A narcissistic personality disorder is a mental condition in which a person considers themselves too important and above everyone else. They lack sensitivity and empathy for others. Their fake confidence belies their fragile ego. They dwell in their bubble of superiority and cannot handle even the slightest criticism (1).
Dealing with a narcissistic woman can take a toll on your mental health as she often derives a sense of pleasure by deriding others. Here are the common traits of a narcissistic woman and ways you can deal with her.
12 Traits Of A Narcissistic Woman
A narcissistic woman can hamper your self-esteem and confidence. Here are some signs you’re in a relationship with a narcissistic woman (2).
1. She refuses to accept interpersonal boundaries
A narcissistic woman does not respect boundaries in any relationship. She thinks she deserves preferential treatment over others and will disrespect your need for boundaries. She enjoys putting you in a spot by often crossing the line.
2. She takes pleasure in your pain
She suffers from low self-esteem, and to feel better she tries to put others down. She makes snide remarks and overly criticizes to make you feel inferior. Even when you share your achievement with her, she brushes it off as unimportant.
3. She tries to ruin your other relationships
A female narcissist would like to keep you under her control at any cost, and so she ensures to create a rift between you and your dear ones. She does this by spreading rumors about you or by creating misunderstandings between you and others.
4. She talks only about herself
Talking highly of herself is what a narcissistic woman loves to do. She will exaggerate her achievements and create a grand but false image of herself. She will convince you that she is a highly desirable woman so that you admire her.
5. She plays the victim card
For a narcissistic woman, her life’s struggles and pain are bigger than anyone else’s. She may not be boastful of her difficulties in life, but when you try to share your problems, she will divert the topic to her problems and make herself look like a martyr.
6. She blames you for her mistakes
A narcissistic woman believes she never makes a mistake, so when something goes wrong, it most certainly has to be the other person. She will never admit her mistake and look for ways to push the blame on someone else.
7. She cannot tolerate slights
If a narcissistic woman ever finds you criticizing her or speaking ill of her, she quickly defends herself. She overreacts in such a manner that it makes you feel bad and guilty for doubting her.
8. She has no regard for your feelings
Caring for you is not something that comes easily to a narcissistic woman. You may be having a fever, but she still complains about you falling ill the day she wants to spend time with you. She guilt-trips you into doing things the way she wants it.
9. She swings between idealizing and devaluating
During the initial days, a narcissistic woman will love bomb you and get you addicted to her affection and attention. Once she feels you have grown addicted to them, she will swiftly pull the rug from under your feet. She enjoys playing with emotions by idealizing and devaluating you.
10. She is materialistic
The outer appearance and public image are extremely important for a narcissistic woman, and so her love is also concerned with only material benefits. Once the benefits dry up, so does her love. She does not get involved with someone who has nothing beneficial to offer.
11. She believes everyone envies her
Maintaining long-term friends or relationships is difficult for a narcissistic woman as she feels everyone is jealous. Since she considers herself superior to others, she refrains from acknowledging other’s achievements over hers, which often damages her relationships.
12. She withholds sex as a punishment
As a partner, if a narcissistic woman feels that you have let her down, she will find ways to punish you. The silent treatment or withholding sex are some of the ways in which she ensures that you do not ever try to make her feel unimportant or inferior in any way.
Ways To Deal With A Narcissist Woman
If your partner shows all or most of the above signs, she is likely to be a narcissistic woman. Here are some ways in which you can deal with them.
1. Acknowledge the fact
You need to acknowledge the fact that the woman you are with is a narcissist. She may be sweet and loving at first, but her attitude changes when you make a mistake. You may feel that your shortcomings prompt her rude behavior, but in reality, she is a narcissist, and nothing you do will change that about her.
2. Establish clear boundaries
Once you know how your narcissistic woman behaves, create firm and clear boundaries. This is to safeguard your interest while also keeping your relationship intact.
3. Do not let her mess with you
Her manipulation tactics might compel you to work hard to be on her good side. However, your efforts might never be enough for her. Instead, have faith in yourself and do not let your self-confidence dwindle. Do not allow her remarks to affect you deeply.
4. Avoid criticizing her
She is not someone to take criticism easily, so try to avoid it as much as you can. Instead, frame your words in such a way that it does not look like a critique but a suggestion that will benefit her in some way.
5. Speak up when needed
Times when she crosses the boundaries or negatively affects you, speak up for yourself. Let her know how her actions impact you, and you won’t tolerate certain behavior in a relationship. Do not let her feel that she can walk over you without any consequences.
6. Remember that it is not your fault
There will be times when she will blame you for her misery but do not lose sight of the fact that you probably are not to be blamed. Do not accept blame when you have done nothing wrong. Do not let her negative attitude get to you and affect you in any way.
7. Create distance between you and her
When you feel her narcissistic tendency is overwhelming you, do not hesitate to put some distance between you and her. Take a break and spend some time away from her to focus on yourself. Do things that make you happy and rejuvenate your energy so you can heal from any pain.
8. Avoid reacting
Whenever your narcissistic female partner tries to gaslight you, try to avoid reacting to her. When she does not get any reaction out of you, she will give up eventually. And you will escape a bullet unhurt.
9. Maintain other relations
Do not cut off from your friends and family. Being in a difficult relationship can impact your other relations. Make efforts to keep in touch with those who matter to you. Having a social circle helps you take your mind off unwanted stress.
10. Seek professional help
Dealing with a narcissistic woman is not easy. When you feel you are unable to handle it anymore, seek help from a professional counselor. You may seek help for yourself, and if possible, for your partner too. A good professional will guide you on how to tackle your partner without hurting their feelings or yours.
Having a relationship with a narcissistic female can have its good and bad days like any other relationship. However, despite trying everything, if the relationship affects you mentally and physically, it is not worth the pain. Always choose your happiness and health over a toxic partner.
- P Mitra and D Fluyau; Narcissistic Personality Disorder; NCBI;
- E L. Kacel, N Ennis, and D. B. Pereira; Narcissistic Personality Disorder in Clinical Health Psychology Practice: Case Studies of Comorbid Psychological Distress and Life-Limiting Illness; US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health (2018);