Expect to be recognized as superior even without achievements. Make achievements and talents seem bigger than they are. Be preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate. Believe they are superior to others and can only spend time with or be understood by equally special people.
Narcissistic partners act as if they are always right, that they know better and that their partner is wrong or incompetent. This often leaves the other person in the relationship either angry and trying to defend themselves or identifying with this negative self-image and feeling badly about themselves.
Here are some narcissism red flags to look out for: Lacking empathy. They seem unable or unwilling to have empathy for others, and they appear to have no desire for emotional intimacy. Unrealistic sense of entitlement.
Narcissists view partners as trophies under their power and may expect partners to show deference and adoring behavior throughout the relationship. Manipulation of a partner is emotional abuse, and narcissists resort to some pretty low behaviors if they feel that they are losing their hold on a partner.
There are plenty of tell-tale signs, like self-importance, a lack of empathy, a demanding personality and an excessive need for admiration.
While an outward show of superiority is a definite part of the narcissistic personality, a sense of superiority (or pursuit of it) is not the central factor of the disorder. The root of the disorder is actually a strict resistance to feeling vulnerable with anyone at any time.
Some common examples of narcissistic abuse include:
When you don't do what an abuser wants, they may try to make you feel guilty or fearful. Insults: Verbal abuse like name-calling, harsh criticism, and other insults are ways for those with narcissistic personality disorder to chip away at a victim's self-esteem.
They won't change. You may think that when a narcissist truly falls in love, they change for the better. Unfortunately, in most situations, that is not the case. And because of that, they tend to turn abusive or remain self-absorbed.
Control, control, control. A narcissist needs to have control over the situation they're in. Whether that's in a relationship, in a social scenario, or something else, a narcissist will manipulate the circumstances to maintain control.
Empathy for others and recognition of their needs. Authentic self-concept. Self-respect and self-love. Courage to abide criticism from others while maintaining positive self-regard.
Narcissists are motivated by feeling superior and expanding their power, and so the only things that matter when helping others are receiving adulation, fame, influence, opportunities, notoriety, and other resources. They dont actually care about others because to them other people are just things to use.
Toxic People, for the Most Part, Are Narcissists
Narcissists have absolutely no concerns outside of their own needs and desires. They don't care about the people around them as much as they care about themselves.
Overt narcissism, also called agentic narcissism, is what you might think of as the “classic” and most obvious form of NPD. Someone experiencing overt narcissism is excessively preoccupied with how others see them.
One of the most common early indicators of narcissism is what's known as the love-bombing phase. At the beginning of the relationship, the narcissist will often come on very strong, put you on a pedestal, and make you feel incredibly special.
Narcissists also gaslight or practice master manipulation, weakening and destabilizing their victims; finally, they utilize positive and negative emotions or moments to trick others. When a narcissist can't control you, they'll likely feel threatened, react with anger, and they might even start threatening you.
So when they encounter a piece of information about narcissism they immediately might feel exposed, ashamed, betrayed, or attacked. Moreover, they often take things very personally and think that everything is about them. So they might feel that the author is talking about them personally or calling them out.
It's certainly possible to have a relationship with a narcissist, but it's going to be emotionally and psychologically exhausting. Narcissists drain all the life and spirit from their partner, using them as an emotional — and sometimes literal — punching bag.
Ridiculing you. Those who live with narcissism may find it difficult to hold positive and negative feelings for someone at the same time. As a result, things may get heated in an argument. You may experience insults, put-downs, and even mocking behaviors, like laughing as you express hurt.
Someone engaging in narcissistic abuse often has little respect for boundaries. When you try to set or enforce limits, they might challenge them, completely ignore them, or give you the silent treatment until you do what they want. Eventually, you might give up on your boundaries entirely.