13 Signs You Are Dating a Narcissist – Traits To Watch Out For
Last Updated on February 18, 2023
Recently the word narcissist has become quite common. It is often used to describe a self-absorbed person. While this is one of the characteristic traits of a narcissist. It does not have the same meaning as being in a relationship with someone who has a narcissistic personality disorder.
Being in a narcissistic relationship can be emotionally and even physically damaging. So if you have ever even considered that you might have a narcissistic partner, you must figure it out. The last thing you want to do is be attached to someone who is a narcissist, who does not plan on seeking any help to better themselves. This can be very harmful to your sanity in the long run.
To help you do this we have highlighted some important information about narcissists. Including the signs to look for to help you figure out if you’re in a narcissistic relationship.
What is Narcissistic Personality Disorder?
A narcissistic personality disorder is one of the mental disorders that play a huge part in disrupting a person’s life. Narcissistic people have a grandiose sense of self-importance and a disillusioned sense of reality. People who suffer from narcissistic personality disorder have a belief that they are superior, and only want to connect with high statue people.
This mental health condition is more commonly found in men than women. Narcissistic personality disorder has to be diagnosed by a health professional. The cause of this mental health condition is currently unknown. However, there are some views that a person’s environment and genetics play a role in causing it.
Unfortunately, a narcissistic personality disorder is a lifelong condition and there is no cure for it. However, there are medications and theory can be used to three the symptoms of mental condition.
While there is no cure for this mental health condition, the symptoms can be managed. This may help decrease the negative impact this mental disorder has on people who have this condition. This is why it is so important to be aware of the narcissistic behaviors so the person can receive the treatment that they may need. A few narcissistic traits include:
- Lack of empathy
- Attention seeking
- Arrogant and haughty behaviors
13 Signs You’re Dating a Narcissist
It is terrible for anyone who is suffering from a narcissistic personality disorder. However, this does not mean that it is okay for their partner to experience emotional abuse, or even in the worst cases physical abuse.
Commonly, people have no idea that they have this mental disorder and that there are treatment options available. This may be because some people may have never seen what a healthy relationship looks like. Meaning that they could view their narcissistic relationship as normal.
However, now that you know the common symptoms of narcissistic personality disorder. You maybe be considering if your partner is a narcissist. To help you figure this out here are 13 signs that you should look out for:
1. Charismatic and charming at the beginning of the relationship
At the beginning of the relationship, a narcissistic person will usually be extremely charming and friendly. Narcissists are usually super charismatic and enjoy showing their romantic partner excessive attention, in an attempt to gain adoration.
Then they suddenly stop doing this out of nowhere, and it is done in a very cold manner. As if you did something wrong but nothing has changed. In these cases, you should be cautious. Actions like these are usually done to lure you in and it sometimes ends up giving you a false sense of hope.
Note: if your partner is was extremely charming at the begging of your relationship and remains to do so this does not mean that they are a narcissist or they are not. You will only be able to figure out if you are in a relationship with a narcissist after noticing some of the other signs as well.
2. Love bombing at the beginning of the relationship
Love bombing is similar to when your partner is charming and trying to impress you at the start of the relationship. This is just one of many manipulation tactics used by narcissists. However, when it comes to love bombing this is a much more noticeable sign.
This is because not only will your partner show you excessive attention as well as, an excessive admiration sense. This narcissistic partner will also move extremely fast in the relationship. This will be shocking and something to keep an eye on.
Moving fast usually means your partner will ask you to either move in with them, marry them, or make any serious life changes just as the relationship has begun.
It might be hard to notice at first because it will seem genuine. However, if any new relationship is moving a bit too fast that should be seen as a red flag.
To avoid ending up in an unhealthy relationship with a narcissist. You should immediately tell your partner no if they ask you to make any big lifestyle changes right at the start of the relationship.
The great thing about this is that you can see how your partner reacts to you not giving them what they wanted. If they are completely fine with it then they are probably not narcissistic. On the other hand, if they react negatively you may want to take this as a red flag.
3. Obsessed with their reflection
It is no secret that narcissists are self-centered people this includes them being overly concerned with their appearance. While it is never a bad thing to be love yourself and show yourself the care and appreciation you deserve.
There is, however, a problem if your partner starts to show signs that they are starting to become obsessed with their reflection. By this, we don’t mean just simply looking at themselves occasionally in the mirror but always admiring their reflection. Especially if you are using a mirror and they move you out of the way to view themselves.
You may also notice that your partner has become very covered with what other people think of them. This is usually the case when it comes to high-status people, who they view as equals.
When this happens there is nothing that you can do besides make your partner aware of the way they are acting and hopefully, this could correct their behavior. However, if your partner is a true narcissist then bringing attention to this will probably offend them. Which may make them act a little defensive towards, and even maybe accuse you of the reason that they have’ low self-esteem’.
4. Perceived superiority complex
One of the most noticeable narcissistic traits is their grandiose sense of self-importance. Narcissists tend to talk about their achievements quite a lot and can be quite boastful about them. While this can be viewed as just an annoying characteristic, the problem comes in because they don’t other people speak.
Narcissists will usually interrupt you while you are talking to them, or anyone else just so that they can make sure to be the center of attention. This is because people with narcissistic personality disorder truly believe that they are better than other people. They will even go as far as to find people that they view as being on the same level as them.
If you ever notice your romantic partner trying to speak over you, or completely ignoring you when you speak about your accomplishments. Then this is a sign that they may have narcissistic behaviors.
5. They express empathy envy
Narcissists lack empathy which means they are not affected by how other people’s feelings. This would not be a red flag if this was just the case but narcissistic express empathy envy.
This means that when someone like their romantic partner either expresses empathy to someone else or someone is expressing empathy to them. The narcissist is usually jealous of this behavior. This may be because narcissists just cannot handle it when other people are receiving attention.
So if you are in a relationship with someone who gets quite upset with you. When you are either showing empathy or trying to help someone else. Take this as one of the warning signs you are dating a narcissist.
6. Tries to stop you from spending time with long term friends
A noticeable warning sign of a narcissistic partner, that you may easily pick up on is if they have a problem with if you spend time with your long-term friends. Narcissistic behaviors include possessiveness. Usually narcissistic like to be the only person in your life and they tend to get jealous when you spend time with other people.
Not that this is not bad enough but it gets worse. Narcissistic partners are extremely manipulative and by isolating you away from your friends. This will mean that they will have more chances of controlling you.
Another reason why narcissistic partners may do this is that they need excessive attention and will not like their partners giving attention to anyone else. This is a huge red flag that you will not miss, but remember to keep in mind that it is a sign of narcissism.
7. Expressing arrogant and haughty behaviors
This is a common narcissistic behavior that you will notice if your romantic partner behaves this way. Behaving arrogantly and haughty is just another way for a narcissistic person to express their superiority complex.
When arrogant people behave in this way they can be overbearing and obnoxious to be around. If you ever notice your romantic partner behaving like this it is a warning sign that you just cannot ignore.
8. They do not have many long term friends
Another noticeable warning sign, that you should keep an eye out for. Is if the person you are romantically involved with does have long-term friends around. This will give you a little insight into how long your partner can maintain their friendship.
If your partner does not have any long-term friends but they have lots of new friends. These new friends are usually superficial connections and don’t last long. You should see this as one of the signs you are dating a narcissistic person.
On the other hand, if your romantic partner is still really good friends with their old long-term friends and has a few new friends. You should view this as a positive sign because it shows how much they value long-term friendships.
9. Extremely sensitive and defensive
While narcissistic people are well known to be self-centered people who love looking at themselves. These people also have a superiority complex and feel as if they are much better than other people. Even with all of these ‘positive’ feelings about themselves narcissistic people still have very fragile self-esteem.
Anytime their self-esteem is challenged this could be done intentionally or unintentionally but no matter the circumstances. A narcissistic person will still react extremely sensitively and defensively when challenged.
This is an easy sign to spot, all you have to do is take note of how your partner reacts to comments and situations about them. If you are romantically involved with someone and you make a little criticism about them in a constructive way.
However, they do not view it like this and they get extremely defensive and start criticizing you and trying to tear you down. Usually, this is an indicator that your romantic partner may have a narcissistic personality disorder.
10. They express only a one-sided view of their family members
One of the ways that you can tell if someone is a narcissist is in the way that they speak about their family members. When it comes to how they feel narcissists usually only have a black and white mindset, there is nothing in-between.
What this means is if you ask you’re the person that you are romantically involved with about their family. Then they go ahead and answer but when talking about their family you may notice very one-sided views about certain family members. This can be seen as an indication of narcissism.
The reason for this is because usually when people talk about their families they will give you a wide range of feelings. However, narcissistic people will only share their one-sided views of their family members. This can be seen as a big eye-opener and a factor that you should keep in mind.
11. Constantly belittling you
If your romantic partner is always belittling you and saying rude comments to make you feel bad about yourself. This is should not just be a red flag for a sign of narcissistic traits, but just a person who you probably should not be in a relationship with. After all, intentionally trying to make your partner feel bad is not something that is done in healthy relationships.
Most narcissists will usually make other people feel rage or bad about themselves to feel better about themselves. Narcissistic seem to enjoy having the power of controlling other people’s feelings, and this makes them feel powerful.
People with narcissistic personality disorders will also belittle the people around them if they are feeling threatened. Narcissistic people will do this over the smallest comments that may not even be made to offend them. However, they will react to make the other person feel worse about themselves.
12. You are continuously making excuses for their behavior
You may not notice this at first but if you are constantly having to defend your partner’s behavior and charter from other people. You need to take note of when or if this happens. This is the type of behavior your partner is displaying that you are making excuses for. Are they being rude to strangers for no reason? Are they being rude to your friends?, Are they being rude to you?.
These are signs that you should keep an eye out for. Especially, if you are defending your partner’s behavior towards how he treats you. This should be a major red flag for you to stop and consider if your partner is a narcissist.
Another factor to keep in mind when it comes to defending your partner’s behavior. This is if your friends are calling out your parent’s behavior and you are defending their behavior against your friends. This is especially the case if these are your empathetic friends, who are usually open-minded and understanding.
What to do if You are Dating a Narcissist?
It can be extremely hard if your partner has been diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorders. Probably the last thing you want to do is leave them. Especially if they have only recently been diagnosed. Here are a few options that you can consider to help you figure out what to do in this situation:
Visiting a clinical psychologist or therapist
If you are a part of a narcissistic relationship with a narcissist who is trying their best to better themselves. A good idea would be for your partner to start going to a clinical psychologist. Who will be able to diagnose your partner and maybe treat their disorder with medication.
Psychologists will also help teach your partner how to better manage and communicate their feelings. This could have an impact on how your partner treats you.
If your partner does not feel comfortable going to therapy alone, or you feel that your relationship has been tested and you are unsure what to do. Couples therapy could be the answer that you are looking for. By going to couples therapy together, your partner and yourself can properly discuss and help solve the conflicts in your relationship.
It is a great idea for any couple who is currently in a relationship with a narcissistic partner. This will help resolve past issues and help rebuild the foundation of trust in the relationship.
Visiting a relationship coach
While relationship coaches might sound similar to therapists but their main focus is working with relationships. These coaches aim to teach partners new ways of how to do certain actions in the relationship like communicating, conflict resolution, trusting, being intimate, and more.
Taking a break and coming back
There are times when you may feel like you cannot handle your relationship anymore but you still love your partner. In this case, what you can try to do is take a break from the relationship this can be a few weeks or a month. Allow yourself to heal, grow, and your partner should do the same.
If your partner has started taking any medication to help their symptoms with a narcissistic personality disorder. They may need this time to adjust and get used to the feelings that may come with the medication.
Once you both have had enough time apart and still want to be with each other you can come back when you are ready. This space will be great and help the relationship start in a better way.
Ending the relationship
However, in some cases, the damage done to a narcotics relationship might be too much to fix. While this will be extremely hard to do, sometimes the best decision that you can make for yourself and your partner is to end the relationship.
Tips if you are Recovering From a Narcissistic Relationship
After experiencing a narcissistic relationship you may notice that you don’t feel the way you used to. This is because these relationships can be extremely damaging for oneself. They can cause low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, and more depending on how severe the relationship was.
Here are a few tips to help you manage and recover from this unhealthy relationship:
- Acknowledge your abuse – this can be extremely difficult but it is crucial to acknowledge that you did experience emotional abuse. Once you do this it will make healing and moving on a bit easier.
- Visit a therapist – it is important to talk about what you have experienced. The best way to do this is with a therapist who can help you manage your emotion
- Set boundaries – make sure that you have set boundaries between yourself and your narcissistic ex-partner. This is important to do because most narcissists will try their best to come back into your life.
True narcissists are self-centered people, who are arrogant and have little to no consideration for other people. Being in a relationship with a narcissistic partner is quite damaging to your self-worth and can have serious consequences. Narcissists are master manipulators who can sometimes leave you even second-guessing yourself, this is why these relationships are so dangerous.
This is why it is so important to keep an eye out for the red flags that we have mentioned in this article. This will help you figure out if your partner is a narcissist, and if they will be able to get the help that they need.
Now that you know what narcissistic personality disorder is and how to identify it in your relationship. You will be able to handle certain situations better in your relationship. If you truly believe your partner is a narcissist it is important for them to seek help. This will not only be beneficial to them but to you as well.
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