Emotional Romeos – Masters of Seduction
I’ve written about “Emotional Romeos” before. These disturbed characters are truly masters of seduction. (Seduction is one of the main manipulation tactics I describe in In Sheep’s Clothing.) And they can can sweep you off your feet at first. But involvement with them almost always ends in pain and heartache.
Like all disturbed characters, Emotional Romeos harbor a strictly self-serving agenda. But how they operate makes it quite difficult to correctly discern this. These masters of seduction want your heart, that’s for sure. They might even genuinely value your heart. That’s why they work so hard to win it, and, hopefully, possess it. But valuing what they see and desire in you doesn’t mean they genuinely value you. And it also doesn’t mean that they have the capacity to properly regard or care for your heart.
The masters of seduction I call Emotional Romeos are a particular variety of narcissist. (See also: The Emotional Romeo is a Thief of Hearts.) Contrary to some of the information promoted on the internet and popular books, not all narcissism is the same. Narcissism is actually a spectrum phenomenon. Moreover, it exists along spectra of both type and degree. (I wrote Character Disturbance to inform folks about the vast spectrum of all character disturbances.)
Now, it should be said that disturbed characters of all types and degrees include seduction in their manipulation toolbox. But Emotional Romeos hold this tactic in special regard. They know that many folks lack self-esteem, and crave validation of one type or another. So, an affirming glance, flattery, affirmation, etc., all provide a fairly sure pathway to the heart.
Telltale Signs of Narcissism
Every type of narcissism has a distinctive “signature” or two. But you have to know what the signs are and how to recognize them. Some behaviors signal more benign forms of narcissism. Others, however, point to a more malignant type.
Many Emotional Romeos are narcissists of the amorous type. These more “vulnerable” narcissists build themselves up by securing the adulation of others. They know how to play the role of “hero” in your life. But they lack the self-sacrificing characteristics of a genuine hero. Some Emotional Romeos are of the more malignant, predatory type. These massters of seduction endear themselves to you strickly to take advantage and exploit. And they have one characteristic they can’t hide, but that you might still miss if you’re not fully aware. That characteristic is smugness, the self-satisfied feeling a malignant narcissist gets in taking advantage of you. The worst kind of Emotional Romeo will do anything to win you over. But having won the contest, as they see it, you have little additional value to them. So, you’ll soon find yourself ignored, taken for granted, used, and, often, abused.
Narcissists and Love
Their very nature prevents narcissists from truly loving. These characters know all too well love’s many masquerades. And they understand that it today’s world, it’s not uncommon to lack awareness about genuine love. Most narcissists can’t even love themselves properly, so they solicit and settle for substitutes. And a few, while knowing well what the real deal is, harbor an ouright loathing of it.