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Dealing with Narcissistic Rage

Posted Apr 21 2010 8:37am

Eventually everyone will be on the receiving end of narcissistic rage. Most people will be spared a daily dose of this noxious brew. For those who are married to narcissists or work for them, their exposure is much greater. Narcissistic rage is part of the narcissistic personality structure. This level of vituperative rage is bottomless. Rage is not anger. Anger has a specific focus and a beginning and end. Narcissistic rage is volcanic and primitive.

If you are the spouse of a narcissist you know very well how devastating these attacks of temper are on your nervous system. The volume and force of these frequent displays are intolerable. They appear to come out of nowhere. That is not the case. They are built into the narcissistic personality disorder structure and are not inclined to change. Those who live with the narcissist frequently blame themselves for these prolonged outbursts that color the emotional and psychological atmosphere within the family. The continual explosiveness of a narcissistic parent is highly disturbing to a child in particular.

There are several ways you can deal with narcissistic rage. Learn to be calm for your own well being. Developing a practice of stillness such as meditation is very effective in slowing down your breathing, racing thoughts and apprehensions. It also creates a sense of separateness and strength to the individual. Consistent practice of meditation over a period of time will change the way you perceive yourself and those around you. Your ability to use your intuition will become much keener. You will gain a sense of detachment from the narcissistic drama and clearly know that you are not responsible for these inappropriate displays. You will learn to not overreact to the narcissist's rage. That is what he/she wants you to do. The art of not reacting to the rage contagion is powerful. There are times when removing yourself physically from these scenes is part of your essential self care.

Many spouses and partners of narcissists must learn to lead their own lives and develop their potential despite the narcissist. Build a dependable support system of a few friends whom you can count on at any time. Getting regular cardiovascular exercise not only keeps the body healthy but provides an essential outlet for the emotions and psyche. The endorphins that are released lift our moods and help us feel more grounded and steady in every way.

Some spouses and partners of narcissists decide that regardless of the changes that they make, it is no longer possible for them to live with these disruptive indivduals and choose divorce. Developing and nurturing your strengths in every facet of yourself will prepare you for the formal severance of this relationship. It is your decision. Take stock of your life both day to day and with a long lens. You are entitled to use your full creative potential, free to express your thoughts and emotions, to be treated with respect, have a sense of deep inner peace and islands of solitude where you can go to be inspired and renewed. Visit my website:

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Telephone Consultation

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