Being in a relationship with a narcissist is a world of woes in itself. Things get even worse when they get a back-up, AKA, Flying Monkeys. Flying Monkeys are the evil sidekicks of the narcissist who continue to torment you even when you have broken all contact from the culprit.
In a just and fair world, these selfish and completely self-centered people would be called out for their controlling behavior. But that is rarely the case. Most of the time, their victims find themselves alone and stranded because they have managed to turn everyone else against them too. You see, their victims aren’t the only people that narcissists are capable of manipulating and brainwashing. There is a whole bunch of people which these narcissists like to keep under their command.
Flying Monkeys are also known by the following terms:
- An extension of the narcissist
Who has the potential to become Flying Monkeys?
It can be particularly heartbreaking if these Flying Monkeys are your mutual friends or your close friends and even members of your family. It is very easy for a narcissist to manipulate and mold these people against you. After all, isn’t manipulating the one craft that they are great at? So rest assured, your good, sensible, logical friends can very easily turn into sycophants, willing to do whatever it is that the narcissist wants them to.
There is another important reason why some people turn into Flying Monkeys for the narcissist, and that is they might have any underlying condition which the narcissist exploits to make them do their bidding. Here are a few examples of people who might end up being a narcissist’s Flying Monkeys.
1. People with Anxiety Disorder.
People who suffer from anxiety disorder tend to look for validation more often than not. Apprehensive and anxious thoughts are always swirling in their minds, and this is exactly what the narcissist exploits. The narcissist’s overconfidence and arrogance attract them and they wish them to be more like the narcissist.
Because of this, people with an anxiety disorder are drawn to narcissists like moths to a flame. Their anxiety becomes their greatest weakness and the narcissist’s greatest weapon.
2. People with Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
Narcissists will be drawn to other narcissists, because obviously. They have the same aspirations, mindset, and the same tricks up their sleeves. However, when one narcissist submits to the other and agrees to be their Flying Monkey, it is normally because they will get something useful in return, such as power, money, prestige, influence, etc. They might hope to take the place of the main narcissist.
Sociopaths tend to hide behind narcissists and don’t mind being in their shadow, but that does not mean they are any less diabolical. Sociopaths become Flying Monkeys for narcissists not because they revere the latter, but because their attacks and tricks will go unnoticed in the midst of the narcissist’s dirty games.
Narcissists think that they are ruling over the sociopath, and the sociopath lets them think that. In reality, it is the sociopath who is playing the narcissist by exploiting their weaknesses and vulnerabilities.
When a narcissist empowers an addict, they will do anything in their power to stay in the narcissist’s good books, because at the end of the day all the addict needs is a fix, and the narcissist will be happy to provide that. The narcissist knows very well what they need to do to make sure the addict does their bidding.
As long as the addict is showering an unhealthy amount of attention on the narcissist, the narcissist will keep on satisfying their needs. However, if the addict becomes too needy, the narcissist will discard them without even giving them a second thought.
5. Co-dependent people.
Co-dependent people and narcissists are toxic for each other, is an understatement, since they feed their mutual toxicity to each other in a very unhealthy and horrendous manner. Narcissists are dependent on them to feed their insecurities and vulnerabilities and the co-dependents are happy to do that. Co-dependents have no problem serving others and being subservient to them, in order to enjoy a sense of purpose and satisfaction.
How do narcissists use Flying Monkeys to torment their victims?
What the narcissist is not able to do, their Flying Monkeys will. No matter how low they might need to stoop, they would still do so, just to make their leader AKA, the narcissist happy. For example, if they come to know that you have recently started dating someone at work, they will find a way to turn up at your office and manipulate your partner into believing that they should not be with you.
The Flying Monkeys will make up horrible things about you and spread malicious gossip to destroy your reputation and credibility. They might say you are crazy or abusive, and that is why none of your relationships have worked out in the past. They might even contact your family, and say incorrect things about you. Narcissists and Flying Monkeys basically project their misdeeds on you and accuse you of doing the things that they themselves do to other people.
When narcissists and Flying Monkeys tell people that you are crazy, instantly know that it’s a smear campaign against you. And the more you react to it, and try to make people understand that everything that they are spewing is untrue, the more you are falling into the trap they have set.
Flying Monkeys will pretend to be concerned about you, and will justify their cheap tricks in the name of love and concern. They will create a web of lies in which you will be the problem, and they will be your well-wishers who will never give up on you. For example, you might have gotten drunk once at your best friend’s birthday party. Just once. However, Flying Monkeys will manipulate this incident, exaggerate it, and go around telling people that you have an alcohol problem.
If you confront them, they will gaslight you and manipulate you into thinking that you have hurt them tremendously by questioning their love and concern for you. And all they have ever wanted to do was look out for you and wish the best for you. They will be so convincing, that you might even end up believing them, and start feeling guilty about doubting them in the first place.
How can you protect yourself from Flying Monkeys?
You see, these minions of the narcissist, his Flying Monkeys so to speak can interfere and cause havoc in your life nonetheless. Even when you have cut ties with the narcissist for good, their Flying Monkeys will make sure that they make your life a living hell. But the good news is that, there are certain things you can do to make sure you are able to counter their dirty tricks.
1. Keep an eye on anything personal of yours, especially social media.
You could ban the narcissist from your life, block all mediums of contact, and establish an absolute no-contact policy. But all that won’t be enough if they have decided to keep bothering you and if they have an army of minions who want nothing more but to please them.
Even if they can’t reach out to you through social media or your phone, they’d still want to know everything that is happening in your life. And if you don’t give them that access, they will engage someone else to do their dirty work. In order to make sure that they do not get to have any kind of access to your personal information, you need to monitor your online activity closely.
Don’t accept requests from random strangers and even for mutual friends add only those whom you trust 100%. If you ever get any inclination that some of your information has been breached to the narcissist, review your privacy measures across all social media. Try to be more private about your life, lest you feel like being hounded online.
2. Try to maintain your integrity no matter how hard they push you.
Another way the narcissist and their Flying Monkeys can ruin your life is by spreading malicious gossip about you. They’d use any and every opportunity to malign your name. They’d foul mouth you to friends, family, and colleagues. This can get emotionally and mentally exhausting if you have to keep dodging false accusations that attack your integrity and character.
As hard as it is to keep ignoring false accusations, it is even worse when you get to hear something (which you told someone in complete confidence) being repeated to you by a mere acquaintance. You see narcissists don’t respect you or your privacy. So any intimate information which you might have shared with them in the past can become public knowledge, the moment they feel like doing so.
There can be many reasons behind such behavior on their part. First and foremost is that they want to get under your skin. And exposing you like this might be the surest way for them to incite a reaction out of you. Another reason could be that they are feeling vindictive and this might seem like just revenge for them.
No matter their reason, you will have to maintain your cool and your integrity. Again, in a just world, you wouldn’t have to bear with all this slandering, but when it comes to a narcissist and Flying Monkeys, you cannot expect decency, fairness, and class from them. But what you can do is maintain your dignity and not give the reaction they are looking for. Reacting to them in any way will only make the situation worse. They would be painting a picture of you as someone who is mean, mentally disturbed, and whatnot.
They will try to make you look like the crazy one, and that is exactly what you need to avoid.
3. Make them see the truth by educating them.
In the case that the Flying Monkeys are people very close to you, part of your family, for instance, ignoring them might get a bit more problematic. They’d make other family members believe that you are the problem, and you are the one who is rude, manipulative, and indecent.
As can be expected, they’d be great at painting themselves as the good ones whereas you’d be the insensitive person who is not respecting their well-meaning actions. And the worst thing is that these people would be fooled by them. And so, instead of even trying to learn your side of the story, they’d start admonishing you on your alleged bad behavior. This could quickly turn into an intervention that would have you facing off your abuser and his/her Flying Monkeys.
If you are faced with a situation like this, DO NOT lash out. Do not lose your temper and say harsh things back to them, because that is exactly what they are expecting you to do. Rather, try to educate them. Try to make them understand that they are being manipulated by the narcissist, and are being made to do things that the narcissist wants them to do, and they are not being able to see that. Keep your calm, and be rational. Give them facts and prove it to them that you are not the problem, the narcissist is.
Narcissists and Flying Monkeys will always try to discredit you and your character, just to fulfill their own twisted narrative. The moment you realize what they are doing, keep these things in mind and fight them with integrity, facts, and class. Because these are the three things that they do not possess in any way and are deathly scared of.