I am just scratching the surface, but I have stumbled across a bunch of new information that I want to research and study more. So far, I have realized that I have always been attracted to and be involved with people that have some sort of Narcissistic trait. And though these relationships, I have sacrificed and damaged my self esteem so bad that I was on the verge of a depression break down. I am not blaming anyone, only myself, I am responsible for my own choices in life. As I am reading up on this, I learned that Narcissist cannot change, they are not doing it on purpose, they became this way early in life. I can go on, but if you want to know more yourself, click the links below, it opened my eyes in a positive way.
This new awakening has opened my eyes to a new and brighter future. I cannot wait to read and study up on this subject. So far as I read these articles about it, it is like someone got into my head and wrote what I have been feeling and dealing with all my life in some form or degree. I ordered more books and cannot wait to understand it all more!!
Here is just a Few Links online that I have found & read and so far it has helped me out greatly!!
Narcissistic Relationships - The Signs Of Narcissism.
The first step is to recognise the signs.
They always exaggerate their achievements and talents making everything in their power to gain everybody's attention and recognition. Most of the times they are arrogant and self absorbed to fulfill what they see as their special destiny.
Narcissists will indulge in fantasies of tremendous power, success or beauty, being addicted to the attention and admiration that others manifest. You will find much snobbery between them which they do not deny it but rather be proud of it.
They see themselves as unique masterpieces. Complicated rather than complex personalities, they will find it difficult to empathize with other people.
They can't actually go out of the margins of their own personality, not understanding how people don't think the same as they do. That's why many times you may have the feeling of talking to a blank wall because no matter how deep you explain your point of view, most likely a narcissist will not understand.
They often can't maintain long relationships, because they lack empathy and most times people around them give up on explaining themselves over and over again.
Narcissists tend to transform their partners in beggars - you will beg for understanding and some unconditional attention but most of the time you will celebrate only leftovers from the feast in which the narcissist has indulged.
Narcissists expect and demand that the ones nearest and dearest to them, love, admire, tolerate, and cater to their needs. They expect others to be at their immediate disposal.
How To Deal With Narcissistic People - Know The Signs.
Here are 7 of the common signs of narcissism.
2. Your partner will often show a willingness to exploit other people. You may see that your partner has little qualms about stepping on other people if it benefits him / her.
3. Idealized thinking is often a prevalent theme. Your partner might put others, including you, on a pedestal, only to completely discard or describe you as worthless later on down the track. He / she often fantasizes about the perfect love, beauty, or power, and feels he / she has a right to it.
4. Having a grandiose sense of self worth is very common. Your partner might exaggerate his / her accomplishments and expect to associate with other 'high level' people. This often leads to feelings of superiority, a haughty attitude and /or excessive expectations.
5. Your partner will often exhibit an excessive sense of entitlement. He / she may feel as if preferential treatment ought to come her / his way as of right.
6. Your partner will most often crave admiration and praise to the point that it becomes almost like a drug. This drug has been termed 'narcissistic supply' and a narcissist most often goes to excessive lengths to obtain it.
7. He / she may often be very jealous of the accomplishments of others, and even become angry at the successes of others who then take the focus away from her / him.
Narcissistic Relationships bring with them huge risks to the partner of the narcissist because their behavior is a manifestation of an excessive ego and self absorption at the cost of everyone around them. Over the years, if this behavior doesn't change, it generally results in a codependent, emotionally draining and abusive relationship.
Narcissistic Relationships will require lots of energy and work, because narcissists are in constant need for outside support and approval. Once these needs are fulfilled they feel powerful, but many times this need will be very hard to be satisfied and the self image and the peace of the partner may be dramatically impacted.
Narcissistic Relationships test the mental limits of their partners patience, and individuals in a relationship with a narcissist feel something is not 'quite right', feel a lack of emotional connection and most eventually realize it's wise to seek answers to the unsettling experience of their day to day contact with a narcissist.
However, it's important for you to know that you do not have to be the victim of narcissism forever. You don't have to lose your confidence, self image, hope and passion for life because you are in a relationship with a narcissist. You can learn the skills to move beyond the downside effects of your narcissistic relationship and move on to a more normal relationship.
How To Deal With Narcissistic People - Learn How To Protect Yourself
Then do whatever you have to do in order to protect yourself from being a victim of this person and their insanity.
Read as much as you can. Educate yourself. It's important to learn how to deal with narcissistic people! Then take the steps necessary to protect yourself and your children (if they are affected).
Sometimes this means getting away from these people all together, and sometimes you can have milder but distant contact.
The most important thing to remember in dealing with these people is that it is them who has the problem, not you.
Narcissistic Relationships Can Be Improved.
(But it will take detailed knowledge and considerable effort.)
Don't give in to their never-ending demands, keep your independence from this type of person - if in any way you depend on them, they will blackmail you to make you give in to their desires.
Don't let yourself be infuriated by their lack of empathy or understanding - they are not capable of it. Showing them their incapacity will do nothing - they will blame you for everything that it doesn't work.
Narcissists will be attached to those that satisfy their needs but will never treat them as partners but as followers. They have the need to lead and be in control constantly - they do not need equals but disciples or pleasers. The worst thing that can happen is when one narcissist meets someone with low self-esteem - it will be the perfect victim and toy for them.
Finally, you need to decide when enough is enough. A relationship with a narcissist can take you places where you do not want to be, can make you behave in ways you do not recognize yourself . It can undermine your self esteem and will rob you of the attention you need to give to yourself trying to meet all their needs.
Coping with a Narcissistic Partner or SpouseDon’t worry, you’re not alone. Nearly everyone has someone in their personal life who could be described as “stuck on themselves”—and for some of us, that may be our partner or spouse. Learning how to cope with this type of personality is key in developing a strong, lasting relationship. In this guide we’ll look at the types of narcissistic partners and how to handle them.
In relationships where one partner is primarily self-absorbed, the scales are always tipped in the same direction. The narcissistic spouse assumes they are the focal point of the marriage and the family. They hate it when their husband or wife is unavailable to them, even if they are drawn away by the needs of other family members or the demands of work.
People wed to a narcissist can choose one of several paths. The first is to simply give in and assume that you will spend your life being the gardener, while your spouse gets to be the prized, much-tended flower. The second is to end the marriage, either by leaving or by refusing to feed your spouse’s ego so that, in the end, they will be driven to find another partner.
But many people would prefer to keep the marriage intact but still attempt to address some of its imbalances. If that sounds like your situation, try giving your partner what they want to get at least some of what you want.
- Convince your spouse that giving you what you want will reflect well on them. Remember, narcissists are very concerned with outward appearances. They might well be happy to play the role of good spouse if they believe it will earn them the high opinion of others.
- Always apply flattery before suggesting something your spouse can do for you. When a narcissist’s ego is full, they are apt to feel generous.
- Use positive reinforcement. When your spouse supports you in some way or does anything that is unselfish, reinforce that behavior with praise so that they will want to do it again.
- Check in often. Your spouse will be far more tolerant of you doing things on your own if you periodically touch base to remind them that you love them.
- Flirt. This is good advice in any marriage, as it’s always a good idea to keep an element of fun and mystery alive. But narcissists actually crave this kind of sexual attention, and giving it to them will make them less likely to seek it elsewhere.
When your spouse has a grievance, don’t dismiss it. Even if they are being petulant, engage in active listening. Remember to use echoing (paraphrase what they say to show you understand) and mirroring (let them know you are familiar with the feelings they are having).
From The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Coping with Difficult People by Arlene Matthews Uhl
How to Live With a Narcissist
Some narcissists are obviously obnoxious, offensive and obstinate. Others, however, present as attractive, appealing, easy-going people. It’s not until a direct confrontation occurs that their narcissism becomes obvious.Summon up the courage to tell him (or her) that he’s self-centered and he’ll either continue doing whatever he was doing as if you hadn’t said anything at all or he will become irate. “Me? Me? Self-centered? How do you think that makes ME feel?”
Though all narcissists are not cut from the same cloth, they do have quite a few traits in common. Here are a few:
- Narcissists find it hard (if not impossible) to truly appreciate the validity of another's point of view. They act as though others think and feel the same way they do. And if they don’t, something's wrong with them.
- Narcissists need constant validation from the outside. Admire and respect them and they do fine. Find fault with them and watch out! Grandiose narcissists will strike back venomously; closet narcissists will shrink back into their cave.
- Narcissists often display a façade self based on impressive and admirable traits. What’s wrong with that? Nothing, if it weren’t mere window dressing. Their façade self is fake, covering up a real self that's insecure and vulnerable.
- Narcissists view others as extensions of themselves. They set the standards of behavior and don’t tolerate opposition – especially if another’s viewpoint requires him to act in a way she doesn’t want to.
- Narcissists believe that they’re entitled to special treatment. Whether it’s a “stupid” law, or a “dumb” demand, narcissists feel that they shouldn’t have to go along with the pack and conform. They believe they are of higher status; therefore why adapt just to please another.
- Narcissists use money to help them feel special. Status items such as expensive clothes, cars, homes, dinners and trips are essential ways that a narcissist enhances his ego. Spending money, if you have it, is one thing; spending money, if you don’t have it, is quite another. Regardless, a narcissist believes that he deserves the best. And easily fools himself into believing that the money will be there in the future, even if it’s not there right now.
- Narcissists may make a show of generosity by being big tippers or picking up the bill. Look closely, however, and you’ll notice that generally such generosity is based upon establishing a reputation for themselves as a VIP.
It may seem strange to say “discover” that you’re living with a narcissist, but it’s true. Many people don’t realize that their partner (or parent or adult child) is a narcissist, discovering it only after much time has elapsed. Why isn't it obvious at the very beginning?
- Narcissists are great masters of disguise, describing their behavior in the best of terms, (i.e. I’m only doing it for you!) Hence, it may take awhile for you to ‘get’ what’s really going on.
- Though narcissism has a bad rep (egocentric, egotistical), narcissists also have positive traits. Indeed, they may be quite charismatic and charming. Hence, it may be hard to believe that narcissism is driving their behavior.
- Know What You Will Tolerate and What you Won’t
Trust your own judgment. If he (or she) is spending recklessly, know what’s ok with you and what isn’t. That doesn’t mean that all spending has to be done your way (unless you’re 2 narcissists battling it out). But it does mean that you don’t tolerate the narcissist’s explanation for free-spending (i.e. Hey, you only live once.”) And you take necessary steps to protect your financial future.
- Bolster Your Own Self-Esteem
Don’t expect your narcissist to build up your self-esteem when he has just helped tear it down. That is something you must do for yourself. Spend more time with people who think well of you. Get involved with pleasurable activities that bolster your ego. Be kind to yourself.
- Know When You’re Being ‘Gaslighted’.
When your narcissist says something, then later denies saying it or claims to have said something different, you can begin to doubt your own sanity. Were you listening? Were you dreaming? Is she nuts? Am I nuts? What’s going on here? Your narcissist may be doing this maliciously to gain the advantage. Or, she may be simply responding to her need of the moment, forgetting what she previously said.
- Develop a Positive Support System
If you've been covering for your narcissist, you may feel embarrassed to let people know what’s going on. Nevertheless, see if there’s a trustworthy friend or family member with whom you can share your feelings and fears. Also, consider seeking the help of a professional who will be able to offer you support and objective feedback.
- Don’t Tolerate Denigrating Emotional Outbursts
At times your narcissist will be upset and need to let off steam. But “how” one lets off steam is significant. If you're being treated with disdain and disrespect, stop the action. Make the immediate issue HOW you’re being treated. Express your outrage. Demand an apology. And if necessary, walk away, letting it be known that you’ll be happy to pick up where you left off when you’re treated with respect.
- Learn the Skills of Negotiation
Just because your narcissist wants something, doesn’t mean she needs to get it. Just because she expresses herself forcefully, doesn’t mean you fold. Everything is negotiable. You just need to know where your power lies. Then you need to convey it and enforce it. The skills of negotiation will empower you in many areas of life – in the present and in the future.
- Accept that you’re not going to do a total makeover of your narcissist’s personality.
Nor should you want to. If the relationship is that bad, consider ending it. If it’s not, see if you can work together to create rules of acceptable behavior.
Linda Sapadin, Ph.D. is a psychologist and success coach. She specializes in helping people enrich their lives, enhance their relationships and overcome self-defeating patterns. Contact her at email@example.com or visit her website at www.PsychWisdom.com.
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