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Sunday, October 25, 2020

Dating a Narcissistic Partner? Here’s How to Know

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Have you ever being with someone that thinks so highly of their self in such a way that appears too egoistic or abnormal? If you can’t think of someone, maybe you should start wondering if you are that someone. It’s okay to be confident and has a lot of self-esteem, but with a narcissist, it is way different.

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Narcissism is typically seen as deriving gratification from one’s physical appearance, which may be real or perceived. While people see narcissism as usual and a way to boost self-esteem, Narcissism can lead to a condition known as Narcissist personality disorder (NPD). This condition is characterised by a lack of empathy for others, an overwhelming sense of admiration, and an exaggerated sense of superiority.

A narcissist is a person who has created a self-image of who they think they are. Most narcissists had rough childhoods, which affected their self-esteem. In a way to regain their self-esteem or ego, they create this ideal image or personality of themselves, from which they derive gratification and self-importance. Buried underneath this typical personality, is a wounded and insecure person who lacks self-worth.

A narcissist most times feel offended or turn to violence when the attention, admiration or gratification they seek is not met. Although it has been proven that men have more narcissistic tendencies than women, that does not leave the female gender out of this ravaging disorder.

Narcissistic Partner

The next big question is can a narcissist fall in love? Absolutely yes. However, nobody can be more loving than a narcissist, when you are playing on their terms. Here are ways to help you know you have been dating a narcissist.

1. They make you feel less superior

Narcissists have an exaggerated sense of superiority. They see themselves as very special and hence would accept nothing less. Their sense of superiority makes them power-driven, and they can go any length to ensure they keep it so.

Examples are;

  • I paid for this house. Therefore it is mine!
  • I am better than you are.

2. They are manipulative

Narcissists will go to any length to make sure they get what they want, to make them feel good. Within an intimate relationship, they can use sex, persuasion, charm or any other form to get what they want. They may also require the partner to dress, eat, or act in a specific manner that will improve their own self-worth. Examples are;

  • That dress doesn’t look good on you; we are partying with my friends; wear this instead.
  • I have given you everything, yet you are so ungrateful.

3. They want to be the centre of attention

A narcissist focuses on his or herself. They are often conversation hoarders. They want to tell you everything about themselves. The latest achievement they had, the new car they bought, how well people think of them. You may be having a conversation with a narcissist, and he is she is always interrupting you, just to say something to make them feel good. If you are on a date and you meet with a new group of persons, they want the conversation to revolve around them.

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4. They respond with negative emotions when their needs are not met

They can throw tantrums, resort to violence, verbal abuse or withdraw into a cold silence. They do this with an intention to make their partner feel guilty and become persuaded into doing what they want. Examples are;

  • I never loved you, so don’t think I can’t do without you.
  • You mean nothing to me!

5. Entitlement

Narcissists expect unmerited and special treatment from their partner. They make you feel you are entitled to giving them whatever they need. Often, they do not give the same proportion of treatment back.

Dealing with a narcissistic partner

Having identified that your partner is narcissistic, you have two options; to either leave or learn how to cope with them if you think you love them enough. For the latter option, you have to convince them to see a therapist.

There is a scientific cure for NPD, but with the right therapy, they can learn how to be empathic, which is necessary for overcoming narcissism. You should only be making this effort if the partner is willing to cooperate. However, if you can’t deal with it, then I would want you to do what I would have done, leave.

Do you suppose your partner is a narcissist? What ways have you adopted in dealing with this issue? Share with us in the comments. Thank you,

Oluwafemi Michael
Oluwafemi Michael is an online Mental Health Therapist, Advocate for Mental Health Awareness, a programmer, and also a content creator from Edo state, Akoko-Edo LG.

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