I hate a few chapters of Debi's book. The Kingly Man Chapter is one of them. It's so incredibly toxic. The whole chapter is essentially an apologia for narcissistic men and an instruction manual for how to be an enabler instead of a wife.
To counter-balance some of the toxicity, I read the book "The Wizard of Oz and Other Narcissists" by Eleanor Payson. This book helped me clarify some of the traits in Michael Pearl that are unhealthy and also recognize Debi as a covert narcissist as well. I'll be referring back to the book throughout the King Chapter, but also later in the book since I think we can determine some interesting dynamics in the Pearl family involving which children are the "chosen" kids and which are disposable.
Here's a list of questions to help determine if a person has a narcissistic personality disorder from the book:
1. Do you frequently feel as if you exist to listen to or to admire his or her special talents and sensitivities?
2. Do you frequently feel hurt or annoyed that you do not get your turn and, if you do, the interest and quality of attention are significantly less than the kind of attention you give?
3. Do you sense an intense degree of pride in this person or feel reluctant to offer your opinions when you know they will differ from his or hers?
4.Do you often feel that the quality of your whole interaction will depend on what kind of mood he or she is in?
5. Do you feel controlled by this person?
6. Are you afraid of upsetting him or her for fear of being cut off or retaliated against?
7. Do you have difficulty saying no?
8. Are you exhausted from this kind of energy drain or worry that this relationship causes you?
9. Have you begun to feel lonely in this relationship?
10. Do you often wonder where you stand in this relationship?
11. Are you in constant doubt about what's real?
12. Are you reluctant to let go of this relationship due to a strong sense of protectiveness?
13. Are you staying in the relationship because of your investment of time and energy?
14. Do you stay because you say to yourself the devil you know is better than the devil you don't know?
If this sounds like a relationship you are currently in, it is well worth seeking professional counseling for your own sanity.
Another interesting item is the DSM IV series on narcissistic personality disorder:
"A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following:
1. has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)
2. is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love.
3. believes that he or she is 'special' and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high status people (or institutions).
4. requires excessive admiration.
5. has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations.
6. is inter-personally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends.
7. lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings or needs of others.
8. is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her.
9. shows arrogance, haughty behaviors or attitudes.