Being Drawn to the Narcissist’s Mysteriousness and Unpredictability

One of the many things I’ve learned about narcissists is that nothing about them is consistent, predictable, save and ordinary. Their manners, the stories they tell, their behavior towards us are always characterized by mysteriousness and unpredictability – and it is exactly this shadowy aura that often attracts us to them. Being with them is never boring, as they are always capable of suprising and exciting us – and of involving us in an emotional rollercoaster ride. The excitement makes it very hard for us to let go and to acknowledge just how harmful their inconsistency is for our well-being. We are extremely drawn to their eccentricities and their anomalous behavior because it provides a welcome diversion. Consequently, after the end of our relationship to the narcissist we often feel empty and desolate – and we come to regret the fact that we have to return to our seemingly eventless, monotonous and lonely existence.

What adds greatly to the mysterious aura surrounding the narcissists is that there is no way of knowing what exactly is going on in their minds, They are absolutely inconsistent in their words and actions. On some days they shower us with affection, are extremely loving and passionate and make us feel elated. Then again they ignore us for days, serve us with lies and excuses and expose us to pain, drama, insecurity and triangulation. There is no way to figure out the rationale behind their fickleness and their changing attitude and conduct towards us. However, we often find ourselves drawn to the excitement that is an effect of their impenetrability – at least this was the case for me. On the one hand, I suffered greatly from the state of not knowing. On the other hand, I got hooked on the excitement that came from being with him. Nothing about him was predictable, save and easy – and paradoxically I learned to live with it, even treasure it.

Another aspect that contributes to their special aura is that they always have uncommon and exciting stories to tell. Most of them are probably greatly exaggerated or even entirely fabricated – but we are not aware of it while we are caught in our blind pursuit of them. We love listening to them talking about their dramatic earlier relationships, their messed-up childhoods, their strained relationships to their parents and siblings, the “exciting adventures” they have made in the course of their lives. My narcissist had a seemingly endless supply of dramatic and exciting stories to tell – and I was naive enough to appreciate his tales and to think of him as mysterious and special because of them. His stories led me to be all the more attracted to him and – cheesy as it may sound – I threw caution to the wind and ignored all the red flags that were staring me straight in the face. There was also a hint of mysteriousness in the messages he sent me. Sometimes he wrote long sermons – often written in a very elaborate register. Then again, he would sent me messages consisting of only a few ambiguous words. I would then rack my brain trying to figure out the intent of his message – and while doing so I often found myself in a strange state of agony and excitement. Nothing about him was unambiguous and unobscured. And while his shadiness was causing me pain, it also excited me at the same time.

One thing is very true for most narcissists: They are definitely not like your average guy. Almost everything they say or do is unusual, dramatic and inconsistent. The narcissist I dated presented me with an abundance of eccentricities. Some of them were endearing, others were causing me heartbreak and pain. He often started singing out of nowhere – which I loved. Once, after his exgirlfriend had again harassed him (and me), he told me to punch him in the stomach so he would get distraction from the emotional pain (Of course I didn’t comply). He often dragged me into deserted street corners to passionately kiss me. At times he showered me with beautiful and unusual compliments. He loved to make very philosophical comments. He wrote the most exciting, ambiguous and beautiful messages and had me reflect on them for hours. I could talk to him about my favorite books and movies, about my passions. We sometimes had long and animated conversations during which it seemed as if our minds and hearts were perfectly in tune. I couldn’t help but fall in love with every single one of these aspects – and now I curse myself for having been so dewy-eyed as to allow his eccentricities to make me turn a blind eye to all the red flags, broken promises and the exposure to unnecessary drama and pain.

To make a long story short, I was fascinated by him and found his unpredicability and mysteriousness alluring. Being with him was never boring, and I could always expect another grand story, another dramatic revelation, another unusual gesture. He had an aura of distinctiveness around him and I was extremely drawn to it. Unfortunately, this attraction and my longing for excitement made me deactivate my rationality and accept a lot of shady behavior. As I was so drawn to his mysteriousness and his unusual conduct, I repeatedly let him hurt me, break his promises and treat me with disrespect and neglect. I endured his long stretches of silence and detachment by looking forward to receiving new samples of his eccentricity. I was often close to leaving him because I could no longer endure the pain. However, something always kept me going. I couldn’t bear letting go of all the excitement that he somehow added to my life. Holding on to the excitement, however, meant having to go on enduring a lot of pain and disappointment. They were the consistent byproduct of the excitement that came with being with him. And I was willing to take up with all of it for far too long.

I’m really not proud of myself for falling for the narcissist’s special aura and the excitement he provided. I’ve come to interpret my penchant for his ambiguity and drama as a sign of weakness. However, there is no use in denying the fact that I was extremely attracted to him and that this attraction made it very hard to let go. Everything about him was dramatic, unusual and exciting, every aspect of his life and behavior was laden with mysteriousness and ambiguity. And I made it my task to figure him out. I was intrigued by it and lost my ability to think rationally in the process. I’m ashamed to admit it, but I also know that there are many others out there (especially love addicts and codependents) who made similar experiences. The narcissist’s tendency to act in a mysterious and inscrutable way has the power to get us hooked – at least it had that power in my case. Ever since I’ve cursed myself for having been so naive and weak to let his shadiness cloud my rationality.

Now that everything went down the drain – and my well-being with it – I am forced to reassess my penchant for ambiguity, mysteriousness and eccentricity. All those traits usually go hand in hand with shady and disrespectful behavior. I came to regret the fact that I was drawn to his shadiness and the excitement and drama provided by him. It is a pattern that I can also discern in my previous relationships. Right from my first boyfriend to the narcissist – with only one exception – the men I’ve been with all showed signs of eccentricity, shadiness and haughtiness. Being with the narcissist has finally opened my eyes to the fact that what I apparently crave is excitement and unpredictability – and that normalcy, stability and security do not have the same appeal to me. It is painful to admit it and it makes me doubt myself – but at least, I’ve finally been able to realize this flaw in me and I can now start to work on it. My heart has been severely broken due to my tendency to fall for toxic people and the excitement they provide. It has made me reassess my attitudes towards relationships and the faulty expectations I bring into them. I’ve finally been forced to admit to these flaws. Having experienced the pain and despair that can stem from them was an eye-opening experience. I no longer value shadiness and ambiguity, I no longer want to be blinded by excitement, I no longer want to put up with neglect and distance.

The narcissists may be able to sweep us off our feet with their passionate, unusual manners. However, what usually follows in the wake is pain and heartbreak. Often, when they reveal their true colors, it is already too late, as we are in too deep and unable to let go. I think I’ve learned my lesson: I never again want to be so starved for excitement that I’m willing to accept neglect and detachment in my pursuit of it.

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28 thoughts on “Being Drawn to the Narcissist’s Mysteriousness and Unpredictability

  1. The path of healing from a narcissistic is long and very painful.

    We are together in our similar experiences and pain, and self doubt.
    The victims of narcissistic abuse can find validating and comfort in each other.

    No one outside of the abused victims can really understand, or even believe the true stories we tell about what we went through during and especially after the relationship ended.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are definitely right. That is also why I turned to blogging and to online communities for comfort. I realized that only people who have made similar experiences are able to understand me and give me validation. Those around me don’t really know that I am still struggling because they don’t understand…They think I’m probably happy that the narcissist is no longer a part of my life. Thank you very much for your comment!

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    • I my self am going through the same experience !I am trying to break free as its causing me such distress !! Thank you for opening my eyes to wot I’m dealing with and indeed wot I must turn around for my sanity …Jo

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  2. I’m happy you’re able to admit your flaws and mistakes here. Its definitely not an easy task to admit you are wrong. Reading your explanation here I understand why I myself went down this road. I was also attracted to the allure, the mystery, the fantasy, definitely not boring at all. These issues just take time to process. Hope you’re doing well. Take care. x

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    • Thank you so much! You are right. It is not easy to admit the flaw of falling for mystery instead of security and definite commitment. I once was in a relationship with a deeply committed man. He offered stability, deep affection…there was not even a hint of inconsistency and ambiguity. It didn’t make me happy…I felt entrapped and even bored by it. It’s hard to admit that fact. I think that being with the narcissist has changed my preferences. I no longer want to be in agony due to being with an uncommitted, unavailable person. ❤

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      • I think I understand what you mean by the allure and mystery of the Narcissist versus the stability. For me, my husband is both a Narcissist and boring! At the time, I took what he offered because I was running away from my mother, another Narcissist. So either way, I lost.

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      • There is a book called “women who love too much” – Robin Norwood. Your sentence …. I once was in a relationship with a deeply committed man. He offered stability, deep affection…there was not even a hint of inconsistency and ambiguity. It didn’t make me happy…I felt entrapped and even bored by it…. can be placed on any of the chapters of that book and no one would notice any difference to the rest of the content.

        Its a great book. Mostly written fro women.
        I am a man… but it was the first book i ever read that started making sense for me on people who keep repeatedly choosing one bad partner after another bad one for a relationship. According to Robin there is always something very wrong with the birth family for someone to end up like this.
        I still have my copy of the book with me. For keep sake. And a reminder. That yes someone can heal from dramatic relationships.

        I hope you find your way out of all these quagmires…. My experience. It takes a looong time to break the habit. Wishing you all the best.

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      • Thank you so much for your comment and your kind wishes. I’ve read that book after dating the narcissist and it felt like looking in a mirror…it was an eye-opening read…and you are right: it is very hard to break the habit. It needs constant work

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  3. We face lot of transition and transformation in life and people’s behavior and do change.. A person whose thought process remains same may not grow. But this is only applicable only for betterment. U got to see if the principles of a person is worth changing or keeping intact

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  4. How right you are, narcissists *do* bring excitement into our lives and once they are gone, it all seems rather dull. I often compare being with the narcissist as being on a roller-coaster (very cliche I know but it’s true) because I was either very, very down or very, very up – there were no in-between at all. Of course that’s a very unhealthy way to live a relationship but, while the lows were soul shattering, the highs… the highs were a-ma-zing. So, yes, it is really hard to let go of it and I think we only do that once we’ve hit absolute rock bottom but it is a fact that usually the narcissist ends it and discards us before we’ve taken action ourselves. It is my theory that’s another reason why recovery is so hard after the break-up (the narcissist discarding us rather than the other way around) because we feel we did hang in there despite the pain, the doubts, the insecurities, we gave it our all, even though we knew deep down that we should end it….and yet we didn’t end it, even though we had every reason to, even though our friends told us to….and *he* is the one who discards us as if we never mattered, he leaves without a single backward glance, almost as if *we* are the ones who did something wrong. So, we feel we’ve let ourselves down because *we* should have ended it before he had a chance to, because all the signs were there and we ignored them – we feel weak and we feel stupid. We shouldn’t of course, but it takes a while to let go of the self-hatred, it did in my case anyway, I walked around for weeks telling myself and my friends that I was a “stupid, stupid person” and that I was “so stupid, I deserved everything I was going through now”. Obviously, you eventually realise that the self-hatred really doesn’t help and that it’s even slowing the recovery process. Anyway, I’ve said this to you before but I do think there’s some positive to come out of this – the fact we learn about ourselves, we analyse why we are attracted to such shady characters, why we put up with their lies and inconsistencies and that is a good thing because it will stop us from falling for another one in the future, or at least: not put up with their rubbish if we are unfortunate enough to fall for another one.
    In my case, I know perfectly well that my cold, unloving mother is at the root of my attraction to narcissists. They say you “go to what you’ve always known” and that’s certainly true in my case. Obviously my reasons are not everyone’s reasons, we are all different – but whatever the reasons that makes us attracted to narcissists, the fact we are perfect prey for them is our willingness to “try till the end”, our determination to never give up, our willingness to self-sacrifice.
    When the relationship with a narcissist ends, we have to find a way to accept that we are fundamentally caring people and that our bad experience shouldn’t change that – but we also have to understand that caring should not be wasted on people who don’t deserve it.
    Anyway, I believe I have used your post and my subsequent comment as “therapy” again. I’m sorry, but every time I read your words I feel like you’ve plucked them right out of my mind for the most part, so it kind of opens the floodgates. When I read “he often started singing out of nowhere…” I was like: no way, mine used to do that too!
    Anyway, this is probably the longest comment ever left on a post so I’m going to shut up now. Thanks for another great post, and thanks for letting me ramble on too 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    • Never apologize for the length of your comments. I love to read every single word because they are always a great encouragement and make me feel less alone. I totally agree with what you wrote. I was discarded by the narcissist in the most painful way possible. And I felt so stupid and worthless afterwards because I knew I should have been the one to end things…being discarded made me feel so small. I held on to him and invested so much into that relationship even though it was useless…and in the end I got discarded…I was close to ending things a Million times and never followed through with it. In retrospect I hated myself for being so weak.

      It’s funny how narcissists really are so alike. It amazes me to hear that your narc also started singing out of nowhere. They really are a special breed.
      Thank you again for always being so lovely ❤

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  5. Ever since my divorce it seems like I have become a sounding board for women in regards to their relationships. Your complaint is a common one. Women want the excitement of a “bad boy” but then they still want to fix the things they don’t like. To me your guy had other stuff going on and I am going to suggest that he was not ready for a commitment. When someone is not ready they are not ready and you can’t change them. What you will see is inconsistent behavior. One side pulls them close to you but once that happens the pressure and fear take over. It is very uncomfortable for both sides. I know because I am more that way now and I even have a bit of a reputation as a bad boy even though I am upfront about not wanting a committed relationship right now.

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    • You are right. He was definitely not ready for a committed relationship. I basically knew it but refused to see it. So I am very aware that I am very much to blame as well. Thank you for your comment!

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      • I don’t think you can blame yourself at all for not being able to tell that someone is not ready for commitment. A true commitment phobic will send out all kinds of signals indicating that they are ready until the fear takes over. That trait combined with narcissism is not a good combination because there is nothing inside them that makes them stop repeating the same patterns of behavior.

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  6. I can totally relate to this. Even tough I’m so tired of being pushed away and gaslighted, I feel some kind of hope, that things will change. When I met my Mr. Unavailable I had been freshly recovered from the last painful relationship. I was positive and self-aware. At the first glance Mr. Unavailable seemed to read my thoughts and so induced thoughts like “how can this be so perfect?”. I told my friends that I was so happy that I have found someone being so deeply intereted in me, giving me so much affection after the last devastating breakup. But in the moment he had won me over, he turned out to be so damn cold. I felt crashed and was asking me, what I (!!!!) had done wrong (even tough my only “problem” was that I believed in what he was telling me before –> “stupid me”). Now I often think it would be a great invention if someone created a pill that could suck the memories of this whole relationship out of my brain, I really wish I would habe never met him. And even though I do so, he still dominates my thoughts and feelings.

    Sorry for any incorrect words, I’m from Germany and English is not my first language…

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    • Thank you for sharing part of your story 🙂 it all sounds so very familiar. And you don’t need to apologize for your English. It sounds perfect to me…I’m also from Germany so I struggle with the English language as well 🙂

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  7. Good Grief! Ive been educating myself on Narcissism for about a week now after dating a man for over three years. I am an empty shell of the person I was when I first met him. Ive just read all your posts and seriously, it could have been me writing them! Your experience is identical to mine in so many ways. I’m trying to find the strength to break free from him now. I feel sick that I’ve given him so many chances and made excuses for his appalling behaviour and put up with it all for so long. But I like you was sucked in by his charm, charisma, looks, and intermittent crumbs of promise filled love. When we do spend time together he focuses on me intently, I have his undivided attention in as much as he will talk and talk and talk. But we do share many interests and spending time with him is fun, interesting, exciting and loving. But the constant let downs, the triangulation with an ex, the excuses, making himself the victim, not acknowledging the emotional effect his actions are having on me, not apologising, blaming me for neediness and so it goes on. Last week he let me down by text when I was almost on his doorstep and then turned it on me by saying that his earlier text when he said he’d love to see me tonight and where should we go was not an arrangement and that I’d made assumptions. All the research I’ve been doing is finally lifting the scales from my eyes and I’m seeing his behaviour anew. I need to take back my life and move on. I hope you are recovering from your experience. One can only understand the madness, pain, confusion and loss of self these people induce if you’ve been through it yourself.

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    • Thank you so much for sharing your experiences! I wish you a lot of strength to disentangle yourself from your narcissist. It is hard and painful to let them go and reclaim ownership of yourself. But it is also rewarding ☺

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