Don't Get It Twisted: Being A Narcissist 101 | Crooked Media
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September 02, 2022
Don't Get It Twisted: Being A Narcissist 101

In This Episode

There is a lot of talk about narcissism these days, and yet there are persistently misconceptions about what it is, what it looks like, what causes it, and how it affects others. The ladies of Imani State of Mind are setting the record straight on what it really looks like to be a Narcissist.

We would love to hear from you! Please email us at with all your questions and comments!



Dr. Imani Walker: Hey, everybody, welcome to Imani State of Mind. I’m Dr. Imani. 


MegScoop Thomas: And I am Meg. 


Dr. Imani Walker: And we are now in the first week of September which is really wild. I know I said that last time, like, oh, it’s like the end. It’s like almost the end of August. It’s almost September. Like, oh, it’s so wild. But like, where has 2022 gone? 


MegScoop Thomas: Uh I mean, I feel like you get the the older you get, the faster time goes. 


Dr. Imani Walker: I know. 


MegScoop Thomas: Which is so unfair. But it really is. 


Dr. Imani Walker: It really is. 


MegScoop Thomas: I’m just trying to enjoy Labor Day weekend. I’m going to Jamaica as soon as I get off of this girl. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Ohh! 


MegScoop Thomas: I’m out.


Dr. Imani Walker: Oh, yeah. Okay. Nice, nice. That’s super exciting. Where in Jamaica are you going? 


MegScoop Thomas: Montego Bay. 


Dr. Imani Walker: That’s nice. Montego Bay is always really nice. Um.


MegScoop Thomas: Now, here’s the thing, though. Here’s what I’m mad about, because I just looked at the weather. You know, this is like hurricane season. But– 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 


MegScoop Thomas: –I’m going on a girls trip because we always do something every Labor Day. And I went and looked and it is like the one time this year that the tropical storms are hitting hard. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, it’s just. 


MegScoop Thomas: I was like, it has to be this weekend? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. This is the time. This is the time. I remember when I went to Jamaica as a kid, I was ten and it was my first trip to Jamaica and it was great. Like we were in Montego Bay as well and we were like um it was like maybe 8 to 10 of us, because whenever we have a family trip like that, we always roll deep. And um I [laughing] remember like it was nighttime, and we were like at a resort or we were at a restaurant and all of a sudden, like, legit, like all of a sudden. So. So here’s a scene. We’re sitting not on the beach, but like, basically the beach is right there. Like there’s sand, you know, touching, like your shoes. And all of a sudden, like, we’re in the middle of dinner and it just gets super windy and it gets so windy that all these, like the plates start flying off the table. [laughter] And so I’m like under the table, like we scatter. The people who work there are just like, okay, yeah, whatever. [laughing] And I’m just like, I was ten. I was like, Yo, like, what is happening? They were like, Oh yeah, it was just like a tropical depression. It’s fine. And I was like, All right then. Okay, Jamaica. I see y’all. I mean, as, as a Jamaican, I was like, you know what? Like, that’s, that’s right. That’s what’s up. Like, we don’t even we don’t even get, like, perturbed about no flying plates and potentially, you know, having like shards like lacerate our skin and muscles and like, whatever, like we out here. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: So. 


MegScoop Thomas: As you crawl from under the table. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Okay? Like for real. But um I’m actually my mom was talking about like having a family trip for Christmas, so um. Uh, I’m kind of I don’t know. I’m weighing it. I definitely want to go. I definitely want to go. But also to fly from where you are in Atlanta to Jamaica is not a big deal. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: To fly from L.A. to Jamaica. Sometimes it’s like it’s it’s not always direct. So that’s why I’m a little bit like, I don’t know, I feel like, I don’t I don’t like I don’t like stopping when I’m flying. 


MegScoop Thomas: Me either. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Um. But in any case, have a great time. I know you’re going to, like, just be out in the sun killing it all, like, moist, not not even moist, moyce. M-o-y-c-e. All moyce. 


MegScoop Thomas: Ooo yes. 


Dr. Imani Walker: And oiled up. 


MegScoop Thomas: I’m hoping. Send some prayers for some sunshine, please. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mama need a break. Okay? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, yeah. I mean, even if even if it’s, you know, a little cloudy, you can still, like, you know, like you could still, like, enjoy yourself and, like, go have like, I’m thinking about food. Go have, like, jerk, you know, go to like a. 


MegScoop Thomas: Hell yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Like a jerk. 


MegScoop Thomas: I’m about to do it. I’m about to do all of that and look, as long as there’s no, like, actual hurricane. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: I’m being at beach in that water. Okay? I don’t care if it’s raining. I would be out there, right? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Oh, yeah, for sure. It’s like bath water, it’s beautiful. 


MegScoop Thomas: There you go. See. 


Dr. Imani Walker: It’s beautiful. I mean, which is nice. I mean, it’s nice that you’ll be able to take a break. I, of course, will be here. There’s supposed to be a heat wave um in California, like all of California this weekend. Um, me and my boyfriend were talking about maybe, like, going to the bay, like going up north and like, oh, maybe it’ll be cooler. They were like, nope. Heat advisories, so uh. 


MegScoop Thomas: What? 


Dr. Imani Walker: No fun– 


MegScoop Thomas: In the Bay? 


Dr. Imani Walker: –this weekend. Yeah, in the bay. Yeah. 


MegScoop Thomas: Wow. 


Dr. Imani Walker: It’s been getting warmer up there actually, so, you know, we’ll see. 


MegScoop Thomas: Global warming. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. But I mean, I’m happy that you’ll be able to take a little break. I’m taking a little break. I’m kind of off, um of course. What never goes off or never takes a day off? The news. The news out here, these people are just being petty and crazy. You know, what’s been killing me? Like I haven’t really been paying attention to it, but I paid attention to it recently. I read this article that there are for real people who are mad that people are getting like um breaks with their college loans. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. Like– 


Dr. Imani Walker: I’m like. 


MegScoop Thomas: I don’t have college loans, but I’m going to tell you right now, I am so happy for all the people who get to have– 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah! 


MegScoop Thomas: A break in that [?], because, first of all, college loans are very predatory, just in by– 


Dr. Imani Walker:


MegScoop Thomas: –nature, like the whole system. So. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: Kudos to all y’all that don’t have to pay that extra $10,000 back. Okay. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Mhm. Exactly. So I was like, who are these people? Like hating on others who get to have, I mean and legit. If we being for real like I don’t have loans I’d like to shout out my parents my parents who are like, okay, if you go to a Black school where the tuition is low, we’ll pay for your med school, which they did. 


MegScoop Thomas: Ooo yes.


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. But if you have like if you have anything graduate and postgraduate, your your loan situation is like in the hundreds of thousands. And I’m like, y’all, it’s only $10,000. Which for some people makes a huge difference because I’ve seen so many stories of people who are like, yeah, I have $35,000. I took out $35,000. Ten years later, I now owe $38,000. 


MegScoop Thomas: Does that make sense? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. It’s like it’s like going to a check cashing place or like you said, like predatory loans as well. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: So, you know, I did see this meme where um basically it was like all the people were [laughing] sorry I’m just laughing about it. It was like all the, it was like it was like, you know, like a meme, but it was like a picture but it was like cut split into four like squares. And it was like, these are all the people who are hating on people who got their loans forgiven. And it was like, you know, the, the, the white chick who got the I want to speak to the manager haircut. It was like somebody with like no lips, like thin ass lips. Um somebody in the military and then like just like some regular degular lookin white check. Like she looked like a total Ashley. And I was like, Oh my god. I was like that is so rude. But that’s really what I’ve been gathering. Like, the people who are mad are the same people who like, you know, wanted to like build the wall. So whatever too bad.


MegScoop Thomas: Right, and the same people, some of the same people who got PPP loans forgiven like millions. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Listen. 


MegScoop Thomas: What? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: You mad about $10,000 dollars?


Dr. Imani Walker: Right? I’m like, anyway, anyway, I’m like, y’all some haters. I, I really detest things like that. Like somebody else just got not even lucky, but like people have been like, like campaigning for this, like, like trying to bring it into the spotlight for years and like, yeah, $10,000 ain’t a whole lot because they’re like, you need to forgive all these loans, but I’m just like, y’all are so petty. But anyway. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah. And speaking of haters, what I’ve been looking at in the news is, you know, comedian Aries Spears was in an interview talking about Lizzo, and– 


Dr. Imani Walker: –I saw something like that. 


MegScoop Thomas: Basically he said, like, she needs to stop showing off her body because she looks like the poop emoji. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Okay. 


MegScoop Thomas: He called her. He said her body was like, she like built like mashed potatoes, like all this stuff. Basically just hating on her. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Have you seen Aries Spears? 


MegScoop Thomas: Yes. Girl. 


Dr. Imani Walker: I’m like you– 


MegScoop Thomas: He look like the same things. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. I’m look like you and. I’m like you look like an entire bag of money. And that’s not a compliment. You just look misshapen and just like, whatever. Like, what are you talking about? 


MegScoop Thomas: And he and I was just like– 


Dr. Imani Walker: It’s so stupid.


MegScoop Thomas: –he is really talking and I’m looking at him and he said, well, basically he’s like, I know I’m not the most fit guy, but like if you got, you know, if you’re charming, you’re funny, you have competence and you’re like halfway decent looking, then like you can get some chicks. And I’m looking at him. I was like, Well, you ain’t none of that. So why are you– 


Dr. Imani Walker: I mean, I mean. [laughter] 


MegScoop Thomas: Like why are you highlighting that? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right I’m like. 


MegScoop Thomas: You aren’t any of those things. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. I’m like, Lizzo’s cute. 


MegScoop Thomas: It was just tasteful, like, yeah, that’s what I’m saying. And he said, she has a cute face, but like, she needs to stop showing her body. And that to me is just distasteful because first of all, who are you to be telling some this woman she needs to cover up? That’s number one. And number two, there is a somebody for everybody. Okay? She got a man and her man like the way she look. Okay. He love the way she look. So don’t be sitting here to say that nobody likes that, okay? Nobody likes you. Don’t do that.


Dr. Imani Walker: First of all, first of all, when’s the last time you heard Aries Spears name. When Mad TV was on. Okay. How how many decades ago was that? 


MegScoop Thomas: That’s exactly what Mike Epps said too. [pause] That’s what Mike Epps said. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Okay. I mean. 


MegScoop Thomas: He was like, who is, what? Where has he been? Come on. Goodbye.


Dr. Imani Walker: Who? Who? Who? Aries Spears. The last time I saw you legit my G was like in maybe ’98. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Maybe. I’m like. 


MegScoop Thomas: [?] is this Britney cousin? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Get out of here. 


MegScoop Thomas: Who is this? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Let me tell you something. Misogyny and misogynoire, which is a unique form of misogyny, which which obviously targets like Black women. Let me tell you something. Have you ever heard this saying that? [laugh] Have you ever heard the saying that Black men are the white people of of Black people? 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: And this is an example. It’s like. Of all the things you could have, like, spoken about today. Of all the things that you could have, like, just, you know, brought to the attention of the general public. Like, that’s what you chose? Like, you sound really like, you sound like you need a hug. 


MegScoop Thomas: All while sweating because he is so out of shape like bro you just talking. Why are you sweating so profusely? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. Right. What’s these beads of sweat on your face. You need to sit down. As a matter of fact, you don’t need to sit down, okay? 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: You need to go walk somewhere. Here’s the thing. I would. I definitely can blame society and patriarchy for his. For his views. I definitely can blame the misogynynoire that is often times highlighted and unfortunately brought to our attention by, like, legit. You want to know why? Okay. Do you want to know why? I started, like, shaving my head myself? 


MegScoop Thomas: Why? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Because I hated going to the barbershop. 


MegScoop Thomas: Oh, like the male barbershop? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, I was just like, you all sound stupid. And it would always be like, nobody would say anything about me. And that wasn’t the point. But it was always like, Oh, but you know what? These raggedy assholes out here. But you know what, Imani? You different. I’m like, you know what I’m not talk–like you? Like, first of all, first of all, like, yes, you are a barber. But on the low, we all know that you sell weed out the back. So get out of my face. [laughter] Like I was. I was just like, y’all ain’t shit either. Y’all ain’t shit. [sigh] So. So I started shaved my head because I was like, I’m tired of y’all. I’m tired of all this waitin. I’m tired of, like, having to deal with, like. Like. No, I don’t want. Like, not that they was crackheads. But people will come in and be like, okay, well, I’m selling these CDs and tapes. I’m like, I don’t want no CDs and tapes. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: I just want to get my hair cut and leave. 


MegScoop Thomas: I’m tired of saying no. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. I’m tired of saying no. So, Aries Spears, you need to. [sigh] I don’t know.


MegScoop Thomas: Narcissism at its finest. 


Dr. Imani Walker: At its finest, patriarchy at its finest. Just like and you know what, whiteness at its finest. 


MegScoop Thomas: Hmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. Left over from the last show. So in any case, whatever. I mean, Aries Spears needs to calm down and not get it twisted. And you know what else we’re going to be discussing for this September? It’s don’t get it twisted September. That’s our new series. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mm hm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: And we’re going to be breaking down many of the myths of some very well known disorders um like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder. On today’s show, we’re going to be breaking down narcissism. So. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: So. 


MegScoop Thomas: Narcissism. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yes, yes. I’ve spoken about it so many times. I have known way too many narcissists in my life as I’m sure a lot of our listeners have as well. So that being said, if you’re loving the show, if you’re loving Imani State of Mind, let us know by rating the show on your favorite podcast app. But we have so much to talk about today, so let’s go ahead and start the show. [music break] All right. Now it is time for Ask Dr. Imani anything. So we love hearing from you guys. This is where you guys get to write in uh letters and then me and Meg will give you the best advice that we possibly can. So, Meg, who is our first letter from today? 


MegScoop Thomas: Yes, our first letter is from Dani, and she writes, Dr. Imani and Meg, don’t judge me when I say this, but I am addicted to cheating. I have been in a relationship for the past 14 years, 10 out of the 14 years I haven’t been faithful to my man. And don’t get me wrong, my man is a good man and does everything he’s supposed to physically and mentally. But there’s a certain thrill I get from cheating. I’m obsessed with the high I get from getting away with something I know is wrong. Lately, my man has been talking about us getting married, so the guilt of my cheating obsession is finally getting to me. My best friend thinks asking him to be in a polyamorous relationship will fix the desire to cheat. And I think it’ll only have me cheating on multiple partners instead of one. What do you think I should do? Could I have a deeper problem than just being addicted to the rush of cheating? Any advice you can offer to help me stop cheating would be greatly appreciated. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Oh, my God. Okay. All right, Dani listen. Um let me tell you something. [sigh] Whether you’re in a “monogamous” and I’m using this in quotations or polyamorous relationship, like you just trife, okay. [laughter] And I’m and I’m just saying this listen. I’m saying this as somebody who for quite a long spell of my adulthood was trife as well. I’m not going to say that I was, like, addicted to cheating. I just how do I put this? I didn’t have a really good example of a father figure, and my dad cheated on my mom. And as much as I would say to myself, like, oh, my God, I would never do that. I would never do that. It’s it’s I mean, like you said, you like the thrill. You like the thrill of like deceiving people. You like the thrill of basically having to cover up your tracks. And if that’s the case, honestly, I suggest that you, I don’t know, like go play a board game. Like go play clue or something. Like go like play a video game where you got to bob and weave and dodge. Like, you know, I’m saying like this is unfortunately, it’s just trifling behavior. And I’m only saying that well I’m saying that because it is. But but I’m saying that also because even if you’re in a polyamorous relationship, polyamorous relationships have rules. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: So. 


MegScoop Thomas: That’s the part that she doesn’t like is the rules. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. And if you don’t like the rules, then you need to not be in a relationship and you just need to go and be in these streets and live your life. But I understand. Here’s what I’ll say. I do understand the fact that you do like having someone to go home to. The issue is that if you want that in your life, then you’re going to have to learn how to respect and honor relationships and respect and honor the person you are with, and respect and honor the love that the person is giving to you. And if you can’t do that, then you can’t be in a relationship. Whether it’s one person or two people or five people. There are people who are in polyamorous relationships and it’s not about just going out and like, you know, acting a god damn fool. It’s about we’re together. But I’m going to notify you if I like somebody, we’re going to discuss it. Like being in a polyamorous relationship often times takes even more trust and communication and discussion than a monogamous relationship. 


MegScoop Thomas: There’s no thrill in that. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 


MegScoop Thomas: Because there’s a couple people that you now have to check in to and be honest with. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Exactly. 


MegScoop Thomas: You know she’s right, when she’s like, ahh, I probably just, cheat on all of them too. Yes, you will. 


Dr. Imani Walker: You will. 


MegScoop Thomas: You are going to cheat on all of them, Dani. No, don’t do polyamory. It ain’t for you. 


Dr. Imani Walker: It’s not. 


MegScoop Thomas: Cause what you need to do is honesty. And I and this is what I thi– this is what I truly believe. Dani, you need to go ahead and tell your man. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Mmm hmm. 


MegScoop Thomas: That this is what you’ve been doing. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: I have a strong feeling. 


Dr. Imani Walker: That he doing the same thing girl. 


MegScoop Thomas: Either that or he knew. Because. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: For you to have done this 10 out of the 14 years. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: That y’all have been together, I’m pretty sure you ain’t been. You’ve been sloppy at least once. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Listen. 


MegScoop Thomas: During that 14 years. He knows some– he knows something. So I feel like when you tell him there’s a high possibility he’ll just be like. 


Dr. Imani Walker: He gonna be like I already know.


MegScoop Thomas: I already know, and I’m okay with it, actually. 


Dr. Imani Walker: He probably, he probably push send on this letter. I’m just kidding. [laughing]


MegScoop Thomas: But he. But the issue is what’s going to happen is Dani’s no longer going to find the thrill of cheating because now he knows. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. Exactly. And so– 


MegScoop Thomas: The thrill is gone. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. It’s not fun to be like, okay, I’m a go. I’m a go fuck with um Earl. He’s going to be like, I know. [banter] 


MegScoop Thomas: And then she, so what I think you need to be honest. 


Dr. Imani Walker: And she’s gonna be like, forget it. [laughter] Forget it then. I’m gonna just stay home with you. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right, right. 


MegScoop Thomas: So you should try that, Dani. Try being honest with him, because I think you might be pleasantly surprised and it may take the thrill away. So now you’re like, well what’s the point of cheating anyway? He knows, No, I don’t want to do this thing. But that could be one option. The other option is that he leaves your ass, and that is actually what I hope he does, because that is trifling for you to be doing this behind this man’s back for 14– 


Dr. Imani Walker: For 14 years. 


MegScoop Thomas: Years. And she said he’s a good man. If he’s a bad dude, um maybe I could understand. But you said he was a good dude. So like for you to–


Dr. Imani Walker: If he’s a bad dude, then don’t be with him. 


MegScoop Thomas: That’s what I’m saying. Like it just so you’ve done this to a very good person, as you’ve described him to be. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. You should feel terrible. 


MegScoop Thomas: I hope he says I’m done. I don’t want to do. And then what happens is once he’s gone, you will then realize the ramifications of your actions. And that may prompt you to stop being a cheater. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Exactly. Yeah. 


MegScoop Thomas: Hopefully. I don’t know. 


Dr. Imani Walker: And I’m yeah. And I’m just saying, as somebody who legit was like just on some ho-ish behavior [laughter] like, I mean, basically caused the breakup myself because I was just out in these streets and even though like I was like, oh, my heart is broken, what am I going to do? It was like, Imani, that’s your fault. Like you did it. Like you played yourself. And it was like, Okay, let me. I’m a get with somebody else, and then I’m gonna do the same thing and then like, Oh, God. Why? And it’s like, why? Cause you trife. Like, Imani, you trife. Wait. Stop.


MegScoop Thomas: What made you stop being like that then?  


Dr. Imani Walker: Um. I just honestly, I think I just got older and I just had. Okay first. First and foremost, it’s not necessarily age, but I. But I did get older and I think with age comes experience and they’re just like it. Like, I just was like, I don’t want to be trife no more like this is wack. Like if somebody did the same thing, like because I was if somebody does the same thing to me, I don’t even care. And then I met somebody where if I knew that if that person did the same thing to me, I’d be completely devastated. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mm okay,. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Like, I would just be like, how could you? And ahhh like. It would. It would just be terrible. And I just. You know, and I just. I didn’t want to put. I didn’t want to put him through that. But also what changed that is therapy. Dani, also, you need to go to therapy, girl. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mm hmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Like you got issues. Just like I have issues. Had issues. You need to, like, there’s. There’s so much going on that you’re not admitting or accepting. And this is why you’re doing that same behavior. I, I want to actually, like, put my money on like you were. You saw your parents do this or you something, but like something very close to you. Basically, you saw somebody as a young age, like just acting an entire fool. And that’s why you do the same thing. So um, yeah.


MegScoop Thomas: And this, this is like some a case of narcissism, too, as well. Right? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. I mean. Well, yeah. Yeah. I mean, definitely. 


MegScoop Thomas: [?] narcissism. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. There are some traits, you know, it’s it’s like, I mean, essentially that. Well, we’ll get into it a little bit later because we are talking discussing narcissism today. But I get the sense, Dani, that you don’t have a lot of empathy for your partner, doesn’t mean that you are a narcissist, but there’s clearly not. Um, I mean, you do. You do. It’s that you did say that you have some guilt about your cheating obsession, especially since your man’s been talking about y’all getting married. But, like, do not please. Seriously, do not pass go. Do not get married. Like. 


MegScoop Thomas: No. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Just get out of this relationship and, you know, or at the very least, tell him and then go to, go to couples therapy. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: But there needs to be a therapist up in your life, so. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mm hmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Thank you, Dani. Um. I’m sorry I called you trife but your behavior trife. And I understand. So. I’m so, so, so. Moving on. 


MegScoop Thomas: Our next letter comes from a listener by the name of Bibi. Hola. I am seeking help with how to live with my narcissistic husband. I love him and divorce is not the first option I want to choose to solve this problem. It’s like the same competence, assertiveness and big personality I loved while we were dating, are the very problems in my marriage now. Nothing he does is ever wrong because he thinks he is perfect. So that means everything is my fault. One time he lost his wallet and said it was my fault for distracting him at that moment, prompting him to leave it somewhere. If he gives me a compliment, it’s always in the form of a compliment for himself. It’s really draining to be fighting with him all the time. He is constantly talking down to me. I feel like I have to shrink in order for him to thrive. He is so consumed with what he has going on that he never makes time for my feelings. He truly believes he is smarter than everyone and has a superior attitude. So people have started to stop inviting us places. I love my husband, but I also love my sanity. Is it possible to get that happily ever after marriage with a narcissist? 


Dr. Imani Walker: No. 


MegScoop Thomas: Oooh. 


Dr. Imani Walker: No. 


MegScoop Thomas: That’s tough. 


Dr. Imani Walker: It’s not. Like. It’s not like simply. Okay. Hold on. Who wrote this letter? Bibi. Okay. Bibi. Listen, this Imani. Okay. I’m just telling you straight up. Is it possible to be married to a narcissist and be happy? No, it’s not. Because the thing about, first of all, let’s not even talk about marriage. A relationship is about compromise. Okay? It’s about respect, mutual respect. It’s about basically putting the person that you’re with, if not like at the level that you view yourself or even sometimes a little bit higher just because you care so much for that person and you want the best for that person. And then because you’re able to be so free, like you’re able to basically express your love so freely, that means that the both of you all can kind of like float off on your own special cloud of love and, like, live a great life together. You can’t do that with somebody who’s only concerned with themselves. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: That that’s pretty much it. I actually it’s interesting that um Bibi wrote this. You wrote your letter like this because I actually um saw my cousin who lives out of town. She was visiting last week and my cousin. Let me see how I keep this kind of vague. My cousin told me that her and her husband, they don’t live in the same city, which. Okay, fine. Like that happens. They’ve been together, though, for mad long. They’ve been together for like, let me see how old am I? So, like, probably almost 30 years. They’ve been together for a long ass time. Right. And so my cousin was like, yeah, he, you know, he doesn’t live in the States. He lives overseas now, like, like in the Caribbean. And I was like, But how does that work? And she was like, it works great because he’s a narcissist. And I told him that I didn’t really want to be around him like that. So he, she’s like, I go see him every couple of months and then it’s cool. She’s like, well, we’re not going to split up. And I was like, But I was like, I don’t understand how this relationship works, like. Not that–


MegScoop Thomas: But is she truly happy, though? Because she might actually be okay with that. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Let me tell you something about my cousin. My cousin’s been complaining about her husband since they got married. Okay. So I was just like. Like it like, you know, like she’ll, you know, she’ll say safe and she’ll complain about her husband. And I’m like, okay, girl like, whatever. You’ve been complaining about him legit since before my son was born and my son is 15. So probably like for the past, like basically since they like got together that she been complaining. So I just kind of ignore her. But when she said this to me, I was like, okay, this really isn’t my business, but this sounds really stupid. Like you don’t like him. You know what I’m saying? Like you don’t like him like like it’s one thing to be like, oh, yeah, my husband, you know, he be getting on my nerves, girl. But I mean, everyone’s going to get on somebody’s nerves. But this is, like, legit. I need for you to get away from me. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Like, we have to be a country. Like a country away from each other just to deal. And I’m like, that’s not a relationship. That’s I don’t know what it is, but it doesn’t make sense to me. 


MegScoop Thomas: It’s not joy. It’s not joy. It’s not peace. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Exactly. And so I was just like, girl, okay, so, Bibi, let me just let me just say a couple of things that kind of like stick out in my mind as I read your letter. Okay. So you said that his confidence, assertiveness and big personality is are things that you loved while we were dating. But they’re the problems in my marriage now. Now, as somebody who has been with narcissists, I have narcissists in my family. Um, you do like their confidence. I’m a confident person. And sometimes when we are, I’m not even going to say blinded by like, oh, he’s so cute. He’s so. He different. Um sometimes. You know, it’s very easy to mistake that confidence as true confidence and not the delusions of grandeur of someone who has really low self-esteem and they’re trying to, like, make up for it. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right, right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: So I understand that. Um, the other thing you said is that everything is your fault, of course, because narcissists don’t ever believe they do anything wrong. Um, and then there’s something that really struck me, two things that struck me. You said you feel like you have to shrink in order for him to thrive. 


MegScoop Thomas: I was done right there. 


Dr. Imani Walker: No girl. 


MegScoop Thomas: When she said that I was like, oh, well, this is over. This letter’s over. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: Your answer’s there boo. You should never do that. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Ever, ever, ever. When you are with somebody that you happy with, like they make you feel like, you know, bigger than yourself. Like they make you feel like a ray of sunshine. Like, that’s not joy. That’s not peace. That’s not happiness. And then, girl, you said you said I was like, girl, bye. Bibi wrote, people have started to stop inviting us places, girl. [laughter] I mean, I’m not going to tell you what to do. I’m just going to tell you what I did. I left. So I mean, I don’t know, Meg, what you got to say to Bibi. 


MegScoop Thomas: I’m a tell you what to do. Leave. That’s what I’d do. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. I mean. 


MegScoop Thomas: Girl. I mean yet. Because the truth is, not, until a narcissist can address and first of all, can it. 


Dr. Imani Walker: They can’t. 


MegScoop Thomas: [?] narcissist. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. They can’t. They can’t. 


MegScoop Thomas: So it’s kind of like you can’t really fix anything. And I know Bibi you said you didn’t. You know, divorce is not your first option. And thats. 


Dr. Imani Walker: I don’t know why. 


MegScoop Thomas: But it definitely is. Is up there as probably the most possible and logical option. Um because there’s you know, I just don’t see you being a healthy whole person, dealing with somebody that’s always blaming you, always telling you you’re wrong, always putting you down, you know, always trying to make you shrink. And Bibi, that is not what God has for you. I just want to put that out. I feel like you’re a ray of sunshine. You had good grammar in your letter, so I know you’re smart. [laughter] I just really feel like you got. Girl. Leave, girl. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Leave, girl, leave. Leave. Leave. Leave your man. Sorry, leave your man. Okay. So, Dani. Bibi, thank you so much for submitting your questions. And I really mean that because there are people out there who also are having the same issues. So for you all to sending these letters was really brave. So, you know, thank you again. I really hope we were able to help by basically telling you that she was trifling and you need to leave your man. Um. [laughter] But in any case, today’s question is the they really got me thinking about how we all use psychological terms to describe people, but we really don’t take the time to know what these terms really mean and what they consist of. And that’s kind of it’s a thorn in my side. Like, you know, people be like, oh, you know, this is why they’re schizophrenic or, um you know, like. 


MegScoop Thomas: I’m such a psycho. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, yeah. I’m like, no, that’s not how. That’s that that’s not what that means. But in any case, we’re going to take a quick break and then we’ll be right back to talk more about narcissism. 




Dr. Imani Walker: Okay. Welcome back. So we are into our series for September, which is Don’t Get It Twisted, and we’re going to be breaking down the myths of very well-known disorders. And this weeks, on this week’s show we’re going to be discussing specifically is Narcissism. Okay. So, Meg, let me ask you, when you think about narcissism or narcissist, what do you what are the first things that you think of. 


MegScoop Thomas: Somebody who is full of themselves that only thinks about themselves, selfish, um all about themselves? That’s all. That’s the only thing I can think about. 


Dr. Imani Walker: You’re like. 


MegScoop Thomas: All about themselves. They mad selfish. They talk about themselves. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yes. So basically, yes. I mean, and that’s I’ll put it to you like this. When it comes to like not getting it twisted, I think a lot of people don’t have a problem getting narcissism, you know, twisted with anything else. Um, the one thing that I will say about nar– there is a difference between like narcissists and people who are selfish. So. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: I will readily admit I’m an only child. So I do have selfish tendencies. I’m like, Oh, did you want some? Like that’s like that. Like, that’s me every day. I’m like, oh, you, oh you wanted some of this? Oh okay. My bad. Um.  


MegScoop Thomas: So wait, how do you tell them apart then because– 


Dr. Imani Walker: Well. 


MegScoop Thomas: That to me, like how do you know? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Well, because for example I can, I can completely like, you know, like house a whole like cake, let’s say, for example. But when someone’s like, Oh, I wanted some. I’m like, Oh my God, I’m so sorry. Like, I have empathy. 


MegScoop Thomas: Okay. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Like I can empathize with others. Narcissists have no empathy, like zero empathy. Like, they’re just like, well, that’s your fault. So I don’t know what you gonna do. And or I’ll don’t even know why you would try to ask me for mine, you got to get yours. Like it’s, it’s a very self-centered um in a lot of ways, uh grandiose, and also in all ways their superior sense of self is not rooted in any reality or fact. Like–


MegScoop Thomas: But where does, then where does that come from then? 


Dr. Imani Walker: So, you know, one of the more famous narcissists of our you know, of our contemporary times, that’s that’s kind of um redundant. But of of of today is our last president, Donald Trump. Um. Where it comes from–


MegScoop Thomas: So he’s like a rich, spoiled white man with privilege, like where does his narcis– because I’m telling you I ain’t dating no rich boy white man before. But I’ve dated– 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: –plenty of narcissists. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: That are Black men that have grown up poor. So, like, where does that come from? 


Dr. Imani Walker: So, like, with a lot. Well, not a lot, I would say with certain mental disorders and especially, you know, I would say maybe with with definitely with with uh personality disorders. So narcissistic personality disorder obviously is a personality disorder. It, a lot of it, it comes from trauma. So I read an article recently about Trump and um what it what it revealed because I don’t know anything really about this man aside from like how he behaved as, you know, as an adult. But when he was very young, like, you know, probably toddler, maybe like anywhere from like 2 to 5 years old, his mother was chronically ill. And so she was often times wasn’t around to basically dole out, you know, give him, um you know, emotional support, love, you know, nurturing. His father um is in a lot of ways very similar to Donald Trump. He you know, wasn’t wasn’t the, you know, nicest person, wasn’t somebody who was very nurturing. So he really didn’t have anyone to go to. When it came to, I need love, I need nurturing, I need support. He didn’t have that. So when it comes to someone who is, you know, a developing narcissist, a lot of their sense of self and sense of superiority comes from the fact that they had to hype themselves up. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Which makes sense, right? It makes sense. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah. That makes so much sense. 


Dr. Imani Walker: It makes sense. 


MegScoop Thomas: Because they had nobody to believe in them. They had nobody to say, you’re awesome or you got this. Ugh. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: That makes me feel sad for him. My goodness. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Girl. No. Let me tell you about. [laughter] No, listen. Okay, I’ll put it. Okay. Here, because here’s the thing, right? Yes. It is sad to think about a little boy who is denied emotional support and love and nurturing and just, you know, what your parent is supposed to give you. It changes when you become an adult and you’re just an asshole. Like.


MegScoop Thomas: But Imani, aren’t we all that little boy and little girl on the inside, we’re all still that person? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Sure. But at the same time, like I said, like I’m an only child. Like by definition, I don’t really think about other people except for me. Except here’s the thing. Part of little kids going to like preschool, kindergarten, elementary, high school, whatever. Especially when you’re younger. A lot of it is is so that you learn how to socialize with others. Like, I don’t know if you’ve ever seen, like, a little kid who, like, didn’t get a chance to go to preschool and then you stick them in kindergarten. They are feral, not feral but they’re like, get [?]. That’s mine! Like they’re they don’t know how to share. They don’t know how to, like, really be like a sociable person. Like they don’t really know how to be a part of society yet. And so that’s the difference. The difference is that there are various times in someone’s life, I mean, provided you don’t live completely off the grill and you’re like a feral child, like, you know, like, like clothed in burlap and, you know, but there were times I definitely know where Donald Trump was told, yo, you cannot do that. Or, you know, like you need to be able to like empathize with others or like you can’t just be pushing people or you can’t just be bullying people. And he’s like, I don’t care, whatever. I’m smarter than all y’all. And it’s like, but that’s not rooted in any fact. Yes, it is. What’s the fact? The fact is that I believe it. Like that’s basically a narcissist, like they–


MegScoop Thomas: But that’s what I’m saying, is that wrong? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Uh. Yeah. It’s wrong. 


MegScoop Thomas: To. What? Because. Because the way you explain it is basically it comes from trauma because nobody believed in you. So is it wrong for even a high schooler or a college student? You know, any any person to be like, I believe I am smarter than anybody in here. That’s what I believe. And so– 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yes. 


MegScoop Thomas: I’m gonna rock with that. Is it wrong to feel like that? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Well, yeah, it’s wrong because if it’s if it’s not true, I’ll give you I’ll give you an example. 


MegScoop Thomas: But isn’t that subjective, though. It’s subjective. Right? 


Dr. Imani Walker: But well, no, here’s an example. Perfect example. I thought about this this morning. I was seeing a patient yesterday. Um, and at this particular facility where the patient is at, it’s a facility for people that um committed, you know, like really bad crimes, um all in part due to their mental illness. Right. So this guy’s better, but he’s still, you know, delusional. He still has these, like, delusions of grandeur, which is a hallmark of narcissism. I asked him, I was like, Oh, how are your you know daily groups? Like, they have to go to groups about money management, um you know, like, like, like um, like taking a shower every day. Like it’s very basic and rudimentary because a lot of these a lot of the patients, they really do need to be told like basic things, like taught basic things. So I know that this particular patient went to college but didn’t finish. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mm hmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: So he says to me, he says, I said, you know, how do you, how are your groups, how are your daily groups? And he was like, well, they’re pretty boring. I mean, he was like, I don’t really feel like I need to be in them because I’m so much smarter than anybody than everybody else who’s here. Okay, so pause, here’s the thing. There are people there who have finished. Like, I know his background cause I had to ask him all these questions when he first came. There are people, there are patients there who finished college. Right. This is just somebody someone who’s like, I’m smarter than the rest of you because I, I don’t even know. Like, I know that this person, like, once ran a company, once worked at various companies. But I was like, in terms of like intelligence or like book smarts, I’m like, you’re kind of like, you know, on the lower rung of the ladder. So that’s what I’m saying. Like, I was just like, Oh, word. I was like, No, you’re actually not. But this is something that he really believes. And if you want to if you really want to have like a terrible day, argue with someone who’s delusional, that is the last, like I don’t do it. I don’t do it. Like, I’m just like, mm mm hmm. Like, my favorite word that comes out of my mouth, like, when I’m at work is like, yes, yes, yes. Because I’m not arguing with you. Like, I’m not arguing with your delusion. Like, you believe it. I just want to get off the phone and, like, you know, go live my life. Like, I’m not going to sit here and be like. But didn’t you? Because when you challenge a narcissist, it’s like. It’s almost like they’re reliving the trauma. Of not being loved. And then it’s like, but I did do this and I did do that. And they, it’s like they can’t even it’s like it becomes so irrational. Like their thoughts become so irrational. They’re just like I. And then they just start getting upset and mad. And when you see somebody getting very emotional and they get loud, that’s when, you know, they’re really not. They’re not thinking clearly. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Like they’re they’re just like I. If I’m the loudest, then people can hear me better and therefore I’m right. And it’s like, no, that, that that’s not how Einstein that’s not what Einstein used to do. I don’t remember Einstein yelling about E equals MC square and I’m right. And all y’all is stupid and– it doesn’t work like that. [laughing]


MegScoop Thomas: So. So then if that’s the case, so then basically for somebody to become a narcissist means something happened to them. They weren’t just like born, like immediately born a narcissist and like, oh, I have this– 


Dr. Imani Walker: Exactly. 


MegScoop Thomas: –Disorder because I was born with it. So it’s developed over with some kind of like trauma of some sort. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. It’s developed um. With with um pretty much the majority, I would say, of personality disorders. Um. It it’s develops as a result of. Yeah. Trauma to that person. 


MegScoop Thomas: You know, you know what, that’s like. That makes so much sense about narcissism because I’ve dated narcissists and I will tell you that now that I’m like thinking back on all of them, all of them had some kind of like Mom wasn’t there, Dad wasn’t there or, you know. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: Some kind of issue like that. Or you know, I had to raise myself and– 


Dr. Imani Walker: Oh. 


MegScoop Thomas: it really is like, Oh, that’s how you got like this. 


Dr. Imani Walker: That’s a hallmark. Let me tell you something about narcissists. They like I’m self-made. I did it all myself. It’s like, no, you didn’t. You know you didn’t. You did not. Like, oh, you you learned how to wipe your ass by yourself? You learned how to walk by yourself? Like you didn’t. They’re like I’m a self-made. I need nobody help. I did it all myself. It’s like you’re a and again like I said, when you challenge them, they get more upset because. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mm hmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: It’s basically you. It’s taking them back to a time when they like. Like people didn’t. People like. You, like you challenging them is like you telling them or that you don’t care. Like, like like basically shunning them. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right, right, right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: And they create these like it’s like that delusion creates this, like, impenetrable wall that they can’t see past. Like, it’s. And the funny thing about narcissists is they do this because their self-worth is so low. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mhm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: It’s so low. Like they really don’t have a very good view of themselves like when you strip all the bullshit away. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Like they’ll never say it. They’ll never say it.


MegScoop Thomas: They’ll never say that. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: They’ll never say it. Yeah. Yeah.


MegScoop Thomas: Oooo Imani, you’re about to get me in trouble because I’m over here acting like a hood psychiatrist when I see, [?] what is your trauma? I noticed you have narcissism. What is your trauma? Because it comes from somewhere. You about to get me in trouble. Okay? 


Dr. Imani Walker: No, they would probably, like, explode. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right, for sure. 


Dr. Imani Walker: They don’t know. They don’t. They don’t know how. It’s like I don’t have any trauma. I did it all by myself. Like, that’s really what would what that’s really what it will boil down to. Um, another like, you know, like, of course, Imani, um obvious trait of narcissists is that they, they really can’t handle any type of, like, criticism, even if it’s constructive. Like, I love constructive, constructive criticism. I do. 


MegScoop Thomas: Me too. 


Dr. Imani Walker: I’m like, tell me how I can be a better person. 


MegScoop Thomas: I might argue you down, but I still want to hear it. [laughter]


Dr. Imani Walker: I mean, they’re like oftentimes, oftentimes too. Narcissists will seek to be around other people who all, who like because narcissists view themselves as unique. Like, I’m different, I’m unique, I’m so much smarter than all y’all. Ehhh. And they’ll they’ll try to to surround themselves with other people who also have an inflated sense of self. And then it creates this like narcissist, like feedback loop, where it’s basically a bunch of people who have no self-esteem, like bigging each other up. [laughing]


MegScoop Thomas: Or I would say also I’ve seen the case where like narcissists will surround themselves with people who are– 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yes Meg. 


MegScoop Thomas: –what they would consider like technically less and less education, less money, less, you know, status, less everything. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yes. 


MegScoop Thomas: So that they can be the one that’s put on the pedestal. 


Dr. Imani Walker: No, that’s that’s actually a really good point. Um. I’ve always it’s always been a red flag to me when like basically what you describe, like I’ll know somebody and then I’m like, you know, like you kind of have a sense that like, okay, these people that they’re surrounding themselves with are, you know, maybe not as learned. Maybe their vocabulary isn’t as like, you know, as expansive. And they’re there. They have these people around them so that they can feel better. And it’s just kind of like, ugh, that’s kind of gross. Like, your friends should be reflections of yourself. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: And not people that you use so that you can feel better about yourself. It’s, um, you know, it’s, it’s really, it’s really weird. Um.


MegScoop Thomas: And I’ve, I’ve always felt like your friends should be. You should be the your friends should be smarter than you. You should be like the dumbest one in the room. And when I say that, I mean, not like. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: Book dumb. I’m talking about, like, when you look at who I have around me, you’ll be like, well, dang your crew is who I should always feel like I need to do more because, like, my friends are that dope. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: I don’t. And when I’m around people who don’t have that same understanding, it does make me look at them different, like, oh, so you probably are suffering from narcissism or something like that because why wouldn’t you want to be around people that are smarter than you or have more education in this area or have more like something in another area? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. Yeah. I mean, if there’s any if there’s like basically a take away like two takeaways that I would like for people to um for anybody listening to take away. As far as this discussion about narcissism, it’s that people who are narcissists, they are very vulnerable and they’re very defensive. Which sounds like a lot of people. It’s just that there are people who are vulnerable and sensitive who may be you know, may have dependent personality disorder, where it’s kind of like the opposite of narcissism. Uh. People with dependent personality disorder, it’s always like are constantly seeking validation, and they always feel less than. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mm hmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Where somebody who’s narcissist, they’re just like, well, I’m the best, and I’m smarter than everybody in here. And all you people are stupid. So get out my face. Um, so, yeah, narcissists. Uh. I would be surprised. Honestly, I would be surprised if anybody could say like, oh, I’ve never encountered one because you have. You absolutely have.


MegScoop Thomas: No. No, if they say that they are the narcissists. [laughing]


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. Exactly. Exactly. Um.


MegScoop Thomas: Well, is it treatable? Can you, like, be cured from narcissism? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Um. No. I mean, that’s I mean, I’ll put it to you like this. I’ve never treat– I’ve never treated a narcissist who came in and said, I have narcissistic personality disorder. I need help. I mean, why would they? 


MegScoop Thomas: But wait, have you ever got– have you ever gotten er I mean, I’m assuming most narcissists don’t believe that they’re narcissists, so they don’t say that. But like, have you ever treated somebody over time, they started to get it and started to go, okay, I need to be more empathetic or something like that. 


Dr. Imani Walker: No. 


MegScoop Thomas: Really? 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. Because they’re like, I’m perfect. There’s nothing wrong with me. 


MegScoop Thomas: So wait when you talk to them about, like, their trauma and their past is that, there’s no like, there’s no breaking down. Like, Oh, I can see the connections now. 


Dr. Imani Walker: They sometimes. I mean, I can’t speak for. I can’t speak for everybody, but. [sigh] How do I say this? When it comes to narcissists and their past traumas, they tend to either not want to talk about it or they’ll gl– they’ll gloss over it or they’ll completely change the narrative. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Like Trump will say of his father, like, oh, my father was awesome. He was the best. He prov–you know, he uh provided me with everything that I have when in reality, his father was not a very nice person to him. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah.


Dr. Imani Walker: But because. But because if you’re a narcissist, like you’re perfect, why would you be able to suggest that, like, your family was less than? Now, sometimes I have encountered people who I knew were narcissists, but. But I didn’t say anything. And they, and a lot of times, like, they will blame like one like one parent in particular. Like my dad wasn’t around or but then you kind of find out that their dad was kind of a narcissist. So it’s kind of like. Well. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. It doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s a genetic component. I personally believe that it’s more so experienced and trauma based. Um, but when you have a parent, let’s say, who believes that their self-worth is that much greater, and then that parent ends up withholding emotional support. And in a lot of cases, the child may end up acting just like the parent. A.), because they already have a blueprint in the house. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Um and also because, you know, they can identify it’s like, well, maybe I am the most awesome person in the world because I’m smarter than everybody. So everybody just needs to just bow down to me and shut up. So, yeah, I’ve never treated one. 


MegScoop Thomas: ooo girl. I’m gonna all everybody narcissists. I see it. You’re a narcissist. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. Yeah, I mean, you can. [laughter] I mean, with a true narcissist, they they it ain’t it ain’t never like they’re like. Well, no, I’m not like I’m. But I am– 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Better than everybody, I’m like uhh whatever. Like, you still suck. Like, something about everyone. Like someone. Everyone isn’t great at everything. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: But they’ll never– 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: –admit that. I’m the best. I’m the best. [?] And it’s like, Oh, you sound stupid. So anyway, um that’s narcissism. And I’m sure that a lot of you guys listening um have encountered narcissists. I mean, if you really want to get rid of a narcissist, just kind of just be very like when I encounter narcissists, I’m definitely very um, I’m just like, oh, okay. Wow. [laughter] Because– 


MegScoop Thomas: You don’t talk em up. Yeah. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. No, they’re not going to get that from me. But people who are like, Oh, my God, tell me more. They’re like, Oh, my God, this is so fun. I get to, like, tell people all these lies that I manufacture. So in any case, that’s narcissism. So I really hope that that helped all you guys out there listening. Um. That’s all the time that we have for our Deep Dive discussion today. Uh.


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah, I think it’s a good time to switch gears and get to our favorite segment of the show. Pop Culture Diagnosis. [music break]


Dr. Imani Walker: Okay. Let’s get right into our pop culture diagnosis for this week. Okay. So, Meg, can you give our listeners a quick synopsis of the Netflix suspenseful series everyone is talking about right now. Echoes and the character known as Leni. 


MegScoop Thomas: Girl. This show is crazy. Okay? You think you know what’s going to happen, but you don’t know. So uh if you haven’t watched this show, there are a bunch of spoiler alerts so you can go ahead and skip, skip, skip to the end of this episode so we don’t ruin it for you. But basically Echoes is about identical twin sisters, Leni and Gina, and they’ve been swapping lives since they were children, which I always thought was cool. I always said if I had an identical twin, like, we would be each other. But now these girls have taken it to the next level like they legit as adults switch lives every year on their birthday. Like. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Mmm mm. 


MegScoop Thomas: Leni goes to be Gina. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Y’all trippin. 


MegScoop Thomas: Gina goes to be Leni for a year. That’s crazy, right? So I’m sitting here like, wait, so y’all are having sex with each other’s husbands? Like. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right? Eew. 


MegScoop Thomas: Eew. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Eew. 


MegScoop Thomas: But. All right, I guess if you gonna share. Share with your sister. I guess.


Dr. Imani Walker: I guess. Ugh. Yuck.


MegScoop Thomas: So. But there are dire consequences because one of the twins goes missing and then that causes both of their lives to, you know, fall apart. And Leni is she’s probably the one that’s more of the struggling twin. She’s married uh she has a daughter. She works in a ranch. And then Gina, she’s got the more flashy lifestyle, she’s an author. She lives in the city with her husband. Um, so as the show goes on, you see Leni, she’s starting to unravel and then her true evil ways begin to reveal themselves. So we’re going to diagnose her. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Okay, so then who’s the psychopath? Gina or Leni? 


MegScoop Thomas: Leni. Leni is legit the psycho. She’s the crazy one.


Dr. Imani Walker: Leni is legit. Okay. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yeah, she’s the crazy one. We, we think it’s like Gina. Or, we think, you know, we think she, Gina is the one that’s caused all these problems. But the truth is, it was Leni that either talked Gina into say, you know, taking the blame for stuff. It was always, Leni was always the one that was– 


Dr. Imani Walker: Okay. 


MegScoop Thomas: Like manipulative. 


Dr. Imani Walker: That kind of makes sense because. Leni. Okay, so Leni and Gina were pregnant at the same time. 


MegScoop Thomas: Mm hmm. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. Again, this is a, we’re full into spoilers. Y’all need to know that this is a spoiler alert. Okay. So Leni and Gina were pregnant at the same time. Gina lost the baby. Okay. Now, years later. Leni living as Gina pitched a book about the, about her miscarriage. The problem, though, is that Leni didn’t have the miscarriage. 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


[spoken together] Gina did. 


MegScoop Thomas: And and Gina is the author. And Gina didn’t feel you know, she didn’t feel comfortable sharing that information or, you know, pitching a book. I’m going to write a book about my miscarriage. She wasn’t trying to do all that. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: Messed up. 


Dr. Imani Walker: So, Leni, out here wilin I mean. 


MegScoop Thomas: She is. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Also, I mean, I know that twins names don’t have to rhyme, but I don’t know where Gina and Leni came from. 


MegScoop Thomas: I don’t like that. I like when twins names either start with the same letter or like rhyme. I don’t know why I feel like that. [laughter] It’s like, it must do. Like, for example, my dad has a twin sister, and my dad’s name is Delma Eugene. Her name is Thelma Irene. And I’m like, that’s [?]. 


Dr. Imani Walker: That’s that’s cute. 


MegScoop Thomas: It’s super country, but it still is like matching, right? I just feel like they need to match somehow. Leni and Gina don’t match. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. I’m like, is Leni short for, like, Lenithea? [laughter] Lenithea and Ginethea? I don’t know girl. 


MegScoop Thomas: Girl. That’s a different. That’s a different show. That’s our Real Housewives of Atlanta. [laughing]


Dr. Imani Walker: I know. But I was like Leni? Like, I mean, I was, you know, I’m Black, so I’m like Lenithea? 


MegScoop Thomas: Right. 


Dr. Imani Walker: And Ginethea? 


MegScoop Thomas: Leni and Gina. They need to rhyme, something. 


Dr. Imani Walker: They need to rhyme.


MegScoop Thomas: So this is. Right. So I don’t know. I feel like. Well, definitely. I think, Leni, I mean, we see that she’s she has postpartum depression because when she had her baby. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Yes. 


MegScoop Thomas: You know, she–


Dr. Imani Walker: Yes. 


MegScoop Thomas: –Nearly let her baby drown, um which is kind of what prompted all of this so that Leni could go live as her sister. 


Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 


MegScoop Thomas: And then Gina could live as Leni and get to see what motherhood is like by being a mom. 


Dr. Imani Walker: In any case, in any case, this was this was probably the most complicated pop culture diagnosis, only because I couldn’t keep like the twins straight. [laughter] So maybe their names could be Gina and Rina. I don’t I don’t know. I don’t know. But all I know is Leni has some issues. Leni is was a psychopath in this show. Um. I’m gonna definitely tune in for season two, though, because probably by then I would have forgotten all this and been like, I don’t know what’s happening. So so that that being said, that’s it for pop culture diagnosis. We had a lot of fun. Um. 


MegScoop Thomas: Yes. 


Dr. Imani Walker: I was, I’m still very confused. Oh, we’re going to have another fun character to analyze next week. If you guys who were listening, have suggestions for fictional characters out there that you want for me to diagnose. Hit me up on Twitter at @doctor_imani. Hit Meg up on Instagram at @megscoop and email the show at And again, if you’re enjoying the show, please don’t forget to rate and review the show on your favorite podcast apps. Thank you everybody for listening to another episode of Imani State of Mind. Thank you as always to Meg for co-hosting. And we’ll be back for an all new episode next week. [music break] This is a Crooked Media production. Our executive producer is Sandy Girard. Our producer is Leslie Martin. Music from Vasilis Fotopoulos. Edited by Veronica Simonetti. And special thanks to Brandon Williams, Gabi Leverette, Mellani Johnson and Matt DeGroot for promotional support.