Diagnostic and Statistical Manual defines narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) as a mental disorder that causes people to have an overinflated perception of their worth as well as a strong desire to be admired and praised with a lot of attention as well as relationships that are troublesome, and an absence of compassion for other people. Be aware, however that a lot of people display narcissistic traits but not necessarily have NPD. This could include:
- An inflated self-esteem
- Needing constant praise
- Profiting from others
- Not understanding or caring for the requirements of other people
People who have NPD or Narcissistic tendencies tend to be extremely vulnerable to critique. They possess “fragile, inflated self-esteem.” This means that they are heavily dependent upon external approval as well as self-deception, or fantasies about success as well as power and beauty.
Dealing with a Narcissistic Lover
If you think that your partner could be a narcissist you could find that he may not be aware of the negative impact his behaviour can have on your relationship or perhaps not want to act. However, there are some ways that you can do to be more respectful and safeguard your mental well-being. This could include setting clear boundaries, not getting into arguments and seeking support from online counsellor, caring for your wellbeing and so on.
Here are some suggestions for how to handle a partner who is a narcissist:
Establish Clear Boundaries
Insisting on unreasonable demands, and insisting on them, despite the way you feel can suggest that you’re a Narcissist. Therefore, establishing clearly defined boundaries within your relationship is vital. Know what’s acceptable and what’s not in regards to physical, emotional, or sexual actions. Be prepared to leave in the event that these boundaries are not respected. Maintaining and establishing boundaries can safeguard your health when your spouse tries to go over the line.
Don’t be caught up in your emotions. Wait until you are able to clearly communicate with your partner and get heard. In the next step, you can express directly how the behaviour of your partner is impacting you and what your requirements are. Make sure to frame your conversation using fair-fighting rules. Avoid criticism or name calling as well as paying attention. A structured conversation can reduce stress when asserting yourself and can lead to more healthy methods of communicating with your companion.
Since narcissists have black or white mindset, argumentation can be ineffective. Therefore, resolving conflicts with a narcissist is harder. In addition, they can be angry and violent when confronted. This is why it’s important to refrain from fighting with your partner or even “agree to disagree”. If you don’t, these arguments could cause you to be emotionally exhausted and negatively impact your mental state over the long term.
Don’t Take Things Personally
Your spouse may be threatening, harsh or criticize your character without any reason. Do not take it as personal if you wish to maintain your self-confidence and self-esteem. These behaviours are not acceptable, and should prompt you to consider the emotional and mental strains the relationship could be a part of.
Focus on Self-Care
Maybe you’ve lost yourself in the past, due to focused on the needs of your partner. Therefore, it’s essential that you shift your focus to taking treatment of yourself. Begin with the basics- eating sleep, exercising, and sleeping to maintain your mental well-being. Do not forget to include enjoyable and healthy pursuits (outside of your relationship) such as a new pastime or volunteering, travel or other activities. Self-care is a great way to improve your overall health and decrease the stress you feel.
Seek Professional Guidance
Apart from self-care, you should pay attention to your mental health as well. It is advantageous to talk to a professional in mental health who can offer a space which is secure and encouraging. Therapy can also give you the assistance and guidance that you require to deal with your relationship with a person who is a narcissist. Additionally, a trained online counsellor can assist in identifying the narcissistic patterns that could lead to violence or even threaten your security.
Connect and Reach Out to Others
If you’re living with a narcissistic spouse, odds are you’re not receiving the respect and moral support that you need. This is why it’s crucial to build friendships with your family and friends and receive the needed validation and support. In addition, contacting people who are there for you will help ease the feeling of isolation. This can be a challenge in the event that your partner attempts to make you feel isolated. It is important to focus on having this security net is essential.
Learn About Narcissism
Before jumping into your relationship, you should be educated about Narcissism. Understanding the nature of this disorder and the various aspects that it brings will help you determine whether your spouse is a narcissist and to what extent. It will also allow you to determine if a co-occurring mental problem could be involved. You’ll be better equipped to manage your relationship, safeguard your emotional well-being and re-evaluate your relationship.
Know When It’s Time to Leave
It isn’t easy, particularly when you develop feelings towards your partner. However, if your partner is affecting your mental health, continues to engage in unacceptable behaviours, lacks the qualities you need and deserve in a person, and/or has acted violently/aggressively towards you, then it’s time to walk away. Before doing so, make sure that you have taken the proper safety precautions. Many people who are narcissists become angry and violent if their spouses end the relationship.
When to Seek Professional Help
It is recommended to seek out therapy when you’re feeling stuck in a bind and feel helpless. Online Counseling from a professional can help you review your behaviour and determine the most effective strategies to move forward.
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