Projection – A Typical Trait of a Toxic Person

Dale Ingraham shared an article from Shahida Arabi recently which included this characteristic of abusers. I am not familiar enough with Arabi to recommend her material, but she certainly nails it in this statement about “projection.”

She calls the abuser a “toxic” person and that is a very accurate term. Wicked people are toxic to others. Poison. As long as we are in some kind of relationship with them, they are poisoning us. I have written elsewhere that abuse is murder. It is a slow but sure toxic poisoning.

In this case (projection) the abuser is “chronically unwilling” to admit fault. By nature they blame-shift to their victim/target. I particularly like Arabi’s closing statement: “you don’t have to live in someone else’s cesspool of dysfunction.” Cut ties as soon as you can.

Listen to Arabi tell it:

One sure sign of toxicity is when a person is chronically unwilling to see his or her own shortcomings and uses everything in their power to avoid being held accountable for them. This is known as projection. Projection is a defense mechanism used to displace responsibility of one’s negative behavior and traits by attributing them to someone else. It ultimately acts as a digression that avoids ownership and accountability.

While we all engage in projection to some extent, according to Narcissistic Personality clinical expert Dr. Martinez-Lewi, the projections of a narcissist are often psychologically abusive. Rather than acknowledge their own flaws, imperfections and wrongdoings, malignant narcissists and sociopaths opt to dump their own traits on their unsuspecting suspects in a way that is painful and excessively cruel. Instead of admitting that self-improvement may be in order, they would prefer that their victims take responsibility for their behavior and feel ashamed of themselves. This is a way for a narcissist to project any toxic shame they have about themselves onto another.

For example, a person who engages in pathological lying may accuse their partner of fibbing; a needy spouse may call their husband “clingy” in an attempt to depict them as the one who is dependent; a rude employee may call their boss ineffective in an effort to escape the truth about their own productivity.

Narcissistic abusers love to play the “blameshifting game.” Objectives of the game: they win, you lose, and you or the world at large is blamed for everything that’s wrong with them. This way, you get to babysit their fragile ego while you’re thrust into a sea of self-doubt. Fun, right?

Solution? Don’t “project” your own sense of compassion or empathy onto a toxic person and don’t own any of the toxic person’s projections either. As manipulation expert and author Dr. George Simon (2010) notes in his book In Sheep’s Clothing, projecting our own conscience and value system onto others has the potential consequence of being met with further exploitation.

Narcissists on the extreme end of the spectrum usually have no interest in self-insight or change. It’s important to cut ties and end interactions with toxic people as soon as possible so you can get centered in your own reality and validate your own identity. You don’t have to live in someone else’s cesspool of dysfunction. [thoughtcatalog.com]

 

6 thoughts on “Projection – A Typical Trait of a Toxic Person

  1. Warrior Woman

    Some abusers are so good that they accuse the victim of projection before the victim even has time to process what’s happening and/or every time they are confronted with truth.

    That’s what I was accused of (projection) along with being insecure, unattractive, horrible at almost everything I attempted, a bad driver, stupid and many more horrible things.

    When an abuser criticizes you just believe the opposite and you’ll have the truth. My abuser wanted to diminish me and all my strengths so he attacked things I was good at. That’s what these evil monsters do. They do this for fun because they enjoy it.

    They are murderers just like their spiritual father. Some murders kill swiftly others choose to destroy another human slowly. That’s what most domestic abusers do —slowly destroy their prey enjoying the process.

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  2. anonymous

    I was accused of projection, too. I did project somewhat, in that, I thought the abuser was similar to me, that he was sincere, honest, God-fearing, upright, kind, caring, loving, and trustworthy. Nothing could be further from the truth.

    I hear you, Warrior Woman, in that my abuser told me so many similar things. How many women have been called ‘crazy’ so many times they become convinced they are indeed insane and the gaslighting goes on and on.

    Abusers are murderers. Some murder slowly and others go for the quick kill, but either way, there is destruction, irreparable harm, life-altering injuries, and sometimes the gunshot to the head execution style ‘finish’. Either way, battered and abused women are wrecked because the abusers make them into that.

    Thankfully, this life matters not. It’s just a blink of the eye before we get to go to our heavenly home and be with Jesus and bask in God’s glory. Let’s all run the race and finish strong, holding unto our faith and clinging to the Cross. Doesn’t really matter how mangled the devil’s agent (the abuser/batterer) left the victim, so long as she finishes the race, with her soul intact, clinging to her faith. 🙂

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  3. Warrior Woman

    Wow anonymous well spoken!!! So sorry you went thru similar torture that I endured. I pray we all will stand tall in victory as we look with triumph on our enemies. No matter what they wished upon us—let their violence fall back onto their own heads. Let the destruction and desolation they wanted for us to come upon them, and let them know it was because of their own evil deeds. Amen

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  4. Warrior Woman

    Food for thought

    Jeremiah 30:16
    ‘Therefore all who devour you will be devoured; And all your adversaries, every one of them, will go into captivity; And those who plunder you will be for plunder, And all who prey upon you I will give for prey.

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  5. Warrior Woman

    “”Behold, I am going to deal at that time With all your oppressors, I will save the lame And gather the outcast, And I will turn their shame into praise and renown In all the earth.”
    ‭‭Zephaniah‬ ‭3:19‬ ‭NASB‬‬

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    1. Anonymous

      thanks for the encouraging Bible verses, Warrior Woman! Things are so difficult, so painful and wrenching. people make so many assumptions about the victim-target and love to hate on her, yet she’d this injured, damaged, traumatized, praying for death, mangled, wreck of a person as it is because of the abuser and his ilk. as if life isn’t challenging enough, then there’s the gauntlet to run that the abuser and his many allies setup for her to run and she just gets dogpiled by so many. a person really has to have lived it to really get it and know what horrors are being inflicted on the abused and how much she is up against and how many of society harshly judge her.

      Pastor Crippen has a sermon on SermonAudio back in 2013 which contains an excerpt from Trauma and Recovery, which is helpful. I don’t believe in the diagnosis of BPD, as so many are just mangled battered women who the medical community wants to pathologize, never having endured the horrors and trauma and abuse she has had inflicted on her again and again and when society is harsh and condemning and quick to dogpile on her, it magnifies all the harms all the more and the abuser’s allies’ make sure to inflict even more injuries on her.

      Good, decent, really lovely, kind, gentle, loving people get the worst in society. I am abhorred as to how badly the best people are treated. So many of us live horrible lives, and our loved ones suffer, and it’s just ruination, devastation, and outward ripples of trauma, abuse, and harm.

      Thankfully, in heaven, if we persist and don’t suicide, as so many abusers try their hardest to induce such on their targets (as they don’t think they can get away with murdering her so they go the other route of inducing suicide — which is murder, but ‘hands off’ so to say, in terms of the criminal code) and make it to the end of the race, enduring, then we’ll get to join Jesus and live in a new world, free of abusers, predators, wicked bullies, and other evil people. No more tears, trauma, anguish, sorrow, harm, violation, deprivation, victimization, no more sadism, no more hunger, fear, or torment as inflicted by evildoers because they’ll be nowhere to be found and it’ll be God and God’s chosen people. Heaven-ward. May we be so blessed as to be sped on our journeys there.

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