Covert narcissism is a less obvious form of narcissism than what most people think of when they hear the term ‘narcissist.’ A covert narcissist does not exhibit traditional signs of narcissism like overtly displaying an inflated ego or openly craving admiration. Instead, their narcissism is more subtle, which makes it potentially more dangerous because it can be hard for both the individual and those around them to recognize. In this article, we will delve into the hidden world of a covert narcissist woman and what you need to know about her.
Understanding Covert Narcissism
Covert narcissism, also known as quiet or closet narcissism, manifests as a lack of confidence, hypersensitivity to criticism, and a constant need for reassurance.
Unlike their overt counterparts, covert narcissists don’t initially appear to believe they are better than everyone else. They come across as shy, introverted, or sensitive.
However, beneath this seemingly humble exterior lies a strong sense of entitlement and a disregard for other people’s feelings.
They may feel neglected or overlooked and harbor a deep resentment towards those they perceive as more successful or popular.
They often play the victim and use guilt as a weapon to manipulate others.
Recognizing the Signs of a Covert Narcissist Woman
Recognizing a covert narcissist woman can be challenging, as she may initially come off as vulnerable and insecure. The subtlety of her narcissism, coupled with her innate ability to manipulate situations, can make it difficult to discern her true nature.
However, there are certain traits that can act as red flags. Let’s delve deeper into these signs:
Passive-Aggression: The Understated Arsenal of a Covert Narcissist Woman
A hallmark of covert narcissism in women is the subtle yet pervasive use of passive-aggressiveness. This trait sets them apart from their overt counterparts, who are more likely to exhibit direct and open aggression.
Passive-aggressiveness in a covert narcissist woman manifests itself in various ways, often so deviously that it can be easily overlooked or misinterpreted.
She will deliver backhanded compliments that seem harmless at first glance but carry an undercurrent of criticism or negativity.
For instance, she could compliment a colleague’s promotion, but hint at it being more about luck than merit, thereby undermining the achievement.
Another manifestation of passive-aggressiveness is the silent treatment.
Instead of expressing her dissatisfaction or hurt openly, a covert narcissist woman will often resort to silence as a form of punishment.
By withholding communication, she places the other person in a state of unease and uncertainty, subtly exerting control over them without uttering a word.
Subtle sabotage is yet another weapon in the covert narcissist woman’s arsenal.
She might deviously undermine your efforts or achievements, especially if she perceives them as a threat to her self-esteem or superiority.
For example, she will downplay your successes, belittle your ideas, or even interfere in your work or personal life.
What makes these behaviors particularly draining for those on the receiving end is their maliciousness.
The covert nature of these actions can make it hard to pinpoint the source of the tension, leaving one feeling confused, frustrated, and emotionally exhausted.
It’s like a psychological fog that keeps you off-balance and uncertain, which is exactly where the covert narcissist woman wants you.
Victim Mentality: The Emotional Labyrinth of a Covert Narcissist Woman
A defining characteristic of a covert narcissist woman is her tendency to adopt a victim mentality. This is a crucial part of her emotional strategy, serving as a manipulative tool to gain attention, sympathy, and advantage from others.
The victim mentality of a covert narcissist woman is an intricate web of self-deception and manipulation.
She isn’t just playing the victim. She genuinely believes that she’s being victimized on a level that others can’t comprehend. This sense of unique struggle underpins her interactions and becomes a recurring theme in her narrative.
She might, for instance, portray a minor disagreement with a friend as a significant betrayal, amplifying the incident to paint herself as the aggrieved party.
Her recounting of the event will be skewed to evoke sympathy and rally support for her cause, in the process isolating the other person.
Similarly, a covert narcissist woman will frequently complain about how hard she works and the lack of recognition she receives.
She will lament the long hours she puts in, the sacrifices she makes, and how her efforts go unnoticed or unappreciated.
This narrative serves a dual purpose. It allows her to garner sympathy and admiration for her ‘struggles’, and it subtly undermines others by implying that they don’t work as hard or sacrifice as much.
This perpetual state of victimhood is a potent weapon in the covert narcissist woman’s arsenal.
It allows her to manipulate others into catering to her needs and desires, all the while maintaining an aura of innocence and vulnerability.
It also provides her with an excuse to avoid taking responsibility for her actions since, in her mind, she’s always the victim, never the perpetrator.
Lack of Empathy: The Hidden Deficiency of a Covert Narcissist Woman
While empathy is the cornerstone of meaningful and deep human connections, it’s often glaringly absent in the interactions of a covert narcissist woman.
This lack of empathy, however, is not always evident.
A covert narcissist woman will initially come across as empathetic and understanding, but this façade crumbles when it no longer serves her interests.
The lack of genuine empathy in a covert narcissist woman is a complex puzzle.
On one hand, she is remarkably skilled at mimicking empathetic responses when it suits her.
She might express sympathy or concern when someone shares a distressing experience, creating an illusion of understanding and compassion.
However, this display of empathy often lacks depth and is short-lived.
For instance, she might comfort a friend going through a tough time, offering kind words and seemingly empathetic responses.
But once the conversation shifts away from her or no longer feeds her need for attention, her interest dwindles rapidly.
Her lack of genuine concern becomes apparent, leaving the other person feeling unheard and invalidated.
Another manifestation of her lack of empathy is her inability to share in the joy or success of others in a genuine manner.
A covert narcissist woman will downplay or ignore your achievements, especially if they overshadow hers or do not involve her.
She is unable to relate to your happiness because her emotional landscape is centered around her experiences and feelings, to the exclusion of all else.
Manipulative Behavior: The Stealthy Power Plays of a Covert Narcissist Woman
Manipulative behavior serves as the bedrock of a covert narcissist woman’s social interactions, enabling her to maintain control and ensure that things always sway in her favor.
She never hesitates to employ tactics such as guilt, shame, or fear to manipulate others, skillfully disguising these maneuvers within everyday conversations and actions.
A covert narcissist woman’s manipulation is often so subtle and nuanced that it can easily slip under the radar.
For example, she will guilt-trip a friend into canceling plans with others to spend time exclusively with her.
By subtly implying that the friend is neglecting her, she manipulates them into doing what she wants, all while maintaining an innocent façade.
Fear is another weapon in her manipulation arsenal.
She might create a narrative where her partner feels constantly on edge, subtly suggesting that they are fortunate to be with her and could not find anyone better.
This tactic keeps the partner in a constant state of insecurity and gratitude, making it easier for her to control the dynamics of the relationship.
She may also use shame as a manipulative tool, belittling or criticizing others to make them feel inadequate or unworthy.
By undermining their self-esteem, she can exert control over them and influence their actions and decisions.
These manipulative behaviors can result in an unhealthy power imbalance in relationships, with the covert narcissist woman firmly holding the reins.
Those subjected to her manipulation often end up feeling undervalued, controlled, and emotionally exhausted, unable to pinpoint the root cause due to the subtlety of her tactics.
Navigating a Relationship with a Covert Narcissist Woman
Being in a relationship with a covert narcissist woman can be challenging, given her manipulative tactics and lack of genuine empathy.
However, with clear boundaries, self-care, and external support, it’s possible to navigate these murky waters.
Here are some strategies to consider:
Set Clear Boundaries
One of the most crucial steps in interacting with a covert narcissist woman is setting clear boundaries.
She may attempt to manipulate or guilt-trip you into bending these boundaries, but it’s essential to stay firm.
Create explicit limits for what behavior you will accept and what you won’t.
If she tries to violate these boundaries, reinforce them calmly but assertively.
It’s crucial to prioritize your mental health and emotional stability over her potential reactions.
In a relationship with a covert narcissist woman, self-care should be a priority.
This includes physical health, mental well-being, and emotional strength.
Engage in activities that nourish your soul and bring you joy.
Exercise regularly, maintain a balanced diet, practice mindfulness, and indulge in hobbies or pastimes that you love.
Remember, it’s okay to put yourself first.
You are not responsible for managing her emotions or catering to her every whim.
Your happiness and peace of mind should not be compromised for the sake of maintaining harmony in the relationship.
Seek External Support
Another effective strategy is seeking support from trusted friends, family members, or mental health professionals. These people can offer valuable advice, perspective, and emotional support, helping you navigate the complexities of your relationship.
Talking to a therapist can also be very helpful. They will provide you with tools and strategies to handle the emotional stress and manipulation often associated with a covert narcissist woman.
Concluding Thoughts on Dealing with Covert Narcissists
Unraveling the intricate secrets of a covert narcissist woman presents a formidable challenge, given the subtlety, complexity, and often deceptive nature of this form of narcissism.
The nuanced behaviors, manipulative tactics, and lack of genuine empathy can be difficult to decipher and even more challenging to cope with.
However, by educating yourself about this personality type, recognizing the signs, and understanding her manipulation tactics, you can equip yourself with the knowledge necessary to navigate these relationships more effectively.
While it may be a complex journey, with the right tools and mindset, you can maintain your emotional health and ensure your interactions are as healthy and balanced as possible.
Posts about Covert Narcissists
Carla Corelli, a writer, advocate, and survivor of narcissistic abuse, draws from her own upbringing with a narcissistic father to shed light on psychological trauma. Fueled by her personal journey, she pursued a degree in psychology and has dedicated herself to shedding light on the complexities of narcissistic abuse.
With over fifteen years of experience in writing and advocating for survivors, Carla is deeply committed to providing support, education, and empowerment to those who have endured similar trauma. Through her articles, Carla aims to offer a compassionate space for healing and growth, while advocating for greater awareness and understanding of narcissistic abuse.
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