“Living with a narcissist requires a different or more advanced emotional skill set,” says Kimberly Perlin, a licensed clinical social worker Towson, MD. She specializes in helping women in relationships with narcissists and also treats narcissists. How to handle a narcissist is really difficult.
Living with a narcissist can be emotionally challenging and frustrating. Your relationship may revolve around them. You may feel judged and exhausted by their demands. It can undoubtedly impact your sense of safety, self-esteem, and overall quality of life. You might spend a great deal of time trying to deal with a narcissist.
How to spot a Narcissist
Narcissists have a strong sense of grandiosity. This means that they think they’re more important than others and often seek out admiration.
- Have a strong sense of grandiosity (they have high levels of self-esteem, self-importance, self-confidence, and often feel like they’re superior to others)
- Are arrogant
- Take advantage of others to get what they want
- Believe they’re unique or special
- Exaggerate achievements and talents
- Need constant admiration
- Feel envy toward others
- Believe others envy them
- Lack empathy
- Are obsessed with fantasies of brilliance, power, or success
- Have a sense of entitlement
How to handle a Narcissist : what to do
- Learn About Narcissism: For a person to know how to handle a narcissist, one must some time learning, reading, and understanding about narcissism and its impact. It can help you understand the narcissist’s strengths and weaknesses and learn how to handle them better. Knowing who they are may also allow you to accept the situation for what it is and have realistic expectations. Fortunately, the concept of narcissism has gained attention in the mainstream media. Therefore, having the language to identify your experience can support you in feeling empowered with your situation.
- Set boundaries : State and Reiterate Your Firm Boundaries. Boundaries are essential for protecting yourself from the damaging effects of narcissistic abuse. Boundaries can be physical, emotional, digital, or financial. It may upset or disappoint the narcissist, but that’s OK. Remember, it’s not your job to control that person’s emotions, Perlin says.
- Create a support system. Living with a narcissist can lead to feelings of insecurity, confusion, and self-doubt. Therefore , seeking support and having healthy relationships outside of the home can be paramount for your well-being “Make sure you have a core group of people in your life that can support you,” Talley says.
- Bring in a counselor. Therapy can not cures your narcissism but it may help you work certain things out. A counselor can show you ways to approach problem-solving with the narcissist.
What not to do with a Narcissist
There are certain things that may trigger problems with a Narcissist, so it’s best to avoid them
- Do not direct them. Narcissists like to have control everything around then and often fear losing it. Trying to control or improve their behavior often backfires. “Efforts to lead or instruct a narcissist will often fail,” Manly says.
- Avoid Blaming Yourself : Anyone living with a narcissist struggles to accept personal accountability for their actions. As a result, they habitually blame themselves . But, this action only tends to reinforce narcissistic behavior, and it can deteriorate your self-esteem. Instead, try to focus on being objective with yourself and the situation. Avoid taking responsibility when things aren’t your fault.
- Don’t argue or confront. Narcissism often coincides with intense emotion and rage. Don’t personalize tantrums or outbursts. Therefore it’s best not to confront a narcissist directly.
In conclusion, People with narcissistic personality disorder usually don’t change, so keep that in mind. Even if you learn to manage your relationship better, it probably won’t ever be a healthy relationship.