Review of The Narcissistic Tangle

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Pablo Josue Mendia
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Review of The Narcissistic Tangle

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[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The Narcissistic Tangle" by Leila Rivers.]
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5 out of 5 stars
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The Narcissistic Tangle: Unraveling Generational Abuse, Reclaiming Lives, and Nurturing Resilience by Leila Rivers is an insightful exploration into the insidious world of narcissistic abuse, particularly as it spans generations. Rivers' book is an educational and empowering guide for those grappling with the complex dynamics of narcissistic relationships, aiming to shed light on the pervasive impact these relationships have on individuals and families.

Rivers begins with a poignant introduction, sharing the story of Ruth, a woman who realizes the profound influence her narcissistic mother had on her life only after becoming a mother herself. This narrative sets the stage for Rivers' broader examination of narcissistic abuse, providing a relatable entry point for readers. The author seamlessly weaves her personal experiences with scholarly research, offering a comprehensive look at the manifestations and repercussions of narcissistic personality disorder (NPD).

The book has detailed chapters, each addressing different aspects of narcissistic abuse. In the initial chapters, Rivers explains the characteristics of NPD, differentiating between narcissistic traits and the disorder itself. She delves into the various types of narcissism, including overt, covert, communal, antagonistic, and malignant narcissism, providing a nuanced understanding that challenges common misconceptions.

In addition, the book examines the family dynamics within narcissistic households. Rivers discusses the roles that different family members often play. Some roles include the golden child, the scapegoat, the mascot, and the caretaker. This framework helps readers recognize and understand their own experiences within the context of these dysfunctional relationships. Rivers does not shy away from the painful reality of these roles, illustrating how they perpetuate a cycle of abuse and trauma.

Rivers also addresses the long-term effects of narcissistic abuse on survivors, including issues like complex post-traumatic stress disorder (CPTSD), anxiety, depression, and difficulties with self-worth and identity. She emphasizes that survivors are not merely victims but individuals who can reclaim their lives and identities. This perspective is empowering and hopeful, encouraging readers to seek healing and growth.

In the latter parts of the book, Rivers provides practical advice for breaking free from the grip of a narcissist. She outlines strategies for setting boundaries, managing a narcissist's retaliation, and ultimately, reclaiming one's life. Rivers’ approach is compassionate and realistic, acknowledging the difficulties while offering tangible steps toward recovery.

Moreover, the book contains minimal errors and is well-edited. I have no criticism. I rate it 5 out of 5 stars.

Overall, The Narcissistic Tangle stands out as a crucial resource for anyone affected by narcissistic abuse. Rivers' blend of personal narrative, detailed analysis, and practical advice makes it an invaluable guide. The book educates readers about the nature of narcissistic abuse and also empowers them to take control of their lives, fostering resilience and hope in the face of adversity.

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Nwachukwu Somto
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Post by Nwachukwu Somto »

Your mention of the roles within narcissistic families—golden child, scapegoat, mascot, and caretaker—adds an important layer of context for those looking to identify and make sense of their own experiences.
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Chi Chiu Michael Mak
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Post by Chi Chiu Michael Mak »

From the looks of it, narcissism is a go-to for dysfunctional families. Those roles appear funny and dramatic in soap operas, but they don't seem funny anymore when you realize they actually happen in real life.
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