Are you dating a narcissist? If so, this one’s for you babe!
Narcissism is a real thing and for those of you who don't know, it's a legit classified mental health diagnosis. Dating a narcissist can take its toll as it requires constant giving via endless validation and listening of your partners grandiose sense of self. This blog covers some legit realities for the individual whose in a relationship with such a personality type.
What is Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD)?
In a nutshell, an individual that fits the diagnosis for Narcissistic Personality Disorder generally has a grandiose view of themself, a burning desire for admiration, and a lack of empathy for others. To get further into clinical diagnostic criteria, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) published by the American Psychiatric Association, here are key characteristics of NPD:
Having an exaggerated sense of self-importance
Expecting to be recognized as superior even without achievements that warrant it
Exaggerating achievements and talents
Being preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty, or the perfect mate
Believing that you are superior and can only be understood by or associate with equally special people
Requiring constant admiration
Having a sense of entitlement
Expecting special favors and unquestioning compliance with your expectations
Taking advantage of others to get what you want
Having an inability or unwillingness to recognize the needs and feelings of others
Being envious of others and believing others envy you
Behaving in an arrogant or haughty manner
5 Signs That You’re Dating A Narcissist
1. Since your partner has an inflated sense of self, you find yourself spending countless hours having one sided “conversations” as you listen to the exaggerated triumphs and tribulations of your partners life journey.
2. A narcissist thrives from a deep need of admiration from others, hence, you find yourself in the role of “cheerleader” by giving compliments and praise because that’s the fuel your lover needs to keep their exaggerated sense of self up to par.
3. A narcissist lacks the ability to be empathic to the needs of others, so even though you're the, so called “object of his/her affection,” you find your needs ignored and unacknowledged.
4. Your sense of self is slowly going down the drain. Over time, the constant “about me” vibe that a narcissistic partner brings to a relationship will begin to dim your inner light. This is the where the real damage is done. This will leave you feeling inwardly empty and doubtful as that’s what happens when your sense of self is compromised.
5. You feel taken advantage of and defeated, although it’s confusing because your love for your partner causes you to validate their self serving actions. An intimate partner of a narcissist usually begins to play a subservient role that, unfortunately, will begin to feel “normal” overtime. This role is developed in order to stay in the partnership. We tend to make excuses and get in a strong habit of validating our partners ways of being that, in all reality, are self serving and geared to their best interest, not ours.
It’s always very apparent when a client comes in that’s with or has recently ended an intimate relationship with a narcissist. Usually, the first step in helping this individual is to provide a realistic view of reality for it ‘s become very distorted as a result of being on the other end of someone who has a grandiose, self serving and all consuming sense of self. As a therapist experiencing and helping this type of client, it feels as if your across someone whose been “brainwashed.” Often, their view of reality has been tainted by the material they’ve been witnessing and digesting from their narcissistic partner. My job is to help them rebuild their sense of reality based on facts, rather than the stories that they were encouraged to believe from their partner.
As the term “narcissist” is thrown around very loosely in our society, I truly have seen the scaring effects that this type of partnership has had on my clients. It’s real. It’s damaging and the time it takes to recorrect and restore a persons sense of self takes courage, time and work.
So, babes, to avoid going down this road, make sure that you’re considering yourself, your needs, your wants, ALWAYS, AND especially when you’re choosing a mate. Anybody who continually makes you feel doubtful of yourself, is never asking about you and is always out for number one is simply not a good partner for you. Period.
The charm and rico suave vibe is there with these narcissistic individuals, so don’t let the charm fool you. Go deeper. Choose well. Give your time and energy to someone who sees you, rather than someone whose only interested in seeing themself.
*Image by lifestyle & wedding photographer, Amy Lynn Bjornson.