Narcissists really are ridiculous human beings once you see their manipulations and lies for the nonsense that they are. One of the more ridiculous ploys of a Narcissist is the “Feel sorry for me because I’m sick” ploy. The “sickness ploy” happens right around the time that you are threatening to leave, or have recently left a Narcissist–although it can happen months or years later as part of a “hoover.”
In this ploy, a Narcissist will throw out all the stops in order for you to feel sorry for them, and focus on their “sickness” instead of their behavior. Some examples of common sicknesses that they use are: having cancer, having a heart attack, needing to go to rehab, being suicidal…and maybe even mental illness (the voices are what made them do it). The vast majority of times, none of these sicknesses are even real.
So…do Narcissists commit suicide?
The two that I hear from others (and have heard in my own life) are a Narcissist claiming that they, or someone close to them has either cancer or is suicidal. More likely than not, these are not true. They are just a rouse to pull at your heartstrings and to get you to reopen communication with them. After all, if you were to reopen communication with them because of some life-threatening reason, you’d put all your anger at them aside, and probably approach them with compassion and concern…and that’s what they are hoping for. If their suicide threats are legitimate, the best thing you can do for them is to call 911 and let the professionals get them the help the need. If you do call 911, and it turns out they really aren’t suicidal, I can guarantee you it’s a game they will be a lot more hesitant to play with you next time, as all the attention of sirens, and EMS showing up at their door runs a risk of damaging their public image. And we all know how much work they put into maintaining their precious public image!
Why are they lying about having cancer or being suicidal?
They are using the sickness ploy for two reasons: To get you to reopen communication with them, and/or to get your attention onto their “sickness” and off of their behavior. You might think that it’s harmless to reopen communication with a Narcissist–that just one short text message won’t hurt anything…but it does. That one short text message is exactly what they want. They know that once you respond to them, they’ve convinced you to crack open that door of communication. Once that door is unlocked and cracked open, they know they can easily bust it in. In fact, they are banking on it.
What kind of person does that?!
A highly manipulative person (generally a Narcissist or Sociopath) is the kind of person who lies about these kinds of things, that’s who. Keep in mind that they do not have moral or values. Their only goal is to get their ego fed. That’s it. They don’t care about love, or happiness, or relationships, or their children. They really don’t. I know that sounds harsh, but it’s the truth. If they come across like they love you or their children, it’s because wearing the mask of a good husband or father somehow feeds their ego. That’s it.
Their goal with the “sickness” ploy is nothing but another lie in an attempt to manipulate you into giving them what they want–which is generally access back into your life. Keep in mind that they don’t want access back to you because they love you (they don’t love like “normal” people do). They want access back because you are providing them with some sort of supply–whether it is sex, attention, food, clothing, shelter, money and/or status of some kind.
So now you know that there is such a thing as a “sickness” ploy, don’t fall for it! Stand strong. Stay “No Contact” or “Gray Rock.” Cutting off, or limiting communication like this might feel like you are playing a game, and in reality you are–and have been all along, you just didn’t know it. Is it next to impossible to have “healthy” communication with a Narcissist or a Sociopath. In fact, if you were to do so, you would be setting yourself up for more manipulation, and potentially great harm, as you are being open and honest and they are trying to manipulate. The more open and honest you are, the more ammo you are giving them to hurt you with. You need to set boundaries with them in whatever way works best for you. It’s high time you started putting yourself first, and them second. (I know this is hard for all you codependent, caregiving types out there–myself included!)
If you are ready to leave this manipulative person, it helps to prepare yourself for the potential of more nonsense and lies from them, and from their “flying monkeys.” In fact, I’d say that once you leave is (unfortunately) when the real manipulations begin. But don’t let me saying that deter you from leaving. My goal is to set you up for success. I want you to know what you are in for, so you don’t get caught up in their lies for any longer than you already have. Get a game plan for how to leave them; get a support system in place, and get the hell out. You can do this. Hell, you’ve been in a relationship with a Narcissist–everything else in life is a cake walk compared to this!
My goal is to educate, empower, and inspire other abuse victims in understanding more about what happened to them (and how to prevent it from happening again), as well as how to go on and rebuild an amazing life.
Even though I have had a lot of "in the trenches" experience with highly manipulative people of all kinds, I consider myself to be a student of Narcissism, mindset, motivation, healing, and life in general, and am by no means an expert on any of these topics.
It's for these reasons, that when you are reading my information that I encourage you to hold to what helps, and let the rest go.
Latest posts by Dana (see all)
- Episode 55: How Do I Stop My Addiction to the Narcissist? - August 23, 2017
- Episode 53: Strategies to Help Prevent Your Child from Being Manipulated by a Narcissistic Parent - August 21, 2017
- Episode 54: How can we handle victim blaming and revictimization? - August 18, 2017