Are you dating a narcissistic? 

 

Dating a narcissistic is complicated to say the least, whether the narcissist is your parent, partner, boss, or best friend. From what I have learned from my clients and my education, it is clear that there are some tell-tale signs of what it looks like to be associated with someone who is a narcissist or has narcissistic tendencies. 

Often narcissists will demonstrate obsession or idealization of the person. This person is usually on a pedestal and the narcissist will sing this person’s praises (aka love bombing). The person gets significance from the narcissist and connection. The narcissist also gets significance through the adoration and admiration of the other person. This is a vital need for someone who is a narcissist. 

The relationship between the narcissist and the other person (often someone who is co-dependent, people pleaser, or a trauma victim) engage in this relationship as long as the non-narcissistic person continues to engage in the relationship in the same way. As boundaries are set or requests are made or attention shifts, the person who is engaging in narcissistic behaviors begins to disconnect from their partner or other person. 

The non-narcissist is now no longer perfect or idealized and the person with narcissism devalues and eventually discards the other person. Often at this point in the relationship the narcissist will increase behaviors such as gaslighting, crazy-making conversation, withdrawing, and seeking alternative ways to get their needs met (other friendship, partners, or family members). 

At times the person with narcissistic tendencies or with the personality disorder will self-sabotage creating circumstances where other people will abandon them due to their behavior (abusive or ethically questionable). Other times, the narcissistic person will disengage completely as to be the person in control and “to leave” before they are left. 

As long as the narcissistic person is getting their needs met of significance through someone elevating them and focusing on their needs they will continue the relationship. As soon as that need is not being met, the person will repeat the cycle. 

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