A Relationship with a Narcissist
Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) is a kind of personality disorder characterized by exaggerated feelings of self-worth, an extreme need for admiration, a lack of empathy and consideration for other people. According to research, the men and women narcissist ratio is 2:1, which means that on every female narcissist come two men with the same personality disorder.
How to Recognize a Narcissist?
Your partner doesn’t need to be diagnosed with narcissist personality disorder. Nevertheless, they can still have some of the narcissist personality traits that will make your relationship with them a real challenge.
People with narcissistic personality disorder always put their needs first. They usually display demanding, manipulative, arrogant and self-centered behavior. Furthermore, they always have excuses for their actions and tend to blame the others for their failures. Also, your narcissistic partner always knows the best. They may lack empathy for your feelings and needs, never truly paying attention to how you feel or what you want. They may even act demanding and/or controlling and be emotionally abusive.
Does your partner make fun of you and laughs at your flaws in front of your friends or family, but gets offended when their behavior upsets you? On the other hand, your partner expects constant attention and admiration, believing that they are better than anyone else and should be treated correspondingly?
If you recognize your partner’s behavioral patterns in the aforementioned, you may be dealing with a narcissist.
How to Manage a Relationship with a Narcissist?
There are some strategies you can learn so you can handle your relationship with a narcissist.
1. Establish Firm Boundaries
One of the most common issues you’ll face when dealing with a narcissist is their inability of true reciprocity in relationships. Your narcissistic partner doesn’t understand your needs. They tend to build relationships on fusion and codependency which means that they are unable to see you as someone who exists outside of their own needs. For that reason, they may regularly break your boundaries and test your limits.
If keeping up a relationship with a narcissist is important to you, make sure to set firm and healthy boundaries. Let them know which behaviors you will tolerate and which you won’t. The narcissist will most likely try everything to rebel against your boundaries, but you need to stay firm and consistent.
2. Don’t Fall for Narcissist’s Charm
Narcissists can be very charming and appealing. You might be attracted by their confidence and charisma. They will make you feel important, loved, and alive and make you believe that they will fulfill your need to feel valuable. However, this is only a dream. Once you get to know them, you will realize that they don’t look for an equal partner but for someone who will obey and admire them.
Moreover, the narcissists usually manipulate, lie and disrespect other people. So, pay attention at the way your partner treats others, because, eventually, they will treat you the same way. Instead of focusing on satisfying narcissist’s needs, try to focus on your own dreams and your personal growth.
3. Seek Support
If you decide to maintain a relationship with a narcissist, adjust your expectations and have a realistic view of your relationship. Also, surround yourself with positive people. Talk to those who validate you for who you really are and can give you an honest reflection of your thoughts and feelings.
If you feel that your relationship with a narcissist is something you cannot handle alone, search out help.