The Narcissist in Court
Frequently Asked Question # 78
It is very easy to "break" a narcissist in court by revealing facts that contradict his inflated perception of his grandiose (false) self; by criticising and disagreeing with him; by exposing his fake achievements, belittling his self-imputed and fantasized "talents and skills"; by hinting that he is subordinated, subjugated, controlled, owned or dependent upon a third party; by describing the narcissist as average, common, indistinguishable from others; by implying that the narcissist is weak, needy, dependent, deficient, slow, not intelligent, naive, gullible, susceptible, not in the know, manipulated, a victim, an average person of mediocre accomplishments.
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How can I expose the lies of the narcissist in a court of law? He acts so convincing!
You should distinguish the factual pillar from the psychological pillar of any cross-examination of a narcissist or deposition made by him.
It is essential to be equipped with absolutely unequivocal, first rate, thoroughly authenticated and vouched for information. The reason is that narcissists are superhuman in their capacity to distort reality by offering highly "plausible" alternative scenarios, which fit most of the facts.
It is very easy to "break" a narcissist – even a well-trained and well-prepared one.
Here are a few of the things the narcissist finds devastating:
Any statement or fact, which seems to contradict his inflated perception of his grandiose self.
Any criticism, disagreement, exposure of fake achievements, belittling of "talents and skills" which the narcissist fantasises that he possesses.
Any hint that he is subordinated, subjugated, controlled, owned or dependent upon a third party.
Any description of the narcissist as average and common, indistinguishable from many others.
Any hint that the narcissist is weak, needy, dependent, deficient, slow, not intelligent, naive, gullible, susceptible, not in the know, manipulated, a victim, an average person of mediocre accomplishments.
The narcissist is likely to react with rage to all these and, in an effort to re-establish his fantastic grandiosity, he is likely to expose facts and stratagems he had no conscious intention of exposing.
The narcissist reacts indignantly, with wrath, hatred, aggression, or even overt violence to any infringement of what he perceives to be his natural entitlement.
Narcissists believe that they are so unique and that their lives are of such cosmic significance that others should defer to their needs and cater to their every whim without ado. The narcissist feels entitled to interact or be treated (or questioned) only by unique individuals. He resents being doubted and "ridiculed".
Any insinuation, hint, intimation, or direct declaration that the narcissist is not special at all, that he is average, common, not even sufficiently idiosyncratic to warrant a fleeting interest inflame the narcissist. He holds himself to be omnipotent and omniscient.
This article appears in my book "Malignant Self-love: Narcissism Revisited"
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Tell the narcissist that he does not deserve the best treatment, that his desires are not everyone's priority, that he is boring or ignorant, that his needs can be catered to by any common practitioner (medical doctor, accountant, lawyer, psychiatrist), that he and his motives are transparent and can be easily gauged, that he will do what he is told, that his temper tantrums will not be tolerated, that no special concessions will be made to accommodate his inflated sense of self, that he is subject to court procedures, etc. – and the narcissist will likely lose control.
The narcissist believes that he is the cleverest, far above the madding crowd.
Contradict him often, disagree with him and criticize his judgement, expose his shortcomings, humiliate and berate him ("You are not as intelligent as you think you are", "Who is really behind all this? It takes sophistication which you don't seem to posses ", "So, you have no formal education", "You are (mistake his age, make him much older)", "What did you do in your life? Did you study? Do you have a degree? Did you ever establish or run a business? Would you define yourself as a success?", "Would your children share your view that you are a good father?", "You were last seen with a certain Ms. … who is (suppressed grin) a stripper (in demeaning disbelief)".
I know that many of these questions cannot be asked outright in a court of law. But you can insinuate them or hurl these sentences at him during the breaks, inadvertently during the examination or deposition phase, etc. Narcissists hate innuendos even more than they detest direct attacks.
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