someone give me some advice on this as this is breaking my heart 4 my little girl and myself... Again thank you.
  • Julie  - Your daughter is worth it PFA
    Call your attorney and go to the court and have a protection from abuse order. Get 100% custody

    Your wife: She will not wake up to that she has a personality disorder...that is the evil side to this disorder...that they think they are perfect. Unfortunately it is not a mental disorder that can be treated. She developed this aroune the age of adolescences. It is not healthy for you daughter to be with her. I

    You are a victim. I am for 33 years and getting a divorce and have shared my experiences today with the others but the final straw was my 23 year old daughter going for a man just like him.

    I should have done it earlier. I will pray for your strength.

    Again, Alan, good attorney who is used to dealing with victims....which you and your daughter are.

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