Narcissism defines a behavior where people are self-centered and focused on self-inflation. It’s a personality disorder in which people think extremely highly of themselves and don’t empathize with other people’s feelings and needs.
Narcissists have an excessive sense of self-importance and lack empathy for others. They prioritize themselves and don’t care about their partner’s feelings or needs. In a successful relationship, both partners should give and take, but narcissists focus solely on what they can gain, disregarding their partner’s worth and emotions.
How to Identify Narcissists – Signs & Symptoms
Narcissistic people often make others, especially their partners, feel like they are too much or too less and don’t appreciate them for what they really are. They would intentionally or unintentionally seek attention from people around them all the time and won’t pay heed to others’ feelings. They are more judgmental than kind and manipulate people into thinking they are the problem.
In the long run, such a one-sided relationship will fail and end in disaster, as it lacks the mutual respect and consideration necessary for a healthy partnership.
Here are a few reasons why narcissistic people struggle with intimate relationships:
1. Narcissists do not trust others
Narcissists might not understand emotions well, but they’re good at manipulating others. They know trust and being open are connected, yet they can’t truly connect with people. They get into one-sided “relationships” to take advantage of others, always focused on their needs. To protect themselves, they act distant and closed off, avoiding any show of trust or vulnerability.
2. They’re always looking for angles
Narcissists are always trying to get the upper hand. They might act all loving at first to gain trust, but then they turn mean. They go after caring people, thinking kindness is a weakness. This can trap empathetic people who believe the best in others. Narcissists only give to get something in return – it’s never genuine. They grew up without love, so they don’t really know how to love without wanting something back.
3. Narcissists are prone to abusive behavior
Not all narcissists are mean or dangerous, but if you’re in a relationship with one, the chances of them being hurtful – like using hurtful words, causing emotional pain, or even being physically harmful – are much higher. While not all narcissists go this far, it’s smart to be careful and make sure you’re safe and feeling okay in any relationship. Your well-being is really important.
4. There is no “us” for narcissists
Narcissists treat people like tools, using them for their own needs because they grew up feeling threatened by others. When they’re in relationships, they usually want something hidden. But after a while, their partner might feel something’s wrong. The narcissist might seem like they don’t care, aren’t interested in normal couple things, and don’t show feelings when expected. Even though they don’t show those things, they still want their partner to show them care and empathy.
5. It’s (probably) impossible
Narcissists struggle with healthy relationships unless they get help. They mostly care about themselves unless they learn to care about others too. Being with them often leads to feeling let down or hurt. It might seem like a narcissist loves you, but it’s like wearing glasses that hide the truth. When you take them off, you see their lies and hurtful ways. Stepping back, you realize they only wanted what you could do for them.
Did you learn something new about narcissists and relationships? Share your thoughts with us in the comments – we’re here to listen!