Smear Campaign — Narcissist’s Favorite Weapon

Smear Campaign — Narcissist’s Favorite Weapon

Smear Campaign — Narcissist’s Favorite Weapon smear campaign — narcissist’s favorite weapon

The best way to understand a narcissistic relationship is to understand these three words: control, power, and manipulation. A narcissist is someone who will use all the tricks in the book to manipulate you so that they can control you for their selfish needs.

The smear campaign is one of those manipulation techniques where a narcissist will tarnish your reputation to people around you, making themselves look like victims instead of the abusive individuals they truly are. They often employ this tactic during the discard phase and sometimes during the devaluation phase of the relationship. They might tell your friends or family that you are crazy, abusive, or engaging in promiscuous behavior — anything that contradicts what those close to you know about you.

And why do people fall for these lies? A narcissist crafts a superficial charm that grooms people to trust what the narcissist says, similar to how victims are groomed in the early stages of the narcissistic relationship. According to Shahida Arabi, the narcissist builds a group of people (a narcissistic harem) who validate their opinions, cater to their constant need for attention, and stroke their ego.

This creates a perfect environment for the smear campaign, bolstered by your own support network. The finishing touch of a smear campaign involves the narcissist provoking you to elicit a reaction, which then becomes the cornerstone of the campaign. This makes the campaign more believable to those around you, reinforcing the false narrative of your ‘abusive’ and ‘crazy’ nature, and you will find it hard to escape its effects.

It’s a cruel technique, but manipulators who wear a public mask will go to great lengths to save their own image while tarnishing yours. The height of the smear campaign is during the discard phase when the narcissist reinforces the false belief that you were not “worthy” of being in a relationship with them.

This belief is perpetuated by the harem or even your support network, who might say things like, “How could she/he do something like that to such a wonderful man/woman (the narcissist)? She/he (the victim) doesn’t deserve someone good like this; she/he really belongs elsewhere.” Ironically, this is how the narcissist considers themselves to have ‘won’ the game.

The smear campaign works effectively for a narcissistic person because it aims to:

Portray you as the abuser in the relationship and deflect any accusations of abuse that you might have raised to your friends or family.

Provoke you into responding, which further solidifies the false perception of your instability, especially when you try to defend yourself in the eyes of the narcissist’s supporters.

Isolate you from your support network, leaving you with nowhere to turn since no one believes your side of the story.

Protect the narcissist’s false self-image and clear their name, garnering sympathy from everyone, including their new supply who becomes their ‘shelter’ from you, ‘the abuser.’

Hoover you back into the narcissistic relationship as you struggle to reconcile the rumors about you, effectively trapping you in the relationship.

How to Counter a Narcissist’s Smear Campaign

I. Do Not Engage — Silence Is Golden

While you may have the urge to clear your name and defend yourself, doing so will only complicate matters. You might be surprised to find that close friends or family members you trusted have sided with the narcissist’s version of events. A narcissist’s manipulation tactics are designed to hook people into believing their story, much like they did when they lured you into the relationship. The best approach is to not engage with the lies, rendering the campaign powerless because the intended target is not participating. Distance yourself from the campaign and live your life as if nothing is happening. Remember, the truth will eventually emerge; lies can travel far, but the truth is enduring. When the narcissist realizes you aren’t reacting, they might intensify the campaign, but there’s a limit to how far they can go. Stay strong and resolute — do not engage. If the urge to react strikes, channel it into writing in your journal.

II. Live Your Truth

Remember, anyone can say whatever they want, but you alone know the reality of the situation. Don’t let others’ opinions define you. Manipulators may shake your sense of reality, but you possess the power to see through their lies. Remind yourself that what others say about you is often a projection of their own inner selves. If you can, find humor in the extent people will go to manipulate you. Viewing the smear campaign as a farce can bring laughter to your life, without shaking your core identity.

III. Use It as Motivation to Thrive

Consider the smear campaign a motivation to distance yourself from the manipulator. It’s a clear sign that you need to sever ties with someone who tarnishes your name to save their own. If you were previously in denial about the relationship, let this be the wake-up call that they’ve gone too far and can’t retract the damaging words they’ve spoken about you. Use this realization to build a fulfilling life for yourself.

IV. Avoid Mutual Friends (Their Support Network)

Where possible, steer clear of those who support the narcissist’s lies. This will spare you from constantly hearing about the campaign. It will also reveal your true friends. If a ‘friend’ readily believed the narcissist’s narrative, you’ll know who stands by you. Avoiding these enablers will prevent triggering reactions to the lies.


Enduring a smear campaign is painful, and you might feel isolated from the world, especially when those close to you side with the narcissist. Despite the urge to react, remember that silence, living your truth, and avoiding triggering situations are your tools to counteract the smear campaign.

Refuse to play the narcissist’s game. Focus on self-care, self-love, and distance yourself from their lies and manipulative tactics. You deserve a better life, and if you’re willing to share, there are people out there who will listen to your story, even when those close to you have chosen the narcissist’s side.

Note from the Author

If you’re ready and you’d like my help with healing, finding peace in life and breaking free from these toxic patterns (in less than 2 months) , then you can book a FREE BREAKTHROUGH CALL with me HERE. Happy healing 💙💙. Feel free to share and comment! Use this information with caution, it comes from my own thoughts & bias, experiences and research😊.

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Edwin Bii
Edwin Bii

I'm Edwin Bii, a trained advanced conversational hypnotherapist (ACH) and Mind Shifting Coach from Kenya offering mental health support, and life coaching to help you crush your goalsand overcome your problems. Together, we'll navigate challenges, build self-awareness, and create a happier, healthier you. Let's unlock your potential.

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