7 Signs Of Narcissistic Husband Or Wife And Ways To Deal With Them

Narcissistic Husband

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“It is sad when you realize you aren’t as important to someone as you thought you were.” To be together but to be alone is one of the worst feelings in any kind of relationship. If you are a person who is used to giving into every whim of your partner, and if your partner is forever caught up in his/her own world, you are in a bad situation. People who are narcissists are self-centred and their priority is themselves. They heed to their needs and ignore those of everyone around them.

How do you spot such a relationship and how do you plan to get around it? Ending a relationship isn’t the easiest way out all the time. MomJunction tries to ease out your worries and bring you everything on narcissistic relations.

What Is Narcissism?

One of the easiest ways to identify narcissists is the extreme admiration they have for themselves. Narcissist people are those love their own looks and appearance. Not only do they hold themselves in the highest regard, but also expect everyone else around them to think and believe so. A narcissist always seems to be extremely selfish, arrogant, inconsiderate, jealous, and vain. Another person would only matter to them for wish-fulfillment. Narcissism is categorized as a mental and personality disorder.

[ Read: How To identify Toxic Relationships ]

Types Of Narcissism:

Here are the two different types of narcissism you may come across if you are in a relationship with one: [1]

1. Vulnerable Narcissist:

  1. Much against what you may watch out for, a vulnerable narcissist will be shy and an introvert. He would seem like someone who has an inferiority complex and the case may be so extreme that the person would go to any lengths to overcome it. [2]
  1. To hide feelings of shyness and low confidence, the narcissist will wear a mask of arrogance and self-hatred. In many cases, a vulnerable narcissist will try to project a feeling of being intensely unworthy.
  1. Especially with partners who seem confident about themselves, the narcissist may come off as too strong, over-confident, and loud. A narcissist will need to feel superior and special without any regard to what others may feel.
  1. One of the main reasons a narcissist behaves this way is out of the fear of rejection. The fear of being left alone or abandoned by the partner translates into wanting self-love and admiration. The narcissist may forget that loving and caring back is equally important.
  1. A vulnerable narcissist may resort to manipulative tactics such as self-shaming and guilt, to get the attention and sympathy of the partner.

2. Grandiose Narcissist:

  1. The most common narcissists to identify, and hence, they are named grandiose. They are often referred to as invulnerable narcissists. Almost always, the grandiose narcissists come across as highly confident and cold people who do not care about what their partners or other people may feel. [3]
  1. In a sharp contrast to the vulnerable narcissists, the grandiose narcissists will try to gain attention, admiration, and power by being very in-your-face. They will not mind the fact that people may look at them as being selfish and self-centered. In fact, this would only boost them up.
  1. Unlike vulnerable narcissists, the grandiose ones consider themselves above everyone else, their partners even. They do not consider anyone better than themselves and would, therefore, not treat others with respect and admiration. In fact, if anyone behaved in a way that is not by the grandiose, it would surprise and infuriate them. They would have an inherent need to educate everyone around them of their superiority.
  1. In order to get the admiration, approval, respect, and complete acquiescence of their partner, the grandiose will resort to any means, including anger, making the partner feel guilty or worthless, and more.

6 Possible Causes Of Narcissism:

There are no definite causes that are known to lead to a narcissistic personality disorder. While some experts feel that the root of narcissism lies in events that may have taken place in the person’s childhood and influenced him accordingly, others feel that being exposed to a narcissist at a very young age could lead to narcissism.

Here are some of the most common causes which experts feel could lead to narcissism, though there is no definite proof of the same: [4]

1. Too Pampered As A Child:

If the child is always pampered by parents and other members of the family, he or she may grow up feeling extra-special and superior.

[ Read: Effects Of Uninvolved Parenting On Children ]

2. High Parental Expectation:

When parents have extremely high expectations from the child, it creates undue pressure and leads the child to turn into a person who always tries to please people. Even though the child may not enjoy it, he or she will always try to match up to the parent’s expectation, and suffer from guilt when unable to do so.

3. Feeling Neglected:

Not getting enough attention from parents can lead to feelings of neglect. As a result, the child may grow up and demand absolute attention, time, and devotion from the partner.

4. Witnessing Abuse As A Child:

In certain cases, a child could grow up to be a narcissist if he or she has faced some kind of abuse such as physical violence, abusive language, threatening body language. This could either have been inflicted upon them or on any of their family members.

5. Genetic Inheritance:

Narcissistic personality traits could also be linked to the genetic makeup, where the brain behaves, thinks, and reacts in specific ways to specific situations and triggers.

6. Unable To Vent Feelings As A Child:

If as a child, one is asked to constantly mask emotions as it could seem like a sign of weakness, it could turn into a negative character trait. Growing up like this, the child will not be able to understand others’ emotions and will not be an empathetic person.

[ Read: How To Communicate With Your Spouse ]

Can Narcissism Point To Something Else?

In a few cases, a narcissist person could have had a narcissist parent and grew up witnessing the effects first-hand. Narcissist parents offer their children various chances to develop but provide no real motivation, support, or love. For instance, a narcissist parent will want a genius for a child, so as to brag. However, they will not offer any real support or guidance to help the child be one.

If your partner has a narcissistic personality trait, it could mean that he or she felt abandoned or were not loved as a child. Also, your partner may have had to struggle a lot as a child to get what they needed. They would have had to put in a lot of effort move out of any feelings of self-despair and confusion.

7 Signs Of Narcissistic Husband Or Wife:

You may have already sensed it, or maybe you feel that’s just how your partner is. But if you constantly notice these following signs in your partner, chances are, you are involved with a narcissist:

1. Always Talks About Self:

Whatever be the setting, your partner will always take the lead and talk about themselves. If you tried to deviate from their conversation, you would be given only a small window to talk, and your partner would move to talking about themselves again. Voicing opinions or ideas could be difficult. Also, if you say something that does not align with your partner’s views, he or she will try to correct you, or ignore it outright. You may also notice that in an effort to do so, your partner may come across as being loud, obnoxious, rude, and arrogant.

2. No Rules Apply:

Those who have narcissist tendencies always think of rules as something that is beyond their dignity to follow. Simple habits like following the traffic rule or respecting a time commitment will not be something your partner will honor. In fact, your partner may go all out to specifically break a rule and show that it just does not matter to them.

3. Looks Will Always Be First Priority:

For your narcissist partner, looks will always be the top-most priority, as making the first impression will be of extreme importance. Your partner will spend a lot of time preening and taking care of looks, including clothes, shoes, accessories, perfumes, and such. In most cases, how you dress up or the way you look will rarely matter to him or her, as you will always remain the secondary one in the relationship. Once your partner is ready, you will be expected to admire and appreciate your partner on looks and tell them how amazing they look.

[ Read: Tips For A Happy Marriage ]

4. Charming Glory:

When your partner wants to make you agree to something, be assured that you will be charmed off your feet. A narcissistic spouse can almost always get out of any sticky situation, by using the biggest magic trick of all – charm. In most cases, you may not even realize that this is how it played out, but when you look back and think upon it, you will see how you were manipulated to take a decision, according to them.

5. Can Get Easily Offended:

It is very easy to tick off your narcissist partner and send him or her into a spell of negative moods. One of the surest ways in which you will know that your partner is a narcissist is if each time you disagree with your partner or fail to give him or her attention, there will always be a temper tantrum or a sulking phase. Your partner will be offended if you do not give them enough time, as perceived by him or her. High praise and the best human awards are also what your partner is looking for. He or she always wants to be shown around as the best person. If you fail to do so, be ready to bear some sulking and guilt feeling of having neglected them.

6. Greater Than Everyone Else:

Your partner may or may not love you as much as you love him or her, but they will still believe that you have the best partner in the world. For a narcissist person, every relationship is about their self. Your partner will genuinely feel that he or she is nothing short of a celebrity, and as a result, will feel entitled to special treatment and adoration. With this huge self-image in mind, your partner will believe that you cannot live without him or her, no matter what you are getting out of the relationship.

7. No Concept Of Boundaries:

Narcissists do not understand what it means to give someone their space and how to respect social boundaries. It means that as a partner, your significant other will not take into consideration the fact that their action could hurt you, or that you may not always agree with what they do. Your partner may borrow your money or any prized possession and not bother to return it. It becomes a recurring habit, one that your partner will also display while dealing with others. And it does not stop at materialistic things. It moves to not respecting your schedule, work, etc.

[ Read: How To Be A Good Wife ]

6 Adverse Effects Of Narcissism On Relationship:

When you are in a relationship with a narcissistic personality, chances are your relationship will be in a downward spiral. Here are a few ways in which your partner’s narcissism can strain the relationship: [5]

  1. No Unconditional Love: Your partner will never be able to love you fully. Most narcissists have trouble loving and accepting their own self for the way they are.
  1. Unable To Understand Your Needs: Being too focused on his or her own needs, your partner will never be able to understand the extent of your needs in the relationship.
  1. Take You For Granted: As your partner will have a very grand feeling about his or her image, they will almost always take you for granted. You will be the partner in the relationship who will always be there, no matter what. As a result, your partner will not make any extra efforts to make sure you feel happy or loved.
  1. No Control Over Your Life: While you are in a relationship with a narcissist, you will start to lose control of your views, opinions, your choices and very soon, almost all aspects of your life. Your partner will very convincingly control you and in time, will also start taking decisions on your behalf. The following effect may be that you may start reflecting your partner’s views, and actions.
  1. Extreme Jealousy And Loss Of Social Life: Your partner will tend to get jealous very soon and may take your inattention as a sign of disinterest. It could reach a point where your partner could accuse you of being unloving and uncaring. Also, your partner may start getting uncomfortable of your other relationships, such as your relationships with your friends, co-workers or family, and demand your hundred percent attention, time, and love.
  1. Loss Of Self-Worth: Your narcissist partner will never be happy in the relationship, and there will be times when you will feel guilty and responsible for the same. You may think that you are not good enough for your partner and that the reason your partner is not happy is because of your failings. Soon your feelings can turn inward, where you will hold yourself responsible for your partner’s negative attitude.

How to Deal With a Narcissistic Husband or Wife:

  1. Do not give in to your partner’s attention seeking tactics. Instead, tell yourself that it is alright to take time out for yourself and spend it the way you want to.
  1. Tell yourself that you are a wonderful person who is capable of loving and taking smart decisions. Keep your self-worth on one of your higher priority points and make sure you remind yourself each day that you deserve love, respect, and admiration.
  1. If you are trying to work out the relationship but feel constantly criticized, get in touch with people who are aware of your nature and speak to them. Go out and meet friends, talk to them over the phone, and reassert your importance and your goodness as a human being.
  1. Understand that you cannot suddenly change your partner’s personality, and you may never be able to change your partner’s personality at all. Do consider if you wish to live like this forever.
  1. Think of the gestures your partner has made that made you feel loved and happy. It will help to reaffirm your faith in your partner and the relationship as a whole.

[ Read: How To Be A Good Husband ]

  1. Do not shy away from sharing your feelings with your partner. If you feel unloved and unworthy in the relationship, tell your partner about it without worrying that it will hurt your partner. Be honest in your communication and talk without fear.
  1. Tell your partner about the things that are not acceptable to you in a relationship and set some boundaries. Also, make sure you tell your partner the consequences of breaking those boundaries, but do so without sounding admonishing or punishing.

How To Cure Or Stop Narcissism:

The main way to treat narcissism is through psychotherapy, which is often a long-term treatment option. Here are a few things that could help: [6]

  1. Help the person relate better with others and form a stronger and love-filled relationship.
  1. Understand what causes negative emotions and learn how to better deal with them in a positive manner.
  1. Understand self-potential so that it becomes easier to accept criticism and act on them.

There are no medications that are used for treating narcissism. However, if your partner has any additional symptoms, such as depression, anxiety or other issues, the doctor may prescribe required medication.

How To Control Your Narcissism:

It is difficult to take charge of your narcissism, but with time and patience, the following steps can help:

  1. Each time you get upset by an act or comment, take some time out to understand why that specific action happened. Understand what you did that led to such a reaction. Identifying your triggers will be the first step to successfully handle narcissism.
  1. Cut yourself some slack and understand that it is okay to not be perfect all the time. Success and failure are a part of life, and just as you may be successful in a lot of things you do, it is also alright to fail at certain areas in life.
    1. Connect with others who you know are better than you think. If you feel you are better than everyone you know of, join a class and follow an instructor where you can surely learn something new. Learning to follow instructions and acknowledging someone else as superior to you in any field is also a good way to tell your mind that you are not the most superior person around.

[ Read: Signs Your Marriage Is Over ]

How To Move Out Of A Narcissistic Relationship:

Ending a relationship is always painful, and one in which you are involved with a narcissist can get even more difficult to move out of. Narcissists are usually charmers and great at manipulating you, so even if some part of you may feel that you need to move out, you may not be ready to do so. Here are a few things you should consider to move out of a narcissistic relationship:

  1. Stop blaming yourself for everything that goes wrong in your partner’s life. If your partner continues to make you feel responsible, ask him or her to stop it right then.
  1. Understand that your partner will never change in his or her ways, and tell yourself that you deserve better.
  1. Start voicing your displeasure and hold your ground.
  1. Start spending time outside your relationship in activities that make you happy. Don’t make your life all about your partner’s wants and needs.
  1. Start alienating yourself physically as well as emotionally. Each time you feel you are unfair to your partner, tell yourself that you are fair to yourself instead.
  1. If you are not able to say it out loud, write a letter to your narcissist partner and explain why you are moving out, and pour out all your hurt and anger.

When you are in a relationship with a narcissist, your life will no longer be about you, but will completely be taken over by your partner. Read the warning signs at the earliest and try to keep a clear demarcation of what is correct and what is not acceptable. Most important of all, remember that you are a wonderful human being who deserves lots of love and happiness, so choose wisely.

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