How to live with a narcissist?

This article will focus on showing you tips on how you can live with a narcissistic partner. It will also discuss how to identify a narcissist, and when it may be time to think about leaving.

How to live with a narcissist?

If you are living with a narcissist, know that there are some tips for living with them. Here is what you can do.

Have your boundaries set, and make them known 

Setting boundaries is an inside job. You need to look at yourself and define what is possible for you to move past, and what is not negotiable to you. Once you identify your boundaries, it may be easier for you to set them and also let the narcissist know what they are.

Having boundaries doesn’t mean that the narcissist will change, and only answer in response to that, but that you will have a clear idea of how far you are willing to go or take in this relationship.

Learn how to identify when they are gaslighting you 

Gaslighting is a common technique used by narcissists. They can use that as a way to try and manipulate you, making you insecure, or even confused. To do that, the narcissist will often act in ways that will make you question if you are right, or even question your sanity.

There are many common phrases a narcissist will use when they are trying to gaslight you. It can be that they tell you that they never said something you remember they did, that you are overreacting, or even that they were only joking.

To not get sucked in by their gaslighting you can talk to other people about what they have said before, or even have that in writing, so you can go back and check. This way you can see that those things happened in reality and that you are not imagining them.

Learn when to detach yourself 

Narcissistic people will often go through emotional outbursts when they realize that they are not getting things their way and that they can be extremely mean, and sometimes even violent. When the narcissist you live with displays those types of behaviors, make sure that you detach yourself from them.

You shouldn’t be available for the narcissist to use you as a punching bag, or a litter bin, in which they can just throw anything they are feeling, without any consideration of how this impacts you.

Learn how negotiation works with a narcissist 

Narcissists want the world to revolve around them, and their needs. Because of that, they will often act in a way that will ensure they dominate you. For example, you may have scheduled to meet them at 3 pm, they can make it a point of just showing up at 3:30 pm to make it shown that you will be there waiting for them.

To prevent that from happening, you will be assertive with your boundaries and may tell them, for example, that the appointment is at 3 pm, and you will wait only until 3:05, and if they are not there, you will leave.

Work on self-care 

Living with a narcissist can test you in so many ways that at some point it can affect your self-esteem or even your sense of self-worth. So if you are in a relationship with a narcissist, you should learn techniques to care for yourself.

It can be going to therapy, or even doing things that show you that you are a potent, and intelligent person. Having in mind some techniques that will help you calm yourself when the narcissist is trying to get you worked up is also important. 

Have a strong support network

Finally, having a strong support network, that knows that the person you are living with is a narcissist can help you have a space to vent, but will also confront you when you start to blame yourself as a response to the narcissist’s manipulation techniques.

Those people can be your friends, family members, or even a therapist that will help you understand the situation you are in, as well as help you become more aware of patterns, and even help you with creating a safety plan if you ever decide to live.

How can I know if the person with whom I am living is a narcissist? 

If you are living with someone, and you are beginning to think they may be a narcissist, it may be helpful to know that a narcissist is often someone that will have a grandiose view of themselves. They will also have trouble experiencing empathy, and will often bond with others based on what type of things others can give them.

A narcissist is also someone that feels like they are entitled to things, and because of that, they deserve special treatment. They also think they are superior to others, and spend a lot of time, and energy having fantasies about success.

When is it time to leave a narcissist? 

Sometimes living with a narcissist can become too difficult, so it may be time for you to leave them. You may want to do that when the relationship with the narcissist has become toxic, which they often will over time.

So if you ever feel that you have started to isolate yourself from others, or even that you are questioning your attitude or your sense of reality, it may be time to leave. Aside from that, you should leave when you realize the two of you are stuck on the same pattern of arguments.

Living with a narcissist can also become a problem when you notice that you are justifying their behaviors constantly. And even though they can sometimes promise they will change, you may notice that are all mostly false promises.

If you notice that this is what is happening, you may choose to leave, and healing from that may not be the easiest thing. As you do, keep in mind what narcissism is, so you don’t get sucked back in.

Having people you can count on will also be extremely helpful in that time, the same way as working on yourself, especially with a therapist to care for yourself, but also to understand the patterns that have brought you to this relationship.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): How to live with a narcissist? 

Is there a cure to narcissism? 

No, there is no cure for narcissism. What will often happen is that a narcissist will, at some point, understand that some of their narcissistic traits are detrimental to their life, and they can look for professional help to deal with it.

In that, they will often look for a therapist. With them, they will likely be able to deal with the grandiose view they have of themselves and understand how to adjust the expectations they have of themselves, and on others.

It may also happen that they will be able to create more realistic goals for themselves so they don’t feel so frustrated as they did before. It is important to keep in mind that there is no medication to treat narcissism, but it can be that sometimes they will take medication to deal with other conditions such as anxiety, or depression.

Will a narcissist miss me if I leave them? 

It can be that, at some point, the narcissist will miss you once you leave. But you need to keep in mind that, for a narcissist missing you won’t mean the same thing as it would be for you to miss them.

A narcissist will likely only miss you because of what you used to give them. It could be that you gave them power, money, or even constant praise, so as you leave them, and they don’t find another person to fulfill their need, they will likely begin to miss you.

 What type of people are narcissists attracted to?

Narcissists are often attracted to people that can give them power, or success. They will often be interested in people that are more self-assured, and confident. But in time, the relationship with that type of person may not go so well since the self-assured person won’t be willing to give the narcissist all the attention, and praise they need.

Because of that, at some point it can be that they start looking for a more insecure person, that is not so self-assured, and that is willing to give the narcissist all the praise they need and put them in the center of their lives.

Do narcissists go back to their exes? 

Yes, a narcissist will go back to their exes if their former partner still wants them. But it is important to keep in mind that this is not connected to love. The narcissist will likely come back because they know that their exes will give them all the praise they desire.

So if after the relationship is over, the narcissist realizes that they are not getting their narcissistic supply field elsewhere, they can go back to their exes. They will likely only not go back when their exes cut all ties with them, leaving the narcissist with no other option.

How do I know a narcissist is done with me?

When a narcissist is done with you, likely, they will simply discard the person. This means that they will stop showing emotions to the person, and can begin to criticize them often.

If you are in touch with the narcissist often, when they are done with you, they can become more irritable, or angry, and start to pick fights with you, while still trying to take advantage of you.

When they are done with you, they will often gaslight you to make you feel bad. They can also begin to ignore you, to the point that they will stop communicating with you completely, disappearing from your life.

Is it possible to make a narcissist feel bad?

Yes, you can make a narcissist feel bad by showing them that they are no longer in control over you. If they feel that you won’t abide by their opinions, or if you begin to act unpredictably, they can feel bad.

Narcissists will also feel bad whenever they are confronted with the fact that they are not perfect. It can be that they feel bad if they don’t get a job promotion, or if they are facing financial troubles, for example.


This article focused on giving tips on how to live with a narcissist. It also showed you the best ways to know that the person you are with is a narcissist, and when it is time to leave a relationship with a narcissist person.

If you have any questions or comments about this article, feel free to write them in the section below.


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