Hey Optimist Minds!
Are you in a relationship that feels like an emotional roller coaster? Do you sometimes feel like you’re each other’s soulmates but also often feel like you’re trapped?
A toxic relationship could be a warning sign that perhaps you’re dealing with a narcissist. People with narcissistic tendencies struggle to have healthy and meaningful relationships. They usually mistreat their partners and try to keep them under control.
The problem is that when you’re in such a relationship, it’s more likely that you’ll be blaming yourself for the way things are. It might not even occur to you that the reason why things are so turbulent is that your partner isn’t treating you with respect. Narcissists make sure that their partners take the blame for everything that goes wrong.
In this video, we’re going to discuss how to know if your partner is a narcissist. The purpose of this video is to help you recognise the signs so that you can understand the situation better. It should not be used to diagnose or condemn narcissists.
Now, let’s begin. Here are nine signs you are dating a narcissist.
When you first met your partner, it felt like a dream.
Did this person have you head over heels because of their charming and affectionate ways? Did they go out of their way to make you feel seen and admired?
Narcissists try to give the first impression of charisma and confidence. At the beginning of any relationship, they portray themselves as highly interested in the person they are wooing. They might even use grand gestures to get your attention.
Once you start noticing them, they’ll mirror you to make you like them more. Sometimes, narcissists pretend to like or do the same things as you so that they appear to be a good match. If you do show interest in them, the honeymoon phase of your relationship will begin. Everything will feel incredibly romantic as the narcissist will have you on a pedestal.
Love bombing and devaluation.
As long as the honeymoon phase lasts, the narcissist will shower you with affection. When you first started dating, did your partner repeatedly tell you how amazing you are? Did they give you frequent compliments and tokens of love? This stage is common to all narcissistic relationships and is called love bombing.
It never lasts for long because it’s entirely normal for partners to have disagreements and conflicts. But, unfortunately, the narcissist lacks the emotional maturity to deal with conflict in healthy ways. Instead, the pedestal vanishes, and before you realise what you did, they start hating you. Experts call this stage devaluation.
The remainder of the relationship oscillates between these two stages till the narcissist gets tired and moves on.
Conversations are always one-sided.
When you and your partner talk about something, does it feel like their opinion matters more? Even after hours of explaining, do you feel like they don’t understand what you’re trying to say?
Narcissists have a very low tolerance for what people have to say if it does not match their views. It feels like they think they’re always right in general discussions, even if they’re proven wrong. In personal conversations, if you bring up a concern, it’s ignored, dismissed, or deflected with a new topic that probably makes you look bad.
They keep cheating on you.
Frequent infidelity is a common occurrence in narcissistic relationships. Does your partner shamelessly flirt with others? Are you suspecting them of lying to you about seeing other people? If your partner is a narcissist, they’ll completely deny doing any of it even if you catch them red-handed.
On the rare chance that they admit they’ve betrayed you, they’ll blame you for it. They might say you’re not good enough for them or that they’re sick of your screw-ups. A narcissistic partner will want you to believe that everything is your fault.
They gaslight you.
Does your partner always tell you that you’re too sensitive or that you’re overreacting? Do they try to convince you that you can’t trust your own judgement? Gaslighting is a form of psychological manipulation that seeks to sow seeds of doubt in a person.
Through persistent denial, misdirection, contradiction, and lying, narcissists try to control people’s thoughts, actions, and feelings.
They want complete control over you.
If your partner told you straight away when you started dating that they wanted total obedience, you wouldn’t have dated them in the first place. That’s why narcissists insidiously take control by forcing you to let go of things one at a time.
By getting upset at you, ignoring you, and using your insecurities against you, the narcissist slowly makes you compromise on your values. Maybe it started with you giving up your favourite food or hangout place. Then, you found yourself making career or financial decisions based on their preference.
Before you knew it, they took over your entire life and now, you’re scared to do anything against their will.
You’re utterly lonely and isolated.
If your partner is a narcissist, they want you cut off from anyone who might expose the abuse. Generally, your family and friends will notice that you’re not acting like your authentic self. So the narcissist will target all your strong emotional ties and alienate you from them.
They could ask you to choose sides, discourage you from making contact, or even punish you for seeing them. What’s worse is that by this point, you’re so confused by the abuse that you might even push away people trying to help you.
One way a narcissist manages to isolate their partner socially is by causing a rift between parties. Does your partner create unnecessary drama between you and your loved ones? Triangulation is a method used by narcissists that involve lying to you about others and vice versa.
By fabricating stories, they attempt to nurture resentment between their partner and other sources of social support. If your partner never makes an effort to nourish important relationships in your life, that’s a big red flag.
Your physical and mental health is getting worse every day.
Are you facing trouble with sleep, appetite, and functionality? Do you struggle to get work done or have productive days?
Recently, narcissism has been labelled the second-hand smoke of mental health. That’s because anyone staying in close proximity to a narcissist is bound to have deteriorating psychological and physiological health.
Did any of these nine signs seem relatable to you? Are you going through the problems we described? If yes, then you may be dating a narcissist. Even if that isn’t so, we recommend that you consult a mental health professional to understand what you can do to improve your situation.
Let us know in the comments if you think this video helped you or someone you know. 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.