As the term suggests, narcissism belongs to Greek mythology, in which the young Narcissus fell in love with his own image, reflected in a pool of water. Narcissism can be referred to as excessive admiration of one’s own characteristics and attributes or the attribute of being exceptionally cocky. The American Psychiatric Association has listed the classification of narcissistic personality disorder in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders ( DSM ) since 1968.
Symptoms of NPD include a sumptuous sense of self-importance and self-absorption, need of constant laudation and appreciation, exploitation of others without feeling rueful or guilty, along with frequently being scornfully jocular or an intimidator.
Narcissism has become a pretty common word nowadays, being thrown around quite a bit. Self-centeredness or vanity simply trivializes the symptoms and characteristics of those who are actually gripped by this disorder, due to it being a pretty common feature of almost every human being nowadays.
Romantic relationships of narcissists are most affected due to the disorder and its symptoms, being lack of empathy and other issues. They tend to wheedle their romantic partners through extremely manipulative ways.
It’s easy to miss the red flags when you love someone wholeheartedly. As your grip starts loosening on your relationship and problems start creeping up, you tend to ignore all the negative signs, springing up against your narcissist partner and before you know, you find yourself in a ‘not-so-sought-after’ relationship. At this point, you start comprehending the solemnness of the situation.
If you notice your partner doing these particularly devious things, he/she may be manipulating you to keep you around.
The technique of changing the course of emphasization of abuse from themselves to their partners is called Gaslighting. Narcissists use it by persuading their partner about the inaccuracy of their perception of the abuse and exploitation.
Throwing the blame on you as the reason of their own abuse, saying that you have irregular issues, you are hypersensitive and too impressionable, you become too cranky etc; will start seeming very normal to you after some time.
They’re masters at making you feel dubious and skeptical about yourself, so do NOT fall into their trap- never feel diffident, raise your head high and understand that this ‘one-way’ relationship needs to end soon.
2. When you stand up for yourself, you suddenly become their everything.
The moment you raise your head and stand up for yourself, your narcissist partner will immediately turn himself into your puppet. You suddenly become his sun, moon, stars, his ‘everything’. They start giving you reasons for them, not being able to live without you. However, history starts repeating itself soon after you decide to stay. NOTHING changes.
Many people become the victim over and over again, hoping this time to be better, but that’s never if rarely, the case.
3. Smear Campaigns
Narcissists are chameleons-cum-pleasers, who change their colour according to the situation, to get their wants and needs.
Do not get befuddled by them who seem to transmogrify suddenly into different personalities in different situations. This is a danger sign – a sign of lack of authenticity and trustworthiness with you and others.
Unsurprisingly, a smear campaign will be started against you by the narcissist in which, instead of him, YOU will be smeared as the unstable and abusive one. This campaign is used to accomplish two requirements of the narcissist:-
- A) to depict you as the abuser
- B) to provoke you into a response, hence proving your irateness and abusiveness, when you are trying to argue his/her depiction of you.
Narcissists think of themselves as people born to generate love triangles- it’s a NEED for them. They do this to such an extent that you become their pawn. Triangulation is a process of bringing another person into their so-called well-going relationship, be it an ex-lover, a current mistress or a complete stranger.
Jealousy, considered as a malevolent weapon, is often used by the narcissist to tear through your heart and soul and make you want to compete for his doting nature.
So, provocative statements like “I don’t understand why you are not like her” or “I think our relationship isn’t even near the way I used to have with him.” are said to throw the victim into a pit of insecurity, where he dies, slowly and bluntly.
Triangulation is a way of maintaining control by the narcissist- you get so busy in trying to rise out of the pit of insecurity, that the red flags, a reminder of your mistake of getting into this relationship, get hazed by the clouds, causing you to get nonplussed and delay looking for ways out of the relationship.
See, narcissists don’t really feel empathy and magnanimity towards others. So, when they kick you out of their lives ( which they eventually do ), they remain completely deadpan- feeling nothing for you. You were just another source of narcissistic supply for him/her, so do not torment yourself into thinking, that the so-called magical connection existing between you both in the beginning, was real. It WASN’T.
It is high time now. Pick up the broken pieces of your heart, stick them together, go No Contact- heal. Bring on some positivity- you were not only a victim of narcissistic abuse, but a survivor too. Live your life and dreams the way you deserve- enjoy, respect, love