Narcissists can be abusive physically and mentally. They believe they are superior to others and if they don’t get their way, they will lash out with their narcissistic punishment tactics. This could be through narcissistic rage, which could include yelling and/or physical actions or with the silent treatment where they don’t interact with you at all. When engaging in the silent treatment and withholding any sort of communication, they may take it out on your child by not paying child support. Through physical abuse, silent treatment, or not paying child support, the narcissist may find themselves in jail. What happens when you send a narcissist to jail?
Of course, there are many reasons why a narcissist may go to jail, and I only discuss a few specific reasons. However, regardless of the reason, the narcissist’s response will be similar. If the narcissist goes to jail this is a significant blow to their ego and a form of narcissistic injury. When the narcissist is jailed, it is harder for them to convince themselves, and others, of their superiority and entitlement. They become just like everyone else, and the narcissist can’t consider themselves to be like everyone else.
If the narcissist goes to jail be prepared for them to place all blame and responsibility on you. If you wouldn’t have asked them about their life, or questioned what they were doing then they wouldn’t have had to hit you. If you weren’t crazy and always causing problems, then the police wouldn’t have been involved. Similarly, if you didn’t tell the court about their lack of child support payments then they wouldn’t have been arrested.
As you can see, the reason the narcissist went to jail is because of you and what you did. It has nothing to do with them or their actions. This is typical blame shifting. The narcissist will play the victim and start the smear campaign to ensure others know how you are in the wrong and not them. The narcissist wants to keep the spotlight off them and onto you.
The narcissist’s life is a concoction of various lies they have created to maintain a façade that benefits only them. Narcissists are focused on impression management through influencing how others think of them. If there is negative information that is released about them, they work on overdrive to ensure others are seen as the problem so they can maintain a certain image of themselves. Through their lies and finger pointing they can influence how others think and feel.
So, if you have been a reason the narcissist has found themselves in jail, be prepared for an increase in their narcissistic punishment tactics. You, in their eyes, are the reason for the situation they are in, and this deflates their narcissistic ego. They must punish you to feel better about themselves. Add in the lack of empathy and lack of object constancy and the narcissist can readily make things miserable for you. Even though they cared about you in the past, they can’t remember any positive things about you when they feel you have wronged them.
Don’t bother trying to explain to the narcissist why you made the decision you did, how they were wrong, or how you want things to get better between you two. They don’t care. When the narcissist experiences shame from a narcissistic injury, they don’t understand logic. They aren’t trying to figure out the error in their ways or how to make better decisions in the future. That would require acceptance of them as the problem and responsibility taking, which they can’t do. If the narcissist has gone to jail, use their absence as a time to come up with options on how to leave the relationship. And if leaving isn’t an option at all, or you aren’t ready, allow their absence to be a time in which you make yourself a priority and focus on what makes you happy.