Loving a Narcissist
Lets first talk about what a Narcissist is. The word 'narcissism,' hails down from a myth about Narcissus. He was a man who saw his own reflection in a pool and fell in love with it. They think highly of themselves, to the point of believing that others are inferior to them. One of the key characteristics is the lack of empathy they have towards others. There are two different types.
This type starts in childhood, as they were placed superior over their peers which can lead in adulthood. They tend to brag about oneself and be very entitled. They can be very aggressive, dominant, and oversell just how 'important' they are. They are not sensitive and hold a very high sense of self.
This comes from childhood trauma, abuse, or even neglect. These individuals are much more sensitive. Their narcissist traits, help shield themselves from feeling any amount of inadequacy. They hold the same feelings of being inferior and superior when compared to others. However, the often get offended or even anxious when others do not treat them as if they were special.
They are still trying to study this mental disorder, since many do not feel the need to seek help or treatment. However, there are some common traits that they have.
They truly believe that they are above everyone else. They believe that others should obey their wishes no matter what, and that when it comes to rules, they do not apply to them.
They mastered the art of manipulating and controlling behaviors. In the beginning, they try to please or impress you. Eventually, their own needs rise to the surface and overpower you. When they try to relate to others, they tend to keep them at a distance so they can keep full control over the person. They usually exploit a person to make some sort of gain for themselves.
The most common sign, you see in the beginning, is the need to be praised or even admired. They have to have that validation from you. They tend to exaggerate their accomplishments for even more recognition and praise from you. They constantly seek and make you say things to boost their egos.
This is another common sign. They are unwilling and sometimes unable to empathize with your needs, wants, or feelings. This makes it near impossible for them to ever take responsibility for their own actions. They will turn the tables and make it your fault in some twisted way.
Since they have an exaggerated sense of self and see themselves superior, they can become rude or abusive when they do not get the treatment they seek. They will speak and act rudely to you, because they view you as inferior to them.
What can you do?
If you choose to stay in the relationship, it will take work. They will need a huge amount of love and support since they normally do not think they need help. Talking with a professional can help the narcissist start to view your relationship in a different light. They can also help them stop comparing themselves to others, and learn self-compassion.
Now let's talk about loving one
It can be exhausting, mentally draining, and can suck the life right out of you. They will turn everything on you. Your self-worth, will be taken early in the relationship and they will make it feel like no one, expect them, could ever love you! If you chose to walk away, they will make life a living hell for a long time.
If you ask them, a simple question: 'What is it that you love about me?' You will see answers like:
'You are always there for me.'
'You talk me through things and build me up.'
'You answer in a timely manner.'
Their responses are how you treat them. Not that you are a good person, you try to help others, your goals in life and career and so on. It is always about how you cater to their needs.
Another, is breaking things off with a narcissist. Many times, they go to destroy you in any manner possible. Including going to your children's parent and spewing lies about you. In hopes to take the one thing that means the world to you away.
Since you had the courage to break it off with them, they will seek revenge and oftentimes get it.
They will turn your family and friends against you by playing the victim role.
These relationships often end in mental and physical abuse that leads to stalking and even murder. Take steps to prepare yourself if you chose to end the relationship. Make sure you have a safe place to go to where they cannot find you. Take measures to protect yourself at all cost. Record, take pictures, do whatever you have to do to show your side of the story. You have to remember, narcissist can win people over very easily.
Be mindful, that your brain structure changes in these types of relationships. We broke down the ways here https://www.putmefirst.org/post/the-science-behind-why-we-go-back . It would be good to seek help with a professional and feel free to join our support group https://www.facebook.com/groups/1994684207390645/
Leaving such a traumatic relationship is hard. Family and friends will say that they are here for you, but around that two week mark, you will feel like you have no support. This is usually where we see the victim accept the narcissist back. They were fed lines the entire relationship: 'No one will ever love you, treat you, deal with you, like I do.' So as you lose that support structure, those doubts creep in leading you back, because it looks like they were right after all. This is why I urge you to seek help! When your friends and family start failing you, that it is 'taking longer for you to heal,' then what they consider normal. You have others to turn too!
Just know we are here to help!