Sam Vaknin’s Instagram Epigrams (archive only)

Narcissism with Vaknin on Instagram (active account)


Nothing new under the sun. History of modern love and sex: locus of power and control, type of sex. Every generation ADDS to repertory, so today enormous diversity of models and options.




Casual sex bad and dangerous, sometimes a form of self-harming (self-trashing): sex recession, celibacy

technology empowered atomization: self-sufficiency, relative positioning, fetishization of devices, addictive behaviors

Infantilization: puberty starts and ends years later, continuing education, living with parents, no jobs, not driving, not drinking, no unsupervised socializing, no adulthood markers, no committed relationships, marriage postponed

Between ages 30-40 difficult to find partners: men won’t commit, women despair and withdraw, no intimacy or relationship skills (“dating assignments”)

31% lifelong singles, another 30% single most of the time

Depression, anxiety, suicide on the rise among the young


Until the industrial revolution:




family is work unit,

women’s wealth goes to man,

man’s wealth inherited, mobility only for younger siblings

rare divorce,

sex procreative,

men outsource sex,

brawn over brain


Industrial revolution to 1920


Singles in crowded cities

Functions of family outsourced (education in factory schools, healthcare, work), except succor and sex

Gentleman caller (chaperoned)

Women as gatekeepers

Emergence of romantic love, desire




Shortage of men owing to wars (makeup only for women: sexy, not sexual, self-objectification, spectatoring)

Automobile, phone, classified ads, cinema

Dating: fun, first and second base sex common, multiple partners (essentially casual sex)

Dating in college as status marker

Men pay, so have the power




Going steady: sex only in intimate relationships

Stay at home women more conservative than previous generations, men as providers




Golden age of sex:

free love,

college parties,


women empowered by the pill, employment, breaking the glass ceiling

sex with multiple casual partners as an option but always leads to abundant sex in relationships, few singles

harbinger: first dating app in 1965




Hookup culture in colleges where women outnumber men 2:1

Casual sex normative and encouraged until age 30

Porn as sex ed

Dating apps

Relationships perceived as threat (obstacles to career and self-actualization)




Why Are Young People Having So Little Sex? Kate Julian, The Atlantic, December 2018


The Talk: How Adults Can Promote Young People’s Healthy Relationships and Prevent Misogyny and Sexual Harassment, Richard Weissbourd with Trisha Ross Anderson, Alison Cashin, and Joe McIntyre, Making Caring Common Project


Sexual Hookup Culture: A Review, Justin R. Garcia,Chris Reiber,Sean G. Massey, Ann M. Merriwether, Rev Gen Psychol. 2012 June 1; 16(2): 161–176. doi:10.1037/a0027911.


Sexual Hook-up Culture, Continuing Education Corner


Declines in Sexual Frequency among American Adults, 1989–2014, Jean M. Twenge, Brooke E. Wells, Ryne A Sherman, Article in Archives of Sexual Behavior · November 2017, DOI: 10.1007/s10508-017-0953-1


Why Humans Have Sex, Cindy M. Meston Æ David M. Buss, Arch Sex Behav (2007) 36:477–507, DOI 10.1007/s10508-007-9175-2



Low tolerance for uncertainty, a tendency to catastrophize, and generalized anxiety often result in addictive or obsessive-compulsive behaviors intended to either suppress the discomfort or ritually fend off “bad things”, respectively.

Obsession-compulsion and addiction also involve dissociation either as a cause or as an effect. This is why obsessive-compulsives check time and again whether they had locked the door and why addicts have such patchy memories.



Crossed the 200,000 subscribers goalpost, despite YouTube doing its worst to derank (shadowban) my work and hide it from view. More than 41,000,000 views on the first YouTube channel on narcissism.


In my work with alcoholics, I found these three simple steps to be very potent (they are elements of aversive therapy):

1. Wrap every bottle of alcohol in a white sheet of paper. Make finger width marks on the paper. As you pour out of the bottle, scissor out the part of the paper which represents the consumed alcohol.

2. Start a drinking diary. Note down every single drink: the hour of the day, type of alcohol, the precise quantity, the aftermath (how did it make you feel psychologically and physiologically).

Start your day every day by reading ALL the previous entries in your journal.

3. Aim to reduce your drinking by 10% of the residual quantity a day. In other words: 10% of the total on the first day, 10% of the remaining 90% on the second day, 10% of the remaining 81% on the third day, etc.

Good luck. Try these steps. They take little time and are surprisingly efficient at modifying drinking habits.



The fourth volume in the series “The Narcissist on Instagram” has just been released.

Opinionated briefs on:

I. Scams, Scandals, and Scoundrels
II. Men, Women, Gender Wars
III. Narcissists, Psychopaths, and Other Predators
IV. Sex and Intimacy: Forgotten Arts
V. Democracy, History, and Other Fictions
VI. Me, Me, and Me
VII. Public Intellect, Private Rants



The fourth edition of “The Death of Sex and the Demise of Monogamy” is twice the size of its predecessor.

Sex is dead as is monogamous marriage. What will replace them? read about alternative lifestyles (such as swinging), sexual preferences (such as bi- and homosexuality), sexual paraphilias (such as incest, fetishism, and pedophilia), and the role of malignant narcissism in the disintegration of all relationships between men and women.



Transactional sex is any exchange of sexual services for goods, services, and benefits, however minimal - or for the promise of such in the future, within a relationship, a perceived liaison (fantasy), or extradyadically.

A multitude of studies had demonstrated the strong connection between unrestricted sociosexuality, dark triad traits (subclinical psychopathy, Machiavellianism), self-focused sexual motivation, and the Ludic (game-playing, manipulative) love style.

A transactional attitude to sex was also correlated with a borderline personality organization: impulsivity, dysregulation, compulsivity, anxiety, a history of trauma or victimization, unstable interpersonal relationships, and low self-esteem.

Unexpectedly, multiple studies have shown that subclinical narcissism is not correlated with a propensity for transactional sex.

People who are into transactional sex often mistake their involvement (emotional investment in the goal or the project) as “love” or “intimacy”.



The New York Times published yesterday an opinion piece against marriage, calling on people to remain single. It is titled: “What Does Marriage Ask Us to Give Up?” And the answer: “Our hard won independence as singles”.

What this odious op-ed wants you to think is that all marriages are bad and that the ONLY alternative to marriage is to be single. Both assumptions are of course totally FALSE.

To resolve the onerous cognitive dissonance of loneliness, singlehood had become an ideology.

Everyone - men and women - are expected to be
career-oriented, cherish money above all else, and act unrestricted sociosexually (be casual about sex). This is the new unigender role and its attendant social and sexual scripts.

According to Pew Center, maintaining one’s career is 2.2 times more important than being in a committed relationship. Only about HALF trust their partner FOR ANYTHING (with the exception of faithfulness).

Embarking on a relationship and “catching feelings” are, therefore, threats to one’s narcissistic self-actualization best fended off by keeping sex emotionless, meaningless, and never with the same person.

The 20% of the population who are promiscuous by nature thrive in this culture of hookups (and bad, drunk sex). They remain single for life.

Unrestricted sociosexuality is correlated with subclinical psychopathy, substance abuse, and extraversion.

The remaining 80%, having endured the vagaries and dangers of modern “dating”, recoil. About 60% end up in a succession of committed liaisons (marriage, cohabitation). The remaining 20% go celibate and become lifelong singles.

All told, only about half the adult population share their lives with someone intimate. The rest are equally divided between celibate singles and sexually active singles who are exclusively into intoxicated one night stands and anonymous group sex.


Sex is an act of love. Love is not merely a sex act.

When sex is confused for or conflated with love, there is no love and no (good) sex.

Psychopaths often mistake the two (unrestricted sociosexuality is associated with dark triad personalities).



The elements of the Dark Triad personality include Machiavellianism, subclinical narcissism, and subclinical psychopathy. The Dark Tetrad added everyday sadism. I propose a new construct: the Dark Pentagram Personality which will incorporate borderline personality and covert narcissism, but not everyday sadism (which overlaps psychopathy).



The cerebral narcissist may be celibate, but he is not asexual.

He is not interested in sex per se, only as a way to:

1. Prove to himself his uniqueness and irresistibility (which is why he avoids casual sex with promiscuous women); or

2. Get a woman to fall in love with him and them reject her offhand and push her to cheat on him in her desperation and pain; or

3. Establish a new shared fantasy for the provision of 2 out of 3 Ss: services and narcissistic or sadistic supply- but not sex.

In long term shared fantasies, cerebral narcissists often develop ED (erectile dysfunction) or PE (premature ejaculation) as well as disinterest in or even aversion to sex.

The cerebral’s callous misconduct is often misinterpreted as misogyny, but actually it is a compulsive reenactment of earlier childhood conflicts with a parental figure or caregiver.



The other day I was asked why I am not protecting my numerous novel ideas from being pilfered and plagiarized continuously by many people.

I answered: "You cannot and should not “protect” ideas. They are not yours – they are humanity’s. You are just their vessel, a conduit, their temporary custodian."



Intimate relationships and love ("catching feelings") are now perceived by the majority of people under 35 as a double whammy: a massive disruption to one's career and a surefire path to being abused and "played" (exploited).

This unprecedented view of interpersonal liaisons led to a mounting “loneliness gap” pandemic and resulted in four coping strategies:

1. The sociosexually unrestricted (about 20%) remain lifelong singles and play the field in bouts of stranger casual sex and group sex;

2. About 20% avoid all meaningful human contact, sex included. They become schizoid and celibate;

3. Growing numbers turn to same sex dyads. A whopping 1 in 6 women are now lesbian. “Safe” friendships and even intimate relationships between straight and gay are all the rage;

4. Even when in serial relationships, most young people are distrustful and engage in power plays and mind games intended to secure the upper hand. It is all about avoiding being played and not ending up being a loser.

Infidelity is rife and weaponized and is now virtually universal: every year, one in six cheat on their partner (cumulatively, about 60% of both men and women do the deed throughout the life of the relationship).

Strife and myriad forms of abuse (including emotional absence and sex withdrawal) are the norm in these dystopian unions.



In two articles published in 2001 and again in 2008, I predicted an armed attack on the houses of Congress on January 20, 2021.

I was off by 14 days. The insurrection took place on January 6, 2021.

Here is the last paragraph of the text I wrote and published in 2001:

“So, what were the roots and causes of the Second Civil War?

None of the above in isolation - and all of the above in confluence. For decades, the citizenry's trust in a packed and rigged Supreme Court declined. Politicians came to be regarded as a detached and heartless plutocracy. Americans felt orphaned, cheated, and robbed. The national consensus - the implicit agreement that together is better than alone - has thus evaporated. The outcome was the shots and explosions that rocked the United States (and the world in tow) on January 20, 2021."

Read the original article here:


Loving someone requires courage. Being vulnerable open you up to malice, hostility, and aggression. It also transforms you, getting rid of your old self. But you need top take this leap of faith to grow and heal and complete yourself.



Fraternities are associations of mostly white, affluent, privileged, straight male students, ensconced in their own housing, and granted a monopoly on serving alcohol and throwing all night parties on campus. Sororities are denied these concessions. So much for gender studies and women’s lib lip service in higher education.

Since their inception, fraternities have been cesspools and incubators of toxic masculinity and misogyny: gang rapes and sexual assaults are par for the course - as is hazing.

The only reason these miasmas are left to fester is money, capitalism’s sole divinity.

Fraternities save colleges the need to invest in dormitories. They serve to promote and reify the “fun” aspect of collegiate life and thus constitute a selling point in student recruitment. Their alumni donate four to five times more money to their alma maters that non-frats.

When education is considered just another business, money talks and the patriarchy is on full display, as virulently alive as ever.



In 1997, I coined the phrase: "narcissism epidemic". It is now endemic: the new normal and bon ton. We are all suffering from its aftereffects one way or another. Like so many lemmings, we are headed off a cliff. Is there hope? A solution?

Interview with Saralee Cassidy on the FlowGrow Experience Podcast/Empower Hour, Limerick City Community Radio:



Why do anxious people habitually procrastinate, then become anxious and insomniac?

Anxiety and insomnia are the anxious person’s oldest friends. They are his comfort zone. So he procrastinates IN ORDER to experience the familiar and safe anxiety and insomnia. It is a ritual that renders the world predictable and structured, a form of obsession-compulsion.

Deep inside, the procrastinator engages in magical thinking: he just “knows” that everything will work itself out ultimately.

Procrastinating is a way to test himself and reaffirm (somewhat grandiosely) his superior skills and mental acuity.

During the phase of procrastinating, the anxious catastrophize the delinquency and its outcomes IN ORDER to experience anxiety (and its malevolent twin, insomnia).

This is the grandiose purgatory cliffhanger: can I pull it through this time? Will I make it? A veritable nailbiter.

Then when he does pull it through and makes it in the nick of time and against all odds - relief washes all over him.

It is sheer biochemistry:

Backing himself into a corner

Extreme anxiety (attendant insomnia)

Success, winging it, making it in the last moment.

Extreme anxiolytic relief.


Is your relationship abusive but not dead or beyond hope? How to tell relationships apart and what can you do to revive your partnership?



Why do women participate in swinging (The Lifestyle), gangbangs, dogging, camming, and other forms of multiparty kinky sex?

The few who venture out with strangers and without the presence of an intimate partner are dark triad personalities and, typically reckless primary (factor 1) psychopaths, acting out borderlines (factor 2 psychopaths), or histrionic narcissists - all more or less one and the same diagnosis, according to emerging current research.

The risks involved, breaching the taboo, being the center of male attention and desire, and the novelty arouse them.

It is a dual trip of power and ego and also a way of showing the middle finger - and much more besides - to social mores and conventions, including the male double standard.

But even these hardened Amazons ultimately seek acceptance, to be “liked or loved”, and to belong (to a gang, to a man they fancy). Their deep motivation is nonautonomous.

The codependents among these women strive to enhance the intimacy with their existing partners by sharing these unusual experiences. These are usually communal psychopaths.

All of them share an instrumental view of sex: as a trade off for goods and services, a prop to self-esteem, or a method to fend off abandonment.

They tend to dissociate the mostly degrading sex. They numb their emotions and have reduced affect display.

Some of them embed their activities in the context of a victimhood narrative (feminism) or an ideology (empowerment) while allowing multiple men to objectify and disempower them in the hookup culture, for example.

Decoupling sex from true and deep emotions protects the participants from trauma and renders swinging couples happier (more ego syntonic) than vanilla coupled, studies show.



Not everyone is built to be in a relationship. There are different attachment styles and the insecure ones predict recurrent relationship failure.

Across multiple studies, at least 15% of adults state that they are much more comfortable and content being alone. 31% of adults are lifelong singles. The majority of the rest are immured in abusive, dead, or ephemeral pseudo-relationships.

Intimacy and love are lost arts and outliers, not the norm.

The problem is that some people feel threatened or constrained by love and intimacy in longer committed relationships.

They anticipate failure, hurt, misery, and discord - so, preemptively, as an anxiolytic strategy, they bring about these very outcomes by repeatedly adopting dysfunctional behaviors (“let the other shoe drop”).

These relationship misfits subvert and undermine their relationships and gain “intimacy” and acceptance and faux warmth via sex with strangers, even groups of strangers. They feel “liked”, even “loved” in a “connection” when in casual, drunk encounters with anonymous partners.

Typically, they experience dissonance with their choices and they resolve it by dissociating, numbing their emotions, abusing substances, and reduced affect display. Some convert their ego dystony into a narrative ideology of empowerment.

People who dread intimacy feel a lot more unencumbered with strangers. They use fantasy to compensate for the low level of intimacy in these seedy and unsatisfactory exploitative and predatory encounters.

Many of them finally give up on the chase and settle into a career-centered life of celibacy and self-sufficiency.


Dynamic-maturational model of attachment and adaptation teaches us that the majority of attachment strategies lead to relationship failures.


Narcissists convert children into sources of narcissistic supply and parentify them. They treat them as extensions of themselves and weaponize them in their attempts to destroy you and get back at you.



The age of testosterone (patriarchy) was defined by territorial aggression and sexual procreation. It was followed by a 200 year interlude: the age of oxytocin, a prosocial bonding hormone. Romanticism inexorably led to feminism and ushered in the age of atomized hedonism and addictive, individualistic, pleasure-seeking dopamine.


Richard Grannon summarizes my insights perfectly: "The narcissist, be they male or female, becomes your mother and they are inviting you to become their mother and now you are in this symbiosis of feeding each other narcissistic supply".

The full convo is available on both our channels.



Rebelliousness in adolescence is a critical phase of transitioning from identity diffusion to identity formation. The pubertal core constellates in opposition to elders and reference and deference to peers.

But in self-destructive teens, the process goes awry. Boys channel their mutiny into aggression and antisocial behaviors. Girls become promiscuous and self-trash sexually and recklessly. Both fail to find sublimatory (socially condoned) channels for their differentiation.

The abuse of substances abuse serves to resolve or mask the ominous torsion of raging cognitive dissonances. Both depression and anxiety disorders are rife.



In relationships with borderlines, the narcissist offers unconditional love and parentifies himself: the borderline stands in for his dead mother and affords him a second chance to fix/heal/rescue/save her and, by extension, himself.

In relationships with non-borderlines, narcissist and intimate partners both are good enough maternal figures in a shared fantasy (“fake family”).



Self-destructive and self-defeating behaviors can be grouped into the following categories:

1. Sexual self-trashing;

2. Morally injurious conduct (breaching ethical edicts and mores and negating the rights of others);

3. Antisocial comport and delinquency;

4. Self-sabotage (procrastination, compromising faux pas in public, etc.);

5. Abuse of substances (including overeating, smoking, alcoholism, and doing drugs);

6. Relationship dysfunctions (avoiding or undermining intimacy with a partner via maltreatment, absence, withdrawal, or acting out).


Borderline twin anxieties: abandonment and engulfment. Both put borderline in touch with her schizoid core (emptiness), negates her existence

Approach-avoidance repetition compulsion

Sudden change in behavior:

At the beginning of the relationship, she feels focus of attention and in control (internal locus)

Then, daily life gives rise to the twin anxieties (external locus) and she reacts with acting out (psychopathic self-state).

Dual mothering

In relationships with non-borderlines, narcissist and intimate partners are good enough maternal figures in a shared fantasy (“fake family”).

In relationships with borderlines, the narcissist offers unconditional love and parentifies himself: the borderline is a dead mother and affords him a second chance to fix/heal/rescue/save her and, by extension, himself.



The current dichotomous taxonomy of sociosexual orientation is lacking.

People with restricted sociosexuality crave sex only with committed, emotionally meaningful relationships.

The unrestricted kind are turned on by casual and stranger sex but have difficulties with intimacy and fidelity in long-term relationships.

A third category is missing: dysregulated sociosexuality. These are people who are exhibitionistic, sadomasochistic and otherwise paraphiliac. They tend to prefer kink, group sex, extreme stranger sex (like dogging and glory holes), live camming, and self-objectifying sexual encounters.

Psychopathy and extraversion are highly correlated with unrestricted sociosexuality. They may also be the dark triad drivers of the dysregulated variant.



Female promiscuity and mate poaching rise in societies (e.g., Baltic states, Russia) and environments (for instance: colleges) with adverse sex ratios (fewer men than women).

But the same applies when men absent themselves by going abstinent and celibate or by refusing to commit and invest in long term relationships.

These male avoidant behaviors create a virtual gap that affects sexual strategies of both sexes and tilt them towards short-term mating (aka casual sex).

We need to come up with a new measure: sex availability ratio. How many men and women make themselves known in the sexual marketplace at any given moment. This is a much more accurate predictor of the evolution and prevalence of sociosexual scripts.



To crave something, one must know it well.

Take love, for example.

Maybe you are just afraid to love.

You sure know what the ABSENCE of love feels like.

But the absence of love amounts to a great definition of love, it captures its essence.

If we constantly miss something because we have never had it - we get to know it intimately through the gnawing sense of its bitter and familiar vacancy and our own concomitant incompleteness.

We are never whole until we have embraced our desires.



There is love even in mathematics: it is called a cardioid.

When one circle rolls around another, identical circle, any point on its circumference traces the shape of a curvy heart with a rounded edge.

More about my work in physics:



Studies in the past 40 years have upended everything we thought we knew about female sexuality in the West. A few nuggets:

Women orgasm mostly from digital or oral clitoral stimulation. Penetration doesn’t do it for them.

Women are likelier to cheat during estrus (ovulation).

Women are three times more likely to be lesbian than men are to be homosexual.

Women prefer good looking men for one night stands and men with a stable income for long-term relationships. No wonder sexlessness in couples (21%) and infidelity (45%) are off the charts. The numbers are likely massively underreported.

The two main sexual fantasies of women are: to be kidnapped and raped and to participate in an orgy or a gangbang. But only about 8% act on their fantasies.

Women desire casual sex (though not as much as men do), but are deterred by considerations of risk, social stigma, and the orgasm gap. Removing these obstacles increases their willingness to bed even total strangers.

Most younger women have sex usually when they are drunk.

Women feel empowered and desired in group sex and, having tried it, want it more than men.

Women tire of the sexual monotony of monogamy sooner than men. Increasingly, women are the ones who avoid committed relationships. The majority of divorces are initiated by women.

A majority of female singles turn celibate, but a substantial minority (about 20%) lead a life of hookups, dating, and group sex (sex parties).

Far fewer women are getting married or having - far fewer - children. The replacement rate in all industrialized countries is unmet. Populations are aging and declining rapidly everywhere from the UK to Russia to China.

Women place studies, career, travel, and having fun with friends way above having a committed relationship even as a majority of them harbor a nebulous goal of “getting married one day”. Few mention children even as an aspiration.

About one third of women are lifelong singles and another one sixth are lesbians.



Psychopaths are hypersexual and use sex as a form of control within a power play (e.g., in prisons, corporate settings). But Both cerebral and somatic narcissists are asexual.

The cerebral prides himself on his superior ability to resist sex. He renders his dysfunction an ideology and encrusts it with his grandiosity.

The somatic weaponizes and instrumentalizes sex as a form of instant narcissistic supply. Its sole purpose is to reaffirm his irresistibility through an endless stream of conquests and his pyrotechnic sexual prowess.

Both types are predatory and use sex as a form of "false advertising" intended to acquire partners for their shared fantasies. Mission accomplished, both go sexless within the dyad: the cerebral becomes abstinent and the somatic cheats profusely.



Two FACTS about happiness:

Childless folk are happier than parents

People in non-monogamous, open, non-exclusive, BDSM, and group sex relationships are more content - and mentally healthier and more stable - than adherents to monogamy.

What do you think of them apples? We sure had been brainwashed and misled to believe the opposite!



Studies in dozens of countries show that men are loth to form long-term relationships with promiscuous women whose "body count" exceeds 9 sex partners (fewer in some countries). Why is that?

For three excellent and rational reasons:

1. Men are competitive and seek high relative positioning among their peers. A woman who had been summarily used and discarded by multiple guys is an embarrassment ("that's the best you can do? I and all my friends had her for free any time we wanted!").

Such a woman is "cheap" and "easy" and investing in her renders the man a gullible sucker and a "simp": why be the only one to pay for what she had been giving away gratis to everyone?

2. Promiscuity had been linked to subclinical psychopathy, time and again. It is a strong indicator of a lack of boundaries, a weakness of character (people pleasing), or of reckless defiance. Not good qualities to have in a partner.

3. Past behavior is an unfailing prognosticator of future conduct. Promiscuity is strongly linked to serial cheating.

Nonautonomus sexual self-trashing driven by the wish to be accepted and the need to buttress self-esteem by garnering attention are addictive, lifelong behaviors.



Psychopaths and narcissists - academics forefront - have created a dystopian world which the rest of us must inhabit and comply with, especially when it comes to sex and interpersonal relationships.



“Savage Love” is a sex and relationship column for straight couples spewed out by Dan Savage, a gay LGBT activist.

In one of the more memorable pieces, he asks why should you sacrifice a life you have had together and break up with your partner or divorce him only because you find out that he has had oral sex with someone else on a business trip.

It is not about the blowjob, Savage. No one walks away over the physical act. It is about the
betrayal, the breach of trust, and the abrogation of the explicit and implicit contract of monogamy.

You want to be free to have sex with others? Honestly communicate it to your mate and agree to have an open relationship, granting her the same freedoms.

That the world’s leading relationship advice columnist doesn’t grasp these basic tenets of decent behavior goes a long way towards accounting for why we find ourselves in the dystopia of our contemporary world.



Victimhood is big business: an initial coerced “investment” (slavery, genocide, sexual assault) bears dividenda for a lifetime and even for generations.

African-Americans in the USA are now demanding reparations, totally ignoring decades of massive unilateral transfers from the Federal and state governments.

But they are not alone in leveraging and monetizing their past and present suffering. Native Americans and Jews had preceded them in industrializing their undeniable egregious and cruel mistreatment in the past.

Social justice activism is on the rise and it attracts dark triad personalities, narcissists, and psychopaths (studies in British Columbia) and people whose victimhood constitutes their identity (see studies by Gabay et al., 2020).

Online covert narcissists label themselves “empaths” and go on a rampage of unmitigated aggression against anyone who dares challenge their supernatural skills, angelic victimhood, and moral superiority.



Pareto, dating, and mating: women prefer “beta” males even for one night stands, definitely for long-term relationships. This is why Friends with Benefits (FwB) is the dominant model for casual sex – not hookups.

Sex among people younger than 25 is on the decline: the number of sexual partners and the frequency of sex is lower than among previous generations.

Not hypergamy, but hypogamy: women more educated and earn as much as men.

Women consume more pornography than men – but text-based, not visual.



Narcissism is glorified and glamorized. The narcissist is a predator who masquerades as a good enough mother and makes you fall in love with your idealized self through his gaze.



Real sex is soon going to be a thing of the past: holographic porn, sex dolls, AI sex apps, VR and AR sex in the Metaverse, and AI sex robots will easily outcompete the carbon-based versions, especially where men are concerned.

This transition will give rise to a host of new ethical and behavioral questions.

Two examples:

A woman who would use a futuristic haptic dildo linked directly to her CNS (central nervous system) to penetrate a partner - is she really a man? After all she would experience the extension exactly as a man does his penis!

Another one:

Does sex on a trip with a gorgeous AI robot amount to cheating on your mate?

The robot is the product of a collective of minds. So is consummating intercourse with such a contraption a form of group sex?

And what is the meaning of the very words “sex” and “gender” in such a world?

Gender is performative, the outcome of socialization, an expression of dominance, and of a gendered personality. But do all these apply to “gendered” robots?

Sex is biological, albeit fluid. Robots are nonbiological entities. So, do they have a “sex”? What about transgendered robot which switch from male to female in mid act?

And what does the phrase “
artificial or virtual sex” mean anyhow? In which sense is full-fledged sex with another object not “real” sex?



Narcissist’s introject muted, yours active and vociferous.

Narcissist theatre play: he scripts and directs, you act and prop (external locus of control)

Current advice wrong, freezes emergent roles and, therefore, locus.

Reverse the roles: you script and direct, he acts and is a prop, whether he is physically present or not (introject).

Own the narcissist by appropriating his roles and then constellate/integrate the parts

Separation-individuation on the road to recovery and healing.



Advice online and in self-help books is often wrong and counterproductive.




There is no such thing as “wrong partner”. Your mate selection is always on point and on target.

If you are a self-loathing and self-trashing masochist - an abusive narcissist is the right partner for you, for one night or for decades.

If you dread intimacy, being vulnerable, and heartbreak - an avoidant-dismissive mate is a match made in heaven. Having a true intimate partner would only enhance your anxiety and amplify your insecurities to the point of paranoia.

If you are thrill-seeking, reckless, and defiant - you gravitate towards psychopaths.

Your attachment style is lifelong (though life goals, choices, and behaviors in relationships can be modified). It makes sure that whoever you may end up with is always the right partner for you.



Narcissist Makes You Dissociate the Abuse (Grannon-Vaknin Convo EXCERPT).



Capitalism is founded on destructive envy and driven by it.

Envy provokes misery, humiliation, and impotent rage.

The envious cope with their pernicious emotions in five ways:

1. They attack the perceived source of frustration in an attempt to destroy it, or "reduce it" to their "size". Such destructive impulses often assume the disguise of championing social causes, fighting injustice, touting reform, or promoting an ideology.

2. They seek to subsume the object of envy by imitating it. In extreme cases, they strive to get rich quick through criminal scams, or corruption. They endeavor to out-smart the system and shortcut their way to fortune and celebrity.

3. They resort to self-deprecation. They idealize the successful, the rich, the mighty, and the lucky and attribute to them super-human, almost divine, qualities. At the same time, they humble themselves. Indeed, most of this strain of the envious end up disenchanted and bitter, driving the objects of their own erstwhile devotion and adulation to destruction and decrepitude.

4. They experience cognitive dissonance. These people devalue the source of their frustration and envy by finding faults in everything they most desire and in everyone they envy.

5. They avoid the envied person and thus the agonizing pangs of envy.



Attachment style is stable over the lifespan, but attachment behaviors and internal relationship models change in 30% of people.


Behaviors can be modified to counter effects of attachment style.


Intensity of attachment orientation changes.


The changes are mediated via:


Quality of relationships, type of partner



Personality Disorders

Life Crises




Chopik, W. J., Edelstein, R. S., & Grimm, K. J. (2019). Longitudinal changes in attachment orientation over a 59-year period. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 116(4), 598–611.


Attachment styles and close relationships: A four-year prospective study

Lee A. Kirkpatrick, Cindy Hazan

Personal Relationships: Journal of the International Association for Relationship Research, June 1994,


Australian Journal of Educational & Developmental Psychology. Vol 11, 2011, pp. 60- 77

Attachment across the life span: Factors that contribute to stability and change

Megan McConnell, McGill University and Ellen Moss, Université du Québec a Montréal


Why does attachment style change? J Davila 1, D Burge, C Hammen

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, J Pers Soc Psychol. 1997 Oct;73(4):826-38


Personality and Social Psychology Review

Revising Working Models Across Time: Relationship Situations That Enhance Attachment Security

Ximena B. Arriaga, Madoka Kumashiro, Jeffry A. Simpson, et al.

First Published June 2, 2017


Bartholomew, K., & Horowitz, L. M. (1991). Attachment styles among young adults: A test of a four-category model. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 61(2), 226–244.


John B. Separation, anxiety and anger. In: In Attachment and Loss: Volume II. The Hogarth press and the institute of psycho-analysis; 1973:1-429.


Bretherton I. Updating the ‘internal working model’ construct: Some reflections. Attachment & Human Development. Published online December 1999:343-357. doi:10.1080/14616739900134191


Pietromonaco PR, Barrett LF. The Internal Working Models Concept: What do we Really know about the Self in Relation to Others? Review of General Psychology. Published online June 2000:155-175. doi:10.1037/1089-2680.4.2.155


Bartholomew K, Horowitz LM. Attachment styles among young adults: A test of a four-category model. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 1991;61(2):226-244.


Macfie J, Mcelwain NL, Houts RM, Cox MJ. Intergenerational transmission of role reversal between parent and child: Dyadic and family systems internal working models. Attachment & Human Development. Published online March 2005:51-65. doi:10.1080/14616730500039663



Face to face interactions are critical for our mental health and proper functioning.



The dating scene is infested with autoerotic narcissists. Boundaries are the solution.



Resistance is the coherent deployment of psychological defenses to cope with ego dystonic information about oneself. It could also be a collective response. Certain cognitive-behavioral patterns (e.g., repetition compulsion) are also resistances.

There are
four groups of resistances:

1. Comfort zone preservation: maintaining control by rejecting the unfamiliar and the challenging. This fosters a sense of safety, predictability, certainty, agency, and self efficacy.

2. Resistance to dread- and panic-inducing insights and interpretation of the patient’s unconscious processes and the resulting conscious content, choices, decisions, and behaviors.

3. Cognitive distortions: resistances intended to buttress and uphold a fantastic, inflated, grandiose, or otherwise unrealistic sense of self-worth and self-image.

4. Resistances intended to cement and defend a narrative which provides meaning and structure (organizing and hermeneutic principles, like science, political or professional affiliation, or religion on the collective level), direction and goals, and makes sense of the world and of others (theory of mind and internal working model). In fact, such individual and collective narratives can be construed as resistances writ large.



All negative affects can be both interiorized and externalized: aggression is no exception, but it is the most well-studied.

One view of depression is that it is a form of internalized (self-directed) aggression.

But aggression can also be externalized (like in psychopathy) or sublimated or even institutionalized (like in the army or police or medical surgery).

Society rewards sublimated aggression (even in sports and business). This social approbation is anxiolytic and antidepressant.

Mood is reactive to affect. So, it can be externalized, too.

How do externalized expressions of affects and attendant moods appear to outside observers?

From the outside, people monitor the actions of others and do not involve themselves with the deeper strata or with behavioral etiology. Hence phenomenological psychology.



Transference can be construed as a form of flashback (revividness): we displace onto a meaningful figure (like a therapist or an intimate partner) emotions and ideas associated originally with objects in earlier life.

We relate to the new entrant as if s/he were that previous figure and project onto them object representations acquired by earlier introjections.

This way we imbue them with disproportional significance and interact with them using ingrained behavioral strategies.

We often use projective identification to force the newcomer to react in ways that uphold this comfort zone, even when the outcomes are unfavorable to us.

In a way,
transference is a repetition compulsion and so, clinically, a resistance. It serves to reenact early childhood experiences with a latent hope of redemptive resolution.


News Intervention Interview

Sam Vaknin ( ) is the author of Malignant Self-love: Narcissism Revisited as well as many other books and ebooks about topics in psychology, relationships, philosophy, economics, international affairs, and award-winning short fiction. 

He is Visiting Professor of Psychology, Southern Federal University, Rostov-on-Don, Russia and Professor of Finance and Psychology in SIAS-CIAPS (Centre for International Advanced and Professional Studies).


Scott Douglas Jacobsen: Our focus today is the proposal of “nothingness” in a specific sense by you. To start in negation, what is not “nothingness,” in your sense?

Professor Sam Vaknin:

Nothingness is not about being a nobody and doing nothing. It is not about self-negation, self-denial, idleness, fatalism, or surrender.

Jacobsen: Following from the previous question, what is nothingness?


Nothingness is about choosing to be human, not a lobster. It is about putting firm boundaries between you and the world. It is about choosing happiness - not dominance. It is accomplishing from within, not from without. It is about not letting others regulate your emotions, moods, and thinking. It is about being an authentic YOU.

Jacobsen: How does this nothingness connect to Neo-Daoism and Buddhism?


It would be best to watch this video:

Jacobsen: We live, as many know, in an era of narcissism. You brought this issue to light in 1995, particularly pathological narcissism. What are the roots of the ongoing rise in individual and collective narcissism?


The need to be seen and noticed in an overcrowded and terrifyingly atomized world. Ironically, narcissism is a cry for help, a desperate attempt to reconnect. There is no such thing as an “individual”: we are all the products of our interactions with others (object relations). But, increasingly, technology is rendering us self-sufficient and isolated. So, our social instincts metastasize into narcissism: dominance and hierarchy replace sharing and networking.

Jacobsen: How does one choose happiness over dominance, authenticity over being fake, and humanity rather than lobster-kind, with this form of nothingness?


We need to choose happiness over dominance (be human, not a lobster); Choose Meaning over complexity; Choose fuzziness, incompleteness, imperfection, uncertainty, and unpredictability (in short: choose life) over illusory and fallacious order, structure, rules, and perfection imposed on reality (in short: death); Choose the path over any destination, the journey over any goal, the process over any outcome, the questions over any answers Be an authentic person with a single inner voice, proud of the internal, not the external.

Jacobsen: What is the importance of living a life worth remembering in the philosophy of nothingness?


Identity depends on having a continuous memory of a life fully lived and actualized. At the end of it all, if your life were a movie, would you want to watch it from beginning to end? Nothingness consists of directing your life in accordance with an idiosyncratic autobiographical script: yours, no one else’s. Being authentic means becoming the single story which only you can tell.

Jacobsen: What type of personality or person can accept nothingness in its fullest sense?


Only those who are grandiose are incapable of Nothingness. Grandiosity is the illusion that one is godlike and, therefore, encompasses everything and everyone. Grandiosity, therefore, precludes authenticity because it outsources one’s identity and renders it reliant on input from others (hive mind).

Jacobsen: How is nothingness an antidote to narcissism?


Narcissism is ersatz, the only self is false, others are instrumentalized and used to regulate one’s sense of faux cohering oneness. Nothingness is echt, harking back to the only true, authentic voice, eliminating all other introjects, not using others to regulate one’s internal psychological landscape. Narcissism is alienation, it interpellates in a society of the spectacle. Nothingness gives rise to true intimacy.

Jacobsen: What is the ultimate wisdom in the philosophy of nothingness?


Identify the only voice inside you that is truly you. Peel the onion until nothing is left behind but its smell. Rid yourself of introjected socialization. Become.

Jacobsen: Then, to conclude, what is the motto or catchphrase of nothingness in this sense?


Do unto yourself what you want others to do to you.

Jacobsen: Thank you for the opportunity and your time, Professor Vaknin.

Vaknin: Much obliged for having me. Always a pleasure.



I am putting the finishing touches to a cycle of clinical lectures on addiction, incorporating my new theory of addictions as neurological baseline states.

The 4 lectures are a cycle:

1. Is Addiction a Disease? (1 lecture)

Is addiction a biological disease or is it a socially-conditioned response? Is there such a thing as “addictive personality”?

2-3. Personality Disorders and Addiction (two lectures)

Addictive behaviors such as substance abuse are much more common in certain personality disorders. Why is that? What are the aetiological and psychodynamic connection and pathways between the two clinical entities?

4. Emerging addictions: DSM 5 and Beyond (1 lecture)

New addictions are added every day: to caffeine, to pornography, to the Internet (social media), prescription drugs (opioids). Is this proliferation of diagnoses justified? The DSM revised the definitions of alcohol abuse vs. social and binge drinking. Has it gone too far?



Many of the things we think we know about psychotherapy and psychology are DEAD WRONG.


Modern psychotherapies are centred around the twin counterfactual concepts of “individual” or “self” and “choice”.

From a very early age, we are little more than the sum and intersection of our relationships with others.

Choice is often an illusion. In reality it is constrained by mental illness, one’s personal history, the costs involved, and a lack of viable alternatives.


Studies show that young people regard sex as the opposite of emotional intimacy, they decouple the two.

They sleep only with people they are unlikely to “catch feelings for” or who they even actively dislike.

When they do end up being attracted to someone or get infatuated (limerence), they delay the sex with that person and in some cases, avoid it altogether.

The sex in the committed relationships of the young is totally different to the sex they are having with strangers: it is a lot LESS authentic, it is fake, constrained, and anxious.

The young feel much more comfortable to express their true sexuality in one night stands because they are unlikely to be judged or rejected and, even if they were it is no big deal: they don’t care about the partner and will never see them again.

Casual sex is frequently bad because it is self-centred, disrespectful of the partner and her needs and pleasure, and objectifying.

Consequently, while in the initial phases, relationship sex is more gratifying (there is no “orgasm gap” between men and women). But, it typically deteriorates into tepid sex or into sexlessness and results in skyrocketing infidelity among both genders, probably because of the inability to integrate emotions with sex.



Many of the things we think we know about psychotherapy and psychology are DEAD WRONG.



Father absence has few negative outcomes on children. This is especially true if the mother is "good enough" (Winnicott) and not "dead" (Green). Children's future wellbeing as adults depends crucially on demography and socioeconomic status, not on the presence of the biological father.


Find and Buy MOST of my BOOKS and eBOOKS in my Amazon Store:


Mooney, A., Oliver, C., & Smith, M. (2009). Impact of Family Breakdown on Children’s Wellbeing: Evidence Review. Department for Children Schools and Families.


Holmes, J., & Kiernan, K. (2010). Fragile Families in the UK: Evidence from the Millennium Cohort Study.


Golombok, S. (2000). Parenting: What Really Counts? London: Routledge.


Bernardi L., & Larenza O. (2018). Variety of Transitions into Lone Parenthood. In Bernardi L., Mortelmans D. (Eds) Lone Parenthood in the Life Course. Life Course Research and Social Policies, pp. 93-108 Springer, Cham.


Millar, J., & Ridge, T. (2009). Relationships of Care: Working Lone Mothers, their Children and Employment Sustainability. Journal of Social Policy, 38(1), 103-121.


Fisher, H., & Low, H. (2015). Financial Implications of Relationship Breakdown: Does Marriage Matter? Review of Economics of the Household, 13(4), 735-769.


Growing up in a Single Parent Family; A Determining factor of Adolescent’s Well-being Ajita Gupta & Seema Kashyap, Advanced Journal of Social Science,  ISSN: 2581-3358 Volume 7, Issue 1, pp. 138-144, 2020


Are Children from Divorced Single-Parent Families Disadvantaged? New Evidence from the China Family Panel Studies, Chunni Zhang Department of Sociology, Peking University, Chinese Sociological Review, Volume 52, 2020 - Issue 1


Tuba Demir-Dagdas, Zeynep Isik-Ercan, Seyma Intepe-Tingir & Yasemin, Cava-Tadik (2017): Parental Divorce and Children From Diverse Backgrounds: Multidisciplinary Perspectives on Mental Health, Parent–Child Relationships, and Educational Experiences, Journal of Divorce & Remarriage


Consequences of Divorce-Based Father Absence During Childhood for Young Adult Well-Being and Romantic Relationships Hanita Reuven-Krispin, Dana Lassri, Patrick Luyten, Golan Shahar First published: 03 November 2020


Father absence and adolescent development: a review of the literature, Leah East, Debra Jackson, Louise O'Brien, Journal of Child Health Care, First Published December 1, 2006


The Consequences of Father Absence By Sara McLanahan & Julien Teitler, Parenting and Child Development in Nontraditional Families, 1st Edition, First Published1998, Psychology Press, eBook ISBN9781410602763


The Role of the Father in Child Development, 5th Edition, Michael E. Lamb


Bocknek E.L. (2020) A Family Systems Perspective on Father Absence, Presence, and Engagement. In: Fitzgerald H.E., von Klitzing K., Cabrera N.J., Scarano de Mendonça J., Skjøthaug T. (eds) Handbook of Fathers and Child Development. Springer, Cham.


Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, Cross-cultural evidence does not support universal acceleration of puberty in father-absent households, Rebecca Sear, Paula Sheppard, and David A. Coall, Published: 25 February 2019,


Sex-Specific Developmental Effects of Father Absence on Casual Sexual Behavior and Life History Strategy, Jessica A. Hehman & Catherine A. Salmon, Evolutionary Psychological Science volume 5, pages121–130 (2019), Published: 20 September 2018,


Family Relations – Interdisciplinary Journal of Applied Family Science, Trends in the Economic Wellbeing of Unmarried-Parent Families with Children: New Estimates Using an Improved Measure of Poverty, Christopher Wimer, Liana Fox, Irwin Garfinkel, Neeraj Kaushal, Jae Hyun Nam & Jane Waldfogel, Population Research and Policy Review volume 40, pages1253–1276 (2021)


Journal of Marriage and Family, Family Diversity and Child Health: Where Do Same-Sex Couple Families Fit?, Laura Freeman Cenegy, Justin T. Denney, Rachel Tolbert Kimbro, First published: 07 December 2017


Comparison of intergenerational transmission of gender roles between single-parent families and two-parent families: The influence of parental child-rearing gender-role attitudes, Mengping YangabI-Jun, Chena Yunping, Songa Xiaoxiao, Wanga Children and Youth Services Review, Volume 125, June 2021, 105985


Fair comparisons: Life course selection bias and the effect of father absence on US children, Alejandra Rodríguez Sánchez, Advances in Life Course Research, Available online 16 December 2021, 100460


Absent Father Timing and its Impact on Adolescent and Adult Criminal Behavior, Michael F. Ten Eyck, Krysta N. Knox & Sarah A. El Sayed, American Journal of Criminal Justice (2021), 30 August 2021


Father departure and children's mental health: How does timing matter? Emla Fitzsimons, Aase Villadsen, Social Science & Medicine, Volume 222, February 2019, Pages 349-358



The narcissist is an actor in a monodrama, yet he is forced to remain behind the scenes.

The scenes take centre stage, instead.

The Narcissist does not cater at all to his own needs. Contrary to his reputation, the Narcissist does not "love" himself in any true sense of this loaded word.

The narcissist feeds off other people who hurl back at him an image that he projects to them. This is their sole function in his world : to reflect his False Self, to admire him, to applaud his actions, even to detest and fear him - in a word, to assure him that he exists by giving him constant attention.

Otherwise, the narcissist feels that they have no right to tax his time, energy, or emotions.

In the essay, I survey the main body of research about Narcissism.

The Frequently Asked Questions deal with various aspects of narcissistic (often abusive) behavior, traits, personality, and style - and there is much more in the journal entries and in the hundreds of excerpts from the Narcissistic Abuse Study List.



In 1995, I coined the phrase “narcissistic abuse” to describe a subtype of abusive behavior that was all-pervasive (across multiple areas of life) and involved a plethora of behaviors and manipulative or coercive techniques.

The narcissist’s superego is comprised of infantile, harsh, sadistic introjects. It is frozen in time, in an early stage of personal development, devoid of reflective self-awareness. It is much closer to the Id and leverages its aggression against the self.

The True Self in the unconstellated (unintegrated) precursor to the Self. It includes introjected object-representation (voices and inner objects – “avatars” – which represent caregivers, such as parental figures).

Full interview on the News Intervention website.




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