Dating can be difficult enough as it is, but when you’re dating a narcissist, it can be downright dangerous.
Narcissists are masters of manipulation, and they will do everything in their power to get what they want.
They often have an air of superiority about them that can make them very attractive at first glance. But there is a dark side to narcissism that few people see until it’s too late.
In this blog post, I will discuss the warning signs of narcissistic behaviour so that you can protect yourself from harm.
The charming narcissist
Narcissists are often extremely charming and charismatic. They may seem like the perfect partner at first, sharing your same hobbies and caring for the same things that you do.
However, this is just an act. They are taking cues from your behaviour and wearing the mask that they believe best suited to reel you in, using a tactic called mirroring.
Warning signs that you may be dating a narcissist
If you’re dating someone who is almost too good to be true, beware of the following warning signs:
Narcissists are extremely self-centred. They talk about themselves incessantly and expect you to do the same. This is because they lack empathy. They do not really care about how you feel or what you need. They are only be interested in how you can benefit them.
Nobody is ever good enough for a narcissist. They are usually very critical of others, and will often belittle and demean people in order to make themselves feel superior. However do not ever try to criticise them, because they have a notoriously fragile ego and can get very aggressive if they feel that anyone is not showering them with the adoration they believe they deserve.
In fact, narcissists have a need for constant validation and attention. They may fish for compliments and get moody if your praise is not sufficiently cloying.
Narcissists are also very entitled. They will expect you to cater to their every need and may become enraged if you don’t.
Narcissists can be very controlling. They may try to control your behaviour or tell you what to do, and also try to control your relationships with other people. They will have no problem spying on your phone messages or emails.
Narcissists are frequently dishonest and manipulative. They may lie about their past, their accomplishments, or their feelings in order to get what they want.
Narcissists can be very emotionally abusive. They may use your fears against you or manipulate you into doing things you don’t want to do. They may also try to gaslight you into doubting your own reality.
Don’t get caught in the narcissistic abuse cycle
In addition to the red flags above, it is also important to be aware of the stages of the narcissistic abuse cycle, since this is the clearest indication that you have had the misfortune of getting involved with a narcissist.
When you are dating a narcissist, the cycle of abuse goes something like this:
First, the narcissist will idealize you. They will love bomb you and make you feel like you are the most special person in their life.
Then, they will devalue you. They may start to criticize you or find fault with everything you do. They may also withdraw their affection or start to ignore you.
The cycle will then start all over again with another victim. After a while, however, the narcissist will get fed up of the new source of supply, and the chances are that they will give you a call to see if they can ensnare you once more.
If you fall for it, the cycle will begin anew.
If you’re dating a narcissist, it’s important to protect yourself from their manipulative behaviour. The relationship is likely to be very one-sided. You may find yourself constantly giving and never receiving. You may also start to feel like you’re walking on eggshells, never quite sure what will set them off.
Be on the lookout for the warning signs listed above, and if you think you might be dating a narcissist, protect yourself before it’s too late. The best thing you can do is get out while you still can. No matter how much they may try to convince you otherwise, they will never change. The best thing you can do is protect yourself from further harm and find someone who will love and respect you for who you are.