What is a narcissist?
In a world full of instant gratification, seeking likes and followers on social media has reached an all-time high. The result has placed the term narcissist at forefront of pop culture. From selfies to the selfish “ME” mindset, it is often difficult to find the “WE” when it comes to relationships.
A narcissistic person is an individual who identifies as having a lack of empathy for other people and has a constant need for admiration. People with this condition generally display arrogance, selfishness, manipulative, and demanding behaviors to receive exactly what they want from others.
A person with these tendencies often dramatizes situations creating urgency in getting their needs met while throwing the other party off-kilter to their sense of entitlement. They believe they are special, placing themselves on a pedestal due to a higher sense of success, power, beauty, intelligence or ideal romance.
When it comes to dating a narcissist, it can be fun in the beginning as their charming manipulative words make you feel special. But before long, they begin to appear emotionally abusive because they think they are better than you – completely flipping the switch once they have you under their control.
Here are 13 Personality Traits You’re In A Relationship With A Narcissist:
1. Breaks Boundaries
The second you set a boundary based on your needs, they seem to disappear into the distance. (A boundary is when you communicate your need to your partner based on your limitations or where you draw the line of respectful behavior. Your limitations are derived from your core values and give you a place to speak from when establishing boundaries. Core values are based on a set of beliefs in which you operate from accordingly to seek fulfillment in life.) They do not believe boundaries are something they need to abide by as they have a strong sense of superiority over you. As you try to set a boundary with them, it will only fall on deaf ears and lead to nowhere.
As time goes by, you start to miss them because they are no longer talking to you. You end up dismissing your needs because the need to be with them outweighs the pain they are causing you. You find yourself forgiving them, as the narcissist will pick back-up where they left off by charming their way back into your life. You cannot stay mad at them for too long, as they know how to prey on your weaknesses.
2. Manipulates Every Situation In Their Favor
They will go out of their way to ask you to do a favor for them. Being a kind person, you agree and hope they will help you in a time of need in when the opportunity presents itself in the future. But, in all reality, they are only considering their needs and not yours when they ask for a helping hand. Before long, you will feel a sense of disrespect because you do not end up benefiting from the situation. You begin to feel used as they tend to fall short in giving in return.
It’s their way or the highway.
3. Lacks Responsibility and Accountability
A narcissist is never wrong, even if they make a mistake. They immediately blame and attack you for their lack of whereabouts and say, ”I do not owe you an explanation” when they fail to show up for your joint plans.
They rarely follow through with what they say they are going to do because that is too easy. You can spot one easily because they refuse to admit to anything and emotionally shut you out.
Creating chaos is their norm.
They rather downplay their error, then accept responsibility for their behavior. And rarely to do they feel the need to be accountable even if it affects your relationship. It’s their MO. They believe it is okay to take advantage of others because they deserve all the glory and gold. No one is better than them. The “rules” that apply to you, don’t apply to them in reverse; at least so they believe.
4. Tells Lie After Lie
What is even real? Do you ever wonder with them? They tell you how much they love you, shower you with gifts and affection, and the next minute they are seeking attention and communicating flirtatiously with someone of the opposite sex. It does not make much to sense when you thought you were on the same page of respect and loyalty.
How do you even know what to believe at this point in your relationship?
Time will tell, as the truth always prevails.
5. Reacts Negatively To Get Their Way
A narcissist cannot handle disappointment or rejection, so they instantly will act out to get their way and completely avoid you altogether. They may throw a child-like tantrum, talk down to you, give you a cold shoulder or silent treatment, blame you, turn to their vices, or even play the victim so you feel sorry for them.
It is only an act.
6. Believes They Are Above Everyone
They believe they are superior over everyone, including authority. “Why do I need to listen to them when I’m far more intelligent?” Their inflated sense of self derives from an over overcompensation of deep-rooted feelings of insecurity and failure. In all reality, no one is superior or inferior of another human being unless you give power to that belief. Humans are all equal.
7. Exerts Charming and Romantic Gestures
Be careful when engaging with someone who is overly charming or promises false romantic gestures, like luxury vacations or spending too much quality time together too soon in the relationship. This is them trying to keep you on their good side so when they screw up they can use it to their advantage, hoping you disregard their poor behavior.
Do not let it fool you.
Their attractiveness and sweet talk is their way of seducing you so you want them in return. In the beginning stages, they will lay it on heavy only to win you like a prized possession. They appear to be great lovers, but underneath it all, it is to boost their internal weaknesses. Narcissists are typically into you to fulfill their own needs, not to comply with yours. This will leave you feeling less of a person or even alone as they begin to suck the life out of you.
8. Loves To Talk About Themselves Nonstop
No matter what the conversation is about they seem to make themselves the topic of conversation. They feel they need to dominate the conversation and talk about things they like, especially materialistic items. It makes them feel proud that they can purchase luxury cars, the latest watch, diamond jewelry, or new shoes even if they may be living in debt. They only buy things to make it appear like they are living a better life when in reality they are living a lie.
Bragging is the name of their game.
They think about their looks 24/7 and constantly compare themselves to others. They experience really low self-esteem, therefore, always looking at how they can one-up the person they are jealous of whether it’s on social media or in their inner social circle. They rarely leave the house without looking their best because that would against their protocol of “being the best”.
9. Ignores Your Feelings
Anytime you express your feelings, it goes in one ear and out the other. Your feelings take zero priority in their life and they do not care if they hurt you. They know they can move on and find another person who will accept their poor treatment.
This is a sign of emotional abuse.
Unfortunately, they lack the ability to fully understand your feelings and how to work with you. This does not align with their self-image by always putting themselves first. Consider them the most selfish human beings, as they operate from a “ME” mindset versus “WE” mindset.
10. Thinks They Are Above The Law
They could care less what the law says as they do not believe the laws apply to them. And if they get caught, they will manipulate their way out of it as they are crafty at finding loopholes to benefit them. A narcissist does not believe in any rules, they make up their own and live accordingly to them.
They will never admit they are equal to society.
11. Shows Signs Of Control
They are masters as exercising power to prove you wrong or to control you from leaving them. They will make you feel like you are stuck and cannot find anyone better than them. A narcissist will find every way to control you from hanging out with your close friends to telling you what you can spend money on. They do everything in their power to show you who is the boss.
12. Displays Signs Of Infidelity
Because a narcissist cannot live without admiration, they need constant instant gratification from outside sources. They do not know how to be with only one person emotionally and/or physically. They are fearful to be alone and sit with their own issues, as they will never look in the mirror and say “it is me who needs to change”.
The constant chase to seek attention is self-soothing for them, as they lack emotional stability to care for their own needs. A loyal commitment to their partner goes against their beliefs, as they cannot live without putting their own needs and desires first.
13. Preys On Others Emotions
Wondering how come you keep attracting or dating narcissist? They love partners who are emotionally vulnerable because they feed off of your emotions to stay alive. Being openly expressive makes it easy for them to manipulate you and do exactly what they want to do without regard to your feelings. They know the minute they date you, you will become a victim of their vicious love cycle because they know how to impress you then use you on the flip side.
Be proactive in protecting your emotions, as they are a strength to healthy relationships yet a weakness to unhealthy relationships.
If you find yourself dating a narcissist, consider seeking support to become emotionally strong enough to ask for an equal partnership or leave the relationship. It will be challenging to have a healthy relationship with them, as they are not a healthy person. It can be rare for this type of person to work on themselves until they feel they have completely lost you and have nowhere else to turn. Even then, it can be emotionally taxing to continue in this type of relationship where your feelings are dismissed.
Jan and Jillian Yuhas, MA, MFT, CPC are Relationship and Lifestyle advisors who help individuals and couples work through challenging situations to reach a healthier and happier relationship. If you feel you are in a relationship with a narcissist, schedule your complimentary call today and see if coaching is a good fit for you.