Narcissistic Supply- An Explanation of Character Assassination and Smear Campaigns

I speak and write about body language and how to deal with difficult people including malignant narcissists. 

"Narcissistic Supply"- Malignant Narcissists (Those on the extreme end of the spectrum.) can't stand for someone to see behind their mask for who they truly are so they attack the character of anyone who is a threat to the false self. Think of people in your life or in the news who have recently attacked someone who outed their bad behavior.

Psychopaths and Malignant Narcissists do not have normal emotions. They can act as if they do, in fact, some are extremely good actors with a facade that makes them appear highly charismatic, powerful and energetic. But the energy they project is not really theirs, they get it from the energy and emotions of others. 

They may seem healthy and happy if they are fed a supply of attention. But, but if the flow stops they describe feeling like they are in dark empty void. So, they are constantly hunting for what researchers call the “Narcissistic supply" of other people’s emotions, to feed themselves and fill their void. Do you know someone personally or any celebrities or public figures life that must have constant attention? Do you know anyone who acts out, attacks and or creates tension and drama, pitting people against each other and dividing people? Harvey Weinstein is perfect example of someone who craved attention and drama.

Psychopaths/Malignant Narcissists (PN"S) search for “Narcissistic Targets"/ "Narcissistic Victims" that can give those lots of attention and emotion.  At some point a healthy target who is associated with a Psychopath/Narcissist may see the Psychopath/Narcissists for who they really are. Their "Narcissistic Mask” will come down. Being revealed for who they really are is Psychopath/Malignant Narcissists
biggest fear so they are prepared for this. It has happened to them before. Their false self-image/mask is everything to them. They must bribe, threaten, cast off and or destroy anyone who knows threatens their false self.  

If the target is a threat thetypically becomes the victim of a "Smear campaign" or "Character Assassination" to destroy their ability to be what the target should be, a credible source of truthful information about the Psychopath/Malignant Narcissists. 
Remember the PN gains supply from the group and they are terrified of loosing a steady supply so they must not just destroy the target they mus eject the truth know-er from the group/family/work place/political world so that the PN's can continue to gain supply from the group/family/workplace/political/world.

The Character Assignation and or Smear Campaign is carried out by the PN creating 
often vicious lies about the target who has unmasked them. Oddly,they often seem like they are following some play book in their campaign as the lies they plant often are the PNS very behaviors! If they are stalkers of their target they will lie and claim their target is a stalker. If the they use their connections to attack their targets they will lie and claim their target used their connections to attack. If the  PN's are unstable and emotional or crazy they will lie and say their target is crazy. Though they love admiration and attention PN's may even get more supply if they are successful in their character assassination as their victim is made to appear like someone who did them harm and the Psychopath/Narcissists gains a steady supply of sympathy from the group. 

Again the Malignant Narcissists have planned for possible attack by grooming the group long before they assassinate the character of the victim/target. They have 'seeded" (google "Seeding", "Lie seeding") the group with negative information about the target and primed the group gifting them dinners, entry into exclusive parties, clubs, events, trips, jobs. 

If the group allows the Narcissist/Psychopath to get away with attacking the victim/target and lets the attacker stay in the group they show the attacker their bad behaviors will be tolerated. This is called “Normalization” and it eats away at the morals of a group and/or shows that the group has little or no morals. 

The group becomes the Malignant Narcissist tertiary supply and they will create drama in the group, claiming victim-hood and 
saying how badly they were treated by their target!!! Their victim who saw behind the mask is labeled the bad guy. The Malignant Narcissist's continues to feed off the group often by triangulating group members pitting them against each other. The Psychopath/Narcissist craves supply!

Patti Wood, MA - The Body Language Expert. For more body language insights go to her website at Check out Patti's website for her new book "SNAP, Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma" at