I was writing about a friend of mine. I'm a little curious if anyone else knows people like this too.
If personal inquiries were bullets then you’re charisma would be the stuff of ceramic plates and kevlar vests. Because you don’t just use your charm to get to know other people. You also use your charm to make sure other people don’t get to know you. The real you.
It’s fair to say I know a lot of charismatic people. But you, my friend, take it to a whole new level. I say that because most of these charismatic people I know use their charm to relate to other people. Most of them use this magic - this sorcery - to captivate and communicate with complete strangers in a way that I never could. Some of them can enter the most random and impromptu of situations and, within seconds, have me believing it’s what they intended all along. Looking from the outside, it’s like a unique language they instantly tailor to the people around them - and it’s a process that’s so natural to them I sometimes think every single stranger they encounter must surely be a lifelong friend.
But as impressive as all that is, you, my friend, are on a whole new level. Sure, you use your charisma to do these things. But there's also something else that you’re doing as well. You’re using your charisma as a defense. You use it to disarm and ease the people around you while simultaneously wielding it as a shield. Personal questions are deflected. Intimate beliefs are protected. And intentions are always shielded well out of view.
You make friends everywhere you go. And yet you have few friends you can relate to.
There's a chance your friend isn't acting out of malice or sheer calculation.
It may well be that the individual you are referring to is so damaged that they're simply operating out of self-preservation. By cloaking distance with charm and witty repartee, your friend is simply trying to fulfill their human need for social interaction whilst remaining emotionally secluded in safety.
You cannot get hurt when the people around you aren't psychologically close enough to hurt you.
You're dealing with a very broken individual, @Coded Logic. I know this because you may as well have been writing about me.
Yes, I know people like that, and at times I have acted like that myself. I pull my charisma when it counts, though.
Some use humor in the same way. In fact, I would propose that many comedians are good at it from having used it as a defense mechanism much of their lives.
Sounds like you're describing narcissism.