Have you ever had a conversation with a narcissist who makes no sense? The narcissist begins to speak, and before you know it, you have no idea what they are talking about. Their logic spins in circles without ever going somewhere. The words continue to flow, but they are meaningless! This refers to as a narcissistic word salad. It may be perplexing, annoying, and downright aggravating, and it’s a specialty offered out by any self-respecting narcissist daily.
When confront with anything they do not want to discuss or when they are called out, the narcissist employs a word salad. You may have concerns about their conduct or the relationship, or they could instigate a quarrel or say something hurtful to you. It makes no difference how or who began it; they distort your words and confuse you to the point where you doubt yourself and your views.
In this post, you will discover what is word salad in narcissism, examples of narcissistic word salad, and how to respond to it. Let’s begin with a definition of narcissistic word salad.
- 1 What is Word Salad?
- 2 What Is Narcissistic Word Salad?
- 3 Signs Of Narcissistic Word Salad
- 4 How do narcissists word salad?
- 5 Narcissistic Word Salad Example
- 6 How To Respond To Word Salad?
- 7 The Ending Note
What is Word Salad?
People suffering from psychiatric and/or neurological disorders were once referred to as “word salad.” For example, when someone with schizophrenia utilizes a series of unconnected phrases, psychologists refer to it as “schizophasia.”
What Is Narcissistic Word Salad?
What is the word salad in narcissism? The term “word salad” refers to a cyclical linguistic strategy employed by one person to ensure that conversations never end well for the other. It is a method of influencing another person’s opinions or ideas, emotional response, or access to information.
A “narcissist word salad” depicts the narcissist’s knee-jerk flip-flopping. They both want to be lovable and admirable while simultaneously holding power. So they use the word salad to trick you into doing what they want and idolize them.
The term narcissistic word salad refers to a misunderstanding of a significant psychological concept. Instead of referring to an involuntary vocal manifestation of a serious mental disease, such as schizophrenia, it is being a slang term for a sort of narcissistic speech that is intentionally perplexing. Listeners find narcissistic word salad incredibly annoying because the narcissist is avoiding being incorrect or having to accept responsibility for anything by utilizing circular reasoning, blatant falsehoods, denial, or mischaracterizations of previous events.
Why do narcissists use the word salad?
When frightened, narcissists will blurt out a string of phrases that make no sense. This is a gaslighting strategy used to intentionally confuse you. This method is narcissistic abusers to make their victims doubt their views and memories of the abuse.
When a narcissist feels a threat, word salad often utilizes as a defensive technique, especially if you’re coming too near to the truth.
The word also indicates how frequently narcissists contradict themselves. They will do this if it fits their objective of having you doubt the veracity of what you have heard. This manipulative technique can be very devastating to the emotional health of a survivor or abuse victim – it’s one method they gaslight you.
Signs Of Narcissistic Word Salad
Here are some warning signs that you’re dealing with a narcissistic word salad.
Lack of logic
You’ll discover a jumbled mess of unconnected words and notions, including inconsistencies and fragmented statements, as well as odd irrelevant, and unplanned comments hurled at you.
The result and very purposeful goal, of this, is to render you completely unable of tracking the narcissist and holding them accountable for their behavior.
Repetition and circular conversations
Why do narcissists talk in circles? Because they aim to perplex you to the point where you leave scratching your head. Also, to alter the subject to get you off track. Linearity is something narcissist actively avoids in conversation, especially when a topic is brought up that challenges them or seeks to hold them accountable for their actions.
By impeding the logical evolution of a point of view from A to B to Z, the point is never stated, and responsibility is rendered null and void. Repetition and circular dialogues that lead nowhere are crucial approaches. This method not only frustrates your argument but also frustrates you into surrendering, abandoning further attempts to fix the issue at hand. As well as expressing to you that YOU are the problem; otherwise, the poor irritated narc would not need to keep repeating themselves!
Narcissistic Personality Disorder is characterized by a collection of persistent behaviors that are supported by cognitive mistakes. One of these is the tendency to overgeneralize, which is caused by their black-and-white thinking, which is caused by a process known as splitting.’
Splitting is the failure to see that individuals (and objects, events, etc.) are made up of positives and disadvantages, strengths and faults. The narcissist is unable to mentally merge these two thoughts into a single totality. This suggests that their worldview is polarised. This is seen in the sharp contrasts of idealization vs. devaluation and disposal, for example.
Projecting and blaming
When a narcissist projects their defects onto you, this is called projection. Whatever is wrong with them is attributed to you. When their own characteristics are thrown at you, you know it’s occurring. ‘You’re so self-centered,’ they say, ‘all you do is lie and deny,’ ‘there’s something wrong with you, you’re psychologically unstable,’ and so on.
Likewise, any interpersonal problems must be the fault of others. Particularly yours. They will go to any length to create a rationale or excuse for why ‘the thing’ is your fault. You blame everything, no matter how insane their finger-pointing is.
Gaslighting and denial
There is no real proof that is strong and convincing enough that the narcissist, in their arrogance, will reject its existence. They make strong remarks one second, then say, ‘I never said that,’ the next. They do an act in front of your eyes just to maintain your focus and declare, ‘that never occurred.’
You can show them indisputable proof, such as a written document in their own hand or video footage of them doing something, and they will say, ‘It wasn’t me.’ Denial is all about shielding oneself from reality owing to one’s reluctance to accept who and what one is. It’s also gaslighting at work. Denying facts repeatedly has the pleasant consequence of making you doubt your perspective on reality and whether you are, in fact, the problem.
Everything is about winning and losing
Listen to the narc’s words with as much objectivity as possible. Nothing that comes out of their mouth will be about finding answers or developing relationships. Their language will focus on proving that they are correct and you are incorrect. Wrong, wrong, and again. Every contact is a competition for the pathological narcissist. Whatever you say, they will engage in a verbal fight to prove you are incorrect.
They’ll do this on every statement you make, even the little ones since if they make you incorrect about everything, you must definitely be wrong about whatever worries you have about their behavior. Not only that, but this is plainly classic supply. They believe that by making you constantly incorrect, they can prove that they are always right.
How do narcissists word salad?
How can narcissistic people blame you for everything and make you feel guilty?
- Talking in circles: when they constantly bring it back to something fantastic they did, or something you haven’t done, instead of what needs to be addressed.
- Derailing: they have a selective memory, whatever faults they do are unintentionally forgotten, never happened, or your fault, everything nice they did should be remembered forever. Any good you did is forgotten, ignored, or they’ll take credit for, any mistakes you make are exaggerated and brought up whenever they need to use it against you, a narcissist will derail the conversation from the intended topic onto something that works in their favor, either guilt-tripping you, or blaming you, so you start defending, explaining, or justifying yourself to them.
- Diversion: akin to derailing, diverts the subject to completely other issues. They will avoid discussing the matter at hand by using distraction. They try to sidestep the subject, go around it, and ignore it.
- Deflecting: when they seek to divert the subject away from what they have done and toward what you have done to anger you, blame or shame you, insult you, or entice you into reacting to them. trap you into defending yourself to them, justifying yourself to them, so they can play the victim and elicit sympathy from you for what they’ve done to you.
- Triangulation: bringing someone else into the discourse to create a diversion. “Your mother believes, my ex would never, your friend did.” So you start judging yourself based on the falsehoods a narcissist tells you about others.
They can blend all of these strategies in their word salad until they reach the desired result, or they become silent on you. They can lie, deny, deflect, project, interrupt, talk over you, blame-shift, and then pout passively.
Narcissistic Word Salad Example
When a narcissist detects that they are losing you, they will use texting to overload you with words—usually a heady combination of almost-apologies, imprecise promises, and passive-aggressive insults. Here are some examples of narcissistic word salads:
“Hello, Babe. I’ve been thinking about us and how fantastic we are together all morning. If I’ve been as self-centered as you claim. Please know that I’m devoted to putting you first if you put me first. We get along so well while we’re both working hard.
But I’ve found that if I slack off, it’s because you’ve said or done something harmful to me. Not passing judgment, simply telling the facts. You know we’ve got something unique, and I need you to recognize it and show that you’re as committed to making this work as I am. I feel like you’re drifting away from me, and I’m not sure why, but you’re wasting our time by not being there for us. At the very least, meet me halfway and put out the effort I am putting forward. I know we can have the kind of relationship that most people would envy.
“Why is that lady messaging you beautiful photographs of herself?” says Target.
Narcissist: “Well, you still communicate with your ex-husband.”
“What does it have to do with anything?” asks the target. I never speak with my ex when necessary, and even then, we solely discuss the kids.”
“Well, I don’t like it when you talk to him, but I don’t say anything to you about it.” I believe you still desire him. I mean, how do I know I can put my trust in you? For all I know, you may be having close with him.”
What Triggers The Narcissistic Word Salad?
When healthy individuals try to settle a conflict, the objective is to find a middle ground that benefits both parties. This strategy supports awareness, courtesy, and open communication. Through a process of mutual listening and sharing, compromises are progressively worked out. The desire to achieve mutually beneficial results works because there is a real concern for the other person and effort in finding answers, even if it is frequently challenging.
This is not the case with aggressive narcissists. The NPD worldview lacks the characteristics and incentives required for collaborative and compassionate engagement. Attempts to deal with any issues that may cause you trouble, no matter how you do it, are exceedingly harmful to the narcissist. This is due to the narcissist’s whole existence being centered on upholding the false-self belief system that they developed. Anything that calls the narcissist’s authority, dominance, superiority, or entitlement into doubt forbids and sets up defense mechanisms.
As a result, every attempt to hold the narcissist accountable, or any reluctance to comply with a specific demand, results in a plate of word salad. The machinations hidden in the word salad are intended to shield the narcissist from confronting a reality that may be uncomfortable. To retain their faulty beliefs, they shift complete responsibility for any problem to you. The narcissist trigger word operates in this manner.
What to avoid circular conversation?
You may avoid the following events and avoid the futile dispute with the narcissist.
- Don’t repeat anything that has already been spoken.
- Don’t clarify or react to a question if you’ve already addressed it.
- Do not attempt to convince the other person to change their mind. Their thoughts, feelings, and beliefs are all their own.
- Don’t try to influence the other person’s emotions. Not attempt to make them feel guilty, sorry, or empathetic.
- Instead of addressing the other person’s conduct, attitudes, or deeds, concentrate on explaining your desires and feelings.
- Don’t wait for agreement or consensus to end the conversation. It is reasonable and appropriate for two persons to have different conclusions, interpretations, and discoveries regarding the same experiences.
How To Respond To Word Salad?
You can react to word salad in the following ways:
- Recognize the repeated pattern. Recognize that you’re having a conversation that’s going nowhere.
- Accept that feelings aren’t inherently good or bad; they’re just what they are. Feelings are influenced by circumstances, emotions, brain chemistry, and a variety of other things. You have no control over how you feel. Neither can the individual suffering from a personality disorder; it’s only a natural reaction to what you’ve gone through.
- Switch your tone from facts to feelings. Describe your feelings rather than the other person’s surface. Don’t remark, “I think you’re lying.” That is not an emotion. That is only one point of view. “I’m afraid” or “I’m hurt,” for example. You don’t have to justify yourself; just say it. The good thing about expressing your feelings is that no one, no matter how hard they try, can disagree with you. No one knows or owns your feelings but you.
- Finish the talk respectfully and calmly. “I need a break,” you may say, or “Let’s discuss this tomorrow.”
The Ending Note
These word salad exchanges are intended to punish you for calling them out, and they will continue until you give up and agree that they were correct all along. You will feel emotionally exhausted and as if your problems were never acknowledged, leaving you with no resolution.
As a result, you avoid engaging in conversations or bringing up topics that concern you because you know the outcome will be the same. You know that nothing will be done, that your sentiments will not be recognized, and that you will leave persuaded that the problem is yours. They have conditioned you to remain mute and not challenge them, allowing them to maintain power over you.
Take care of yourself whether you’re dealing with a narcissistic word salad or not. Working with a therapist or, at the very least, setting firm boundaries can be necessary.