That unwavering self-confidence is as brittle as an eggshell. Narcissists don’t move back and forth on a continuum of self-esteem as the rest of us do. … Under that fragile, brittle cover lies a hidden pool of insecurity and pain. Deep down, the narcissist’s deepest and most powerful fear is that he is a nothing.
People in the narcissist’s life have to go to great lengths to secure their approval, if that’s even possible. In the end, we do want to make them happy. Perhaps if they were satisfied, we think, we could all be joyful and content together. This is an impossibility.