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Blame: It Must Be Assigned

If you’re living with a narcissist, prepare to be his or her “fall guy.” No matter what happens…it’s your fault.

I’m Sorry!

I had a habit. I said, “I’m sorry” all the time.

If a drain got clogged, I was sorry. If I forgot an item at the grocery store, I was sorry. If I was tired, I found myself whispering, “I’m sorry.” Sorry, sorry, sorry. I always took responsibility. I was also so, so sorry.

Luckily, my husband called me out on it. A couple years ago, the kitchen drain got clogged. “I’m sorry,” I moaned. “I’ve let some food debris go down the drain. It’s my fault.”

“What!?!” His face wore an incredulous, puzzled expression. “It doesn’t matter how it got clogged. I’ll have it running in a jiffy…and quit saying ‘sorry’ all the time.”

Light Glimmers

Slowly, I’ve started to “git it.” Normal people don’t need nor want to pin blame for every unfortunate thing that happens.

Narcissists do.

In my three decades living in a narcissistic home, the role of “fall guy” just naturally fell to me. And with a conscience as soft as rose petals, I always accepted the blame. After all, I was never perfect, so yeah, everything was my fault.

If the kitchen drain clogged, yeah, I’d s’pose I’d let a speck of food debris or a hair or two go down the drain. But I was sorry.

Read all about how sorry I was in my article False Guilt: #SorryNotSorry.

And it wasn’t just household things that were my fault. Hell no!

When I was a kid and classmates were mean to me, I was always asked if I’d done something to them. What could I do differently to make the kids stop being mean to me?

When coworkers got their undies in a bundle, it was the same thing. What had I done? What could I do differently so they would straighten up and fly right.

Hell! I often thought that if I ever got attacked and raped, it would be my fault for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

A New Fall Guy

After I moved out, the narcissists lost their fall guy. So a new one got assigned. In an email from Mom, she mentioned how she needed to be more careful (over and above her extreme carefulness) because the kitchen sink had gotten plugged…again.

And then it hit me! In my absence, it’s now her fault. She’s the new fall guy.

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Blame Must Be Assigned

In my experience, narcissists get mad if everything isn’t perfect 100% of the time.

If the minutiae of humdrum everyday life, like running a snake down a clogged drain, intrudes on their precious time, they get mad.

If they have to wait for anyone, they get impatient.

If anyone else has a problem, they get frustrated.

Anger, impatience, frustration, blame, lectures, shame…different sides of the same rotten dice.

Just remember: nothing is ever their fault, so…blame must be assigned.

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This article is for informational and educational purposes only. Under no circumstances should it be considered therapy nor replace therapy and treatment. If you are feeling suicidal, thinking about hurting yourself, or are concerned that someone you know may be in danger of hurting himself or herself, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255). It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is staffed by certified crisis response professionals. The content of these blogs and all blogs written by Lenora Thompson are merely her opinion. If you are in need of help, please contact qualified mental health professionals.
Blame: It Must Be Assigned

Lenora Thompson

Lenora Thompson is a syndicated Huffington Post freelance writer and food blogger. Her readers call her the "Edward Snowden" and "Wikileaks" of narcissism because of her no-holds-barred-take-no-prisoners approach to writing about narcissism. “Narcissism Meets Normalcy” is the real-life, ongoing story of her healing journey from being held “hostage” by a multi-generational, cult-like narcissistic family. It's gritty and real, bloody and bruised, humorous and sarcastic. Lenora Thompson considers herself a “whistleblower,” shining a spotlight on narcissistic abuse so others can also claim their freedom and experience healing. To learn more about Lenora, her husband Michael's heroic battle with Pulmonary Alveolar Proteinosis and to read her writings about food, please visit Thank you!

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APA Reference
Thompson, L. (2016). Blame: It Must Be Assigned. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 30, 2020, from


Last updated: 27 Apr 2016
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