Advice and Help During the Breakup of Your Relationship

Beauty and the Beast: When the Narcissist is NOT Who He or She Appears to Be

narcissist change

The Narcissist Changes As Eyes Blink
By Tigress Luv, The Breakup Guru and Author of The Counterfeit Heart

Narcissist Change All the Time Without Exception


Who we are stays the same throughout our lives. Our personality – our character – pretty much stays with us throughout our lifetime, with only the most 'life-changing' events sometimes altering our personality or changing our character. However, the narcissist (the ultimate shapeshifter) changes like a chameleon to blend in with his or her environment or to gain favors or acclaim. Whereas we have past relationships, current relationships and future relationships, the narcissist has past lives, a current life, and future lives. He or she doesn't move on from people, they move on from lives – they move on from one self, or one character, to another. They metamorphose onto and into new roles.


Narcissists change. They are shapeshifters.


In many cases, the narcissist's shapeshifting forms are punitive in nature. The narcissist may believe his new 'shape' may be a just punishment for the crimes he or she believes have been unjustly imposed upon them. Sometimes the shape becomes powerful with its anger or punishing with its silence.


Sometimes the narcissist changes into the shape of beauty or forms into a sweet or caring character just to deceive the gullible.


The narcissist also changes shapes in order to fool or trick his or her audience.


This is true with narcissistic shapeshifting when the narcissist wants to avoid being held responsible for something, accountable for his actions, or when somebody wants something from them. (Such as anything at all ! ranging from 'love' or 'emotional support' to parental obligations or 'alimony'.) The narcissist will keep changing in order to fool or trick his or her pursuer, opponent – or victim.


Shapeshifting also gives the narcissist powers by being able to manipulate the minds of others, to usurp property, statuses, or titles, or to gain favors or admiration.

In addition, narcissists change personalities and characters to win another's attraction. Once the person they are after has succumbed to their fake charms, the real beast emerges.  Such as with Beauty and the Beast, when it comes to narcissists what you see, and what you hear, is not what you get.

The Greek god, Proteus, was a shapeshifter. In fact, the adjective 'protean' was derived from this legendary character. The general meaning of protean is to be versatile, mutable, and capable of assuming many forms.  Like protean, the narcissist is the master of adaptability, easily assuming the 'character' of his surrounding elements. For instance, when in the company of rodeo queens he can become a true cowboy, or a Wall Street whiz when dining with the upper crust, and a virtuoso when in the presence of artisans.

Like protean he can easily mute to match his or her surroundings to glean advantages. defines the word protean:

1. readily assuming different forms or characters; extremely variable.
2. changeable in shape or form, as an amoeba.
3. (of an actor or actress) versatile; able to play many kinds of roles.
4. ( initial capital letter  ) of, pertaining to, or suggestive of Proteus.


Shapeshifting, transformations and metamorphosing serves the narcissist with a plethora of advantages all at which gaining admiration and adulation is at root.


So, the next time you hear the word 'narcissist' please don't just think in terms of 'selfish' or 'conceit' but, instead, think deceitful shapeshifter. When it comes to narcissism, I believe what we really have here is a group of disorders in some people who should more aptly be referred to as shapeshifting 'Proteanists', not 'narcissists'. I think the word 'narcissist' should only be used when in classifying people who are selfish, conceited, or have self-promoting tendencies. Because you and I both know that the 'real narcissist' goes way beyond those tendencies.

Read more about breaking up with a narcissist.


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