A narcissist usually starts smearing you and defaming you long before you realize it. And by the time you notice something is going on, they have done irreparable damage. It is amazing how many people will listen to gossip about you and never bother to warn you. It’s even worse that many people will believe lies about you without ever asking for your side of the story or questioning if they are true.
I went through years of smearing with my sociopath ex. It finally calmed down as more and more people realized what he really was. Of course, I never got apologies from the people who furthered his lies. They just said “oops” and stopped trashing me. More recently, I went through another smaller smear campaign, and found out pretty quickly because the leader sent me mixed up hate mails and other people warned me. But still, you rarely know the full extent of what a narcissist is doing to try to destroy your reputation.
There are clues, though!
1. People who used to interact with you suddenly stop talking to you or disappear.
Sure sometimes people get busy or bored, or move on, but you can usually tell when someone is giving you the cold shoulder after previously being friendly. You never had any kind of argument with them, but they seem angry about something…and you don’t know what is going on.
2. People you don’t know show up and start making questionably rude comments to you, or are outright nasty.
You might not know who these people are, but they sure think they know something about you. When strangers start insulting you and you don’t know where they came from, a narcissist with a smear campaign is probably behind it.
3. You get confusing and unexpected hate messages.
Huh? Someone is mad at you, but you can’t figure out why, and you have no idea what they are talking about. They are mad about something…but you aren’t in on the story because they heard something false from someone else.
4. You overhear or see someone gossiping about you on social media, and you know it’s not true.
Where did that come from? You know you didn’t do it. You know no one saw you do it, (since you didn’t do it,) so why are people telling stories about something that you know never happened? Those lies came from someone….
5. You suddenly lose friends or followers.
Sometimes people are just acquaintances who clean out their friends list and decide you don’t make the cut. That’s fine. Respect their boundaries. But when you see this happen a lot of all of a sudden, you can be pretty sure someone is bad mouthing you and telling people to avoid you. Too bad the people who ditch you don’t bother to ask you about the real story….
2 thoughts on “Are you being smeared without knowing it?”
OMG! I have now been divorced from the narcissist for 1 year after 33 years of marriage. I did all to make it work. The sacrifices are too many to explain. I have read your post for years and been supportive silently of your service to society exposing the “secret violence” of narcissism. It is a shame that even when people are exposed to the truth that you reveal they refuse to accept that this can actually happen. That people you know at church, down the street, in your work are actually like this at their home with the people in their families-the people they have promised to love and cherish and care for above all others in this world. These narcissist are evil beyond words. They destroy with innuendo, demeaning side comments, lies that include one drop of truth with 99 drops of cruel manipulation of facts, minds and truth to whole groupings of society that embrace them with whole hearts because they represent what they really want to hear- only happy talk and explanations that sound good to their ears-not truth. The truth about what these people do is so odorous and repugnant that 999 out of a 1000 do NOT want to hear or believe because they might have to do something, admitting they’ve been lied to. They might have to admit they have cooperated with this person. They might have to admit they might even have this in THEIR family because it sound so very familiar, and that would mean they would have to do something about it rather than put their head in the sand for years. So let’s condemn the ones who stand up and say “HEY! This is happening and we need to stand together. We need to expose this and support and VALIDATE