Advice for dealing with a narcissist
Check how they treat their parents, especially their mother. If they treat their mother as a nuisance, it’s not a good sign. If they care and always have time for their mother – this suggests empathy and a caring attitude.. TICK.
Do they ask about you and care about how your day was or do they tend to dominate the conversation with their lives? Narcissists are notorious for being self-absorbed and expect others to take more interest in their lives than they will in yours. If they ask about you and genuinely take an interest in what you are doing, that’s great. Even better if they support you, help you google things for a new business idea etc. When they invest in you and your future, you’re onto a good thing…TICK
PS – narcissists might do this in the beginning (seem interested in you and be on best behaviour), if they are maintaining this behaviour after 6 months, that’s a very good sign. That’s a true test – longevity.
WHAT IS A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP?
Spending a lot of time with someone who has a narcissistic personality can make it hard to remember what a healthy relationship even feels like.
Here’s a few signs to look for:
- both people listen and make an effort to understand each other
- both people acknowledge their mistakes and take responsibility for them
- both people feel like they can relax and be their true selves in front of the other
You may be dating a narcissist if you feel like your partner:
- doesn’t hear you
- won’t understand you
- doesn’t take responsibility for their part in the issue
- doesn’t ever try to compromise
How to deal with a narcissistic partner:
You can’t change them
Despite what someone with a narcissistic personality may say, your wants and needs are likely unimportant to them. And if you try to bring up this issue, you may be met with resistance.
The first step in dealing with someone who has a narcissistic personality is simply accepting that this is who they are — there’s not much you can do to change that.
If you catch them lying, manipulating, or blatantly disrespecting others, there’s no reason to believe they won’t do the same to you.
Don’t always put their needs first
When there’s a narcissistic personality in your orbit, attention seems to gravitate their way. That’s by design — whether it’s negative or positive attention, those with narcissistic personalities work hard to keep themselves in the spotlight.
You might soon find yourself buying into this tactic, pushing aside your own needs to keep them satisfied.
If you’re waiting for a break in their attention-seeking behavior, it may never come. No matter how much you adjust your life to suit to their needs, it’s never going to be enough.
If you must deal with a narcissistic personality, don’t allow them to infiltrate your sense of self or define your world. You matter, too. Regularly remind yourself of your strengths, desires, and goals.
Try not to get visibly flustered or show annoyance, as that will only urge them to continue. If it’s someone you’d like to keep close in your life, then you owe it to yourself to speak up. Try to do this in a calm, gentle manner.
You must tell them how their words and conduct impact your life. Be specific and consistent about what’s not acceptable and how you expect to be treated. But prepare yourself for the fact that they may simply not understand — or care.
Don’t try to win – instead set clear boundaries to protect yourself
A person with a narcissistic personality is often quite self-absorbed.
They might think they’re entitled to go where they want, snoop through your personal things, or tell you how you should feel. Maybe they give you unsolicited advice and take credit for things you’ve done. Or pressure you to talk about private things in a public setting.
They may also have little sense of personal space, so they tend to cross a lot of boundaries. More often than not, they don’t even see them. That’s why you have to be abundantly clear about boundaries that are important to you.
Why would the consequences matter to them? Because someone with a narcissistic personality typically starts to pay attention when things start affecting them personally.
Just make sure it’s not an idle threat. Talk about consequences only if you’re ready to carry them out as stated. Otherwise, they won’t believe you the next time.
Stand your ground
If you stand up to someone with a narcissistic personality, you can expect them to respond.
Once you speak up and set boundaries, they may come back with some demands of their own. They may also try to manipulate you into feeling guilty or believing that you’re the one being unreasonable and controlling. They might make a play for sympathy.
Be prepared to stand your ground. If you take a step backward, they won’t take you seriously next time.
Accept that they are selfish and that they rarely take responsibility for their actions
A person with narcissistic personality disorder isn’t likely to admit a mistake or take responsibility for hurting you. Instead, they tend to project their own negative behaviors onto you or someone else.
You might be tempted to keep the peace by accepting blame, but you don’t have to belittle yourself to salvage their ego.
You know the truth. Don’t let anyone take that away from you.
A few more things:
Narcissists don’t have any (or many) long-term friends
Most narcissists won’t have any long-term, real friends. Dig deeper into their connections and you may notice that they only have casual acquaintances, buddies they trash-talk, and nemeses.
As a result, they might lash out when you want to hang out with yours. They might claim that you don’t spend enough time with them, make you feel guilty for spending time with your friends, or berate you for the types of friends you have.
They will pick on you constantly
Maybe at first it felt like teasing…. but then it got mean or became constant.
Suddenly, everything you do, from what you wear and eat to who you hang out with and what you watch on TV, is a problem for them.
They’ll put you down, call you names, hit you with hurtful one-liners, and make jokes that aren’t quite funny. They might insinuate that you don’t clean as well as they do or pack the dishwasher the correct way..over time you will feel you can’t do anything as well as they do.
A warning sign: If they knock you down with insults when you do something worth celebrating, get away. “A narcissist might say ‘You were able to do that because I didn’t sleep well’ or some excuse to make it seem like you have an advantage that they didn’t have,”.
They want you to know that you’re not better than them. Because, to them, nobody is.
They will gaslight you
Gaslighting is a form of manipulation and emotional abuse, and it’s a hallmark of narcissism. Narcissists may spew blatant lies, falsely accuse others, spin the truth, and ultimately distort your reality.
Signs of gaslighting include the following:
- You no longer feel like the person you used to be.
- You feel more anxious and less confident than you used to be.
- You often wonder if you’re being too sensitive.
- You feel like everything you do is wrong.
- You always think it’s your fault when things go wrong.
- You’re apologizing often.
- You have a sense that something’s wrong, but aren’t able to identify what it is.
- You often question whether your response to your partner is appropriate.
- You make excuses for your partner’s behavior.
“They do this to cause others to doubt themselves as a way to gain superiority. Narcissists thrive off of being worshipped, so they use manipulation tactics to get you to do just that.
How to prepare for a breakup with a narcissist
- Constantly remind yourself that you deserve better.
- Strengthen your relationships with your empathetic friends.
- Build a support network with friends and family who can help remind you what is reality.
- Urge your partner to go to therapy.
- Get a therapist yourself.
You cannot change a person with narcissistic personality disorder or make them happy by loving them enough or by changing yourself to meet their whims and desires. They will never be in tune with you, never empathic to your experiences, and you will always feel empty after an interaction with them.
“Narcissists can’t feel fulfilled in relationships, or in any area of their lives, because nothing is ever special enough for them.
Essentially, you’ll never be enough for them, because they’re never enough for themselves.
“The best thing you can do is cut ties. Offer them no explanation. Offer no second chance. Break up with them and offer no second, third, or fourth chance.
Because a narcissist will most likely make attempts at contacting you and harassing you with calls or texts once they’ve fully processed the rejection, block them to help you stick with your decision.
Remember: This article isn’t meant to diagnose your partner. It’s meant to outline unacceptable behaviors and reactions in the context of a loving, equitable partnership.
None of these signs point to a healthy relationship, NPD or not.
You’re not responsible for their behavior, but you are responsible for taking care of yourself.