When you stop chasing a narcissist, they are likely to react with intense anger or what is commonly referred to as “narcissistic rage.” This volatile response stems from their deep-rooted need for constant admiration and control. The sudden withdrawal of attention threatens their self-perceived superiority and triggers feelings of inadequacy.
The Loss of Narcissistic Supply
When trying to predict how a narcissist will react when you stop chasing them, you must first understand the concept of narcissistic supply.
Narcissistic supply refers to the attention, admiration, and validation that the narcissist seeks to fuel their ego and maintain their inflated self-image.
When you actively chase a narcissist, you provide them with the supply they crave.
Your constant attention, adoration, and validation serve as fuel to feed their sense of superiority and grandiosity.
Without this external validation, narcissists struggle to maintain their fragile self-esteem.
Therefore, when you stop chasing a narcissist, you withhold the essential supply they need to sustain their inflated self-image.
This loss of attention and validation deeply impacts their self-worth and triggers feelings of insecurity and inadequacy.
Unable to obtain their usual dose of narcissistic supply, the narcissist may react in various ways.
They may become enraged or aggressive, seeking to regain control over you and restore their sense of power.
Additionally, they may experience confusion and hurt, not understanding why you have chosen to withdraw your devotion.
The loss of narcissistic supply can be devastating for a narcissist, as it exposes their deep-seated fear of being insignificant.
It challenges their belief in their exceptionalism and forces them to confront the reality that they are not as special or superior as they perceive themselves to be.
In response to this loss, narcissists will attempt to manipulate you into resuming the chase.
They may initially use tactics such as love bombing or hoovering, where they shower you with affection and compliments to entice you back into their web.
If that does not work, they could resort to aggression to try to bully you, in the process getting supply from your upset reaction.
Attempts at Reconciliation
Recognizing these manipulation tactics can help you maintain your boundaries and make informed choices that prioritize your well-being.
When You Stop Chasing a Narcissist they will React with Love Bombing
Love bombing is a manipulative tactic frequently employed by narcissists in their attempts to win you back. It involves showering you with excessive affection, compliments, and expressions of love.
The narcissist will go to great lengths to make you feel desired and special, as they try to recreate the initial infatuation stage of the relationship.
During this phase, the narcissist will inundate you with grand gestures, gifts, and seemingly genuine acts of kindness.
Love bombing aims to overwhelm you emotionally, making it difficult to resist their advances.
When You Stop Chasing a Narcissist they will React with Hoovering
Hoovering is a term often used to describe the narcissist’s attempts to “suck” you back into their lives after you have withdrawn your attention and validation. Just like a vacuum cleaner, they will attempt to pull you back into their dysfunctional dynamic.
Hoovering can take various forms, depending on the individual narcissist and the nature of your relationship.
One common manifestation of hoovering is contacting you out of the blue, sometimes after a prolonged period of silence or no contact.
The narcissist may send messages or reach out to you, seemingly concerned about your well-being or wanting to reconnect.
They will employ tactics such as nostalgia, reminding you of the positive moments in your past relationship, or triggering feelings of guilt and obligation.
When You Stop Chasing a Narcissist they will React with Future Faking
Another tactic employed by narcissists is future faking. This involves the narcissist making promises and commitments about a better future together, often using the allure of a shared vision or goal to entice you back into their web.
They may discuss plans for a future life together, career advancements, trips, or even marriage and children.
Future faking taps into your hopes and desires, exploiting your vulnerability and longing for a meaningful, secure relationship. The narcissist uses these promises as a means to regain your trust and investment in the relationship.
Devaluation and Ego Protection
If the abovementioned manipulative tactics prove futile, the narcissist is likely to escalate their efforts, employing more aggressive strategies to try and coerce you into resuming your role as their source of validation and admiration.
When You Stop Chasing a Narcissist they will React with Insults and Verbal Abuse
As the narcissist escalates their efforts to lure you back into their toxic web, it is possible that they will resort to tactics such as insults and verbal abuse.
They could criticize your appearance, intelligence, or abilities in an attempt to make you feel inferior and themselves superior.
Their remarks can be overtly hurtful or subtly demeaning, but the end goal is always the same: to lower your self-esteem and make you more susceptible to their manipulation.
The narcissist uses these put-downs as a form of psychological warfare, aiming to instill doubt in your self-worth and make you feel dependent on their approval.
In doing so, they hope to coerce you into seeking their validation again, thus reinstating their narcissistic supply.
When You Stop Chasing a Narcissist they will React with Gaslighting
Gaslighting involves the narcissist manipulating your perception of reality, leading you to question your thoughts, feelings, and experiences.
By creating confusion and doubt, the narcissist aims to undermine your confidence and autonomy, making you more likely to rely on them for validation and truth.
Gaslighting can take various forms, from outright denial of events to subtle shifts in narrative that favor the narcissist.
The ultimate goal is to destabilize your sense of reality and make you feel uncertain and insecure, thereby increasing your vulnerability to their manipulations.
When You Stop Chasing a Narcissist they will React with Abuse by Proxy and Unleashing “Flying Monkeys”
When the narcissist’s attempts at manipulation and devaluation fail to draw you back into their web, they may resort to a tactic known as abuse by proxy.
One way narcissists execute abuse by proxy is by unleashing what are colloquially known as “flying monkeys.”
The term, derived from the minions of the Wicked Witch in “The Wizard of Oz,” refers to individuals who are manipulated by the narcissist into carrying out their bidding.
These flying monkeys can be mutual friends, family members, or even professional contacts who the narcissist convinces to side with them against you.
The flying monkeys will then act on behalf of the narcissist, perpetuating the narcissist’s abuse towards you indirectly.
This can manifest as these individuals attacking your character, questioning your actions, or trying to convince you to reconcile with the narcissist.
The aim is to isolate you, damage your other relationships, and increase your vulnerability, thereby making you more susceptible to the narcissist’s control.
When You Stop Chasing a Narcissist they will React Aggressively
If all else fails in coercing you to resume your role as a source of narcissistic supply, the narcissist may resort to even more aggressive strategies.
This could involve threats, intimidation, or even physical aggression in extreme cases, all in an attempt to regain control and re-establish their source of narcissistic validation.
The objective is to instill fear and uncertainty, making you more vulnerable to their manipulative tactics and coercing you back into the role of their admirer.
It’s crucial to prioritize your safety in these instances, seeking help from authorities or support networks as necessary.
When you stop chasing a narcissist, they are like to react with intense anger, attempts at reconciliation and in some cases, aggression, in their bid to re-establish their source of narcissistic validation.
In navigating this challenging terrain, it’s paramount to recognize these manipulative strategies for what they truly are: desperate attempts to regain control. Your safety, both physical and emotional, should always be your priority.
Ensuring that you have a supportive network and professional help if needed can make all the difference. Remember, you have the strength to resist manipulation and reclaim your autonomy.
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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