As a survivor of multiple smear campaigns, I can honestly say that they aren’t much fun. Rather, they are an intense campaign designed by a person with narcissistic personality disorder, to humiliate an opponent while simultaneously intending to elevate the narcissist. It actually requires audacity, and a lot of skill, manipulation, and persistence to successfully pull one off and for the victim, it can be a shocking and damaging experience.
Always expect a smear campaign following the grand finale with a Narcissist… not that you necessarily know they’re a narcissist at the time.
A smear campaign is exactly what it sounds like – it’s someone assassinating your name and character among your friends and family. It’s even worse if you’re a politician, a political contender or a public figure, because they also do so in your own community, which makes it even more extreme and damaging for some victims.
There are various motivations for a narcissist to launch a smear campaign. Quite often it’s to appear like a victim rather than the selfish, self-involved and trouble-making person (or people) they are. In this way the smear campaign is a form of damage control. A narcissist uses it once they fear that they could be exposed.
Smear campaigns are frequently used to depict the victim as something they’re not. For example, they might say the victim is a cheater, home-wrecker, or a poor parent.
By fabricating a sequence of falsehoods, exaggerations, half-truths, suspicions, and false charges about the victim’s conduct, the perpetrator works to destroy the victim’s credibility and sanity… and their entire life.
These aren’t always the only reasons they create a smear campaign. In some extraordinary cases, it can also be done with the intention of forcing you to fall back on them given there aren’t any other options.
Think about it. If everyone you know, including family, friends and your community have essentially ‘cut you off’, and the narcissist just happens to be there ready and waiting to replace those damaged relationships as a ‘hero’, then they get what they wanted all along.
The reasons why a smear campaign can be so effective at harming the victim are because the victim loses faith in all friends and their support system, as well as in people in general; for many victims, they might feel alone, scared, and unsure what to do.
My first smear campaign happened at the age of 22 and yes, I felt these feelings. Though these days, not so much. I’ve developed resilience and strength because I know what it’s all about. I’ve already been there… so I approach every new smear campaign (yes, it’s a common event in my life), with knowledge and experience that helps me mentally cope.
Given I’m also a public figure, I can also communicate publicly and accurately to inform or alert others, while correcting misguided judgments and opinions. I’ve even been known to reprimand the perpetrator/s using my own media platform. How handy.
Narcissists never disappear silently or gently into the night. In many cases, they instead leave nothing but the devastation and destruction of the victim’s reputation and relationships behind, and for weaker individuals who lack the experience and knowledge about what to do, and how to approach and or change this, it can be horrendous and alter the course of their life.