Hey Optimist Minds!
If you’ve had an ugly experience with a narcissist before, you’ll start noticing them everywhere. The truth is that narcissistic tendencies are a lot more common than we realise.
A lack of awareness regarding narcissism makes us blind to the prevalence of these behaviour patterns. Instead, even when we realise that a person is self-absorbed, entitled, or antagonistic, we don’t fully understand how to handle it. As a result, we might think that we got off on the wrong foot with them or that we’ll win them over if we do something right.
Unfortunately, our actions have very little influence over a narcissist’s behaviour. The most that you can do is repel them to spare you and find another target. In this video, we’re going to explain how to avoid vulnerable narcissistic abuse.
Please note that these are suggestions and not professional interventions. Plus, the tips mentioned here will only work with vulnerable narcissists. If you’re dealing with a grandiose narcissist, some of these might backfire.
Before you try any of these ways, it’s best to determine what kind of a narcissist you are dealing with. You can find resources for further reading in the description to understand what a vulnerable narcissist looks like.
Now, here are five ways to repel a vulnerable narcissist.
Keep the debt balance at zero.
If the narcissist asks you to make a decision for them, encourage them to do it on their own. Similarly, if they will try to do you a big favour, decline their offer.
Dependency features significantly in the relationships of most vulnerable narcissists. If a close relationship comes to an end, they will desperately seek someone new to depend on for support and care.
When you assist the narcissist in doing something they can manage on their own, they see you as a potential caregiver. By encouraging their independence, you dodge the bullet of narcissistic abuse.
At the same time, you don’t want to take any favours from them either. They’ll probably use this to make you feel like you owe them. It’ll create a power dynamic that they will misuse to reel you into codependency.
Establish clear boundaries.
Vulnerable narcissists don’t like to waste their time with people who are comfortable saying no. If you’re assertive about your needs and can easily stand up for yourself, you’re of no use to a narcissist.
Individuals with narcissistic tendencies generally target people they can control and manipulate. Someone with blurred boundaries is perfect for this as they can be convinced to do things against their will.
Maybe you’re a bit of a people-pleaser because you avoid confrontation. The vulnerable narcissist will see that as a green signal. Learn to uphold your boundaries if you want the light to be red.
Look for a healthy approach to love.
You can discourage the vulnerable narcissist by asking for your space. Suppose you talk about any plans that don’t involve them, like moving somewhere for your career or going on a solo trip. Seeing you determined to prioritise your life goals will repel them away.
Vulnerable narcissists tend to have an unrealistic concept of love. They seek a romantic partner who can take up the responsibility of dealing with their dysregulated emotions. So they might insist on moving the relationship at a pace you’re not ready for, and they’ll expect you to put them first at all times.
If you’re vocal about your needs and you motivate them to look after themselves, they’ll lose interest at the drop of a hat.
Bank on self-awareness.
Individuals with vulnerable narcissism may use manipulative tactics like gaslighting and emotional blackmail. They’ll try to use your insecurities against you to control you. By doing your own deep dive and understanding your personality, you can cover your blind spots and recognise the manipulation as it happens.
For example, your childhood experiences may have caused you to develop a need for validation. The vulnerable narcissist will do their homework and find out what can give them power over you. If they figure out your need to be validated, they’ll use praise as a reward and harsh criticism as a punishment to get you to comply.
If you learn to identify the psychological causes for your behaviour, it’s easier to stop the manipulation. Then, unable to control you anymore, the narcissist will leave you alone.
Give just the one second chance.
Most vulnerable narcissists end up creating an abusive relationship. In their attempts to control their surroundings, they might abuse you emotionally, physically, or even sexually. The shift from a seemingly ordinary relationship to an abusive one isn’t sudden. It takes a lot of conflicts and making up to get to that point.
Some of these conflicts can involve you compromising on your boundaries. They may do something unacceptable, but you forgive them because you see the good in them. Sadly, this is an endless cycle, and you’ll probably end up giving them another chance for the hundredth time.
When the first offence happens, forgive them but stay cautious. Assert that they can’t keep getting away with this. Vulnerable narcissists hate being forced to take accountability, so this should ward them off.
Did the examples we described here sound familiar to you? Do you think that a vulnerable narcissist might by targeting you to be their romantic partner? Then, you can try these techniques to keep them at bay and protect your sanity.
Let us know in the comments if you think this video helped you. In addition, a link for further reading and the studies & references used in the making of this video are mentioned in the description below.
Thanks for visiting optimist minds, take care. Until next time.