Receive LOVE in your mailbox

Try our weekly newsletter with amazing tips to bring and retain love in your life

16 All-too-clear Signs You’re Stuck In A Narcissistic Relationship

Have you ever wondered the origin of the word narcissism? It comes from the Greek myth about Narcissus, a handsome Greek youth who declined the advances of the nymph Echo, and fell in love with his own reflection in a pool of water. So, unable to consummate his love, he lay there gazing at his own reflection hour after hour, until he finally changed into a flower, which is now bears his name.

With the advent of selfies and social media, it seems like you come across a narcissist at least once a day in your news feed, eh? To be clear, a narcissist is a person who is in love with themselves, who thinks they are the best at everything they do, and that they are the center of their universe.



Image source: Flickr

But what about being in a narcissistic relationship with one? Initially, when you had your blinder on and the rose-tinted glasses were firmly on your eyes, you thought your spouse had a lot of confidence, and that they are self-assured. However, over time, a narcissist’s true self is revealed, through their demeanor as well as their apparent lack of empathy.

Suggested read: Early signs you’re dating a narcissist

So, now that your blinders have come off and the rose-tinted glasses have been chucked aside, you may be worried that you’re in a narcissistic relationship. Here are 16 signs that help you see whether you are in one or not.

1. Using people

If you’re in a relationship with a narcissist, chances are you feel like you’re being used. You might also feel underappreciated by your partner. This is common because narcissists rarely care about anyone other themselves, if at all. After all, they are their number one priority, at all times. This means they are willing to do anything and go to any lengths to make themselves feel good, while not even trying to put in even a bit of that effort into making you feel good. So obviously you’ll end up feeling used, because in essence, you are.

2. Going from overvaluing to undervaluing

couple disagreement_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

In the beginning, did your partner treat you like you were the center of their universe? That the whole world revolved around you and your whims? Did they take effort to make you feel really special? But it wouldn’t have lasted long, I’m guessing, if you’re reading this article. Then comes the point where they make you feel like they’re doing you a huge favor by being with you, that you must be thanking your lucky stars that they’re even in your life. These are very common when you’re in a relationship with a narcissist.

3. Throwing confidence around

The one thing narcissists have in abundance is confidence. They are confident in whatever they do and say, and hence they must be really great, right? Wrong! This is how narcissists make you believe that they’re brilliant, making you want to know them, making you feel privileged to be in their esteemed presence, thereby ensuring that the world revolves around them.

4. Taking numerous selfies

woman taking a selfie_New_Love_Times

Image source: Pixabay, under Creative Commons License

This sign of identifying a narcissist wouldn’t have been on this list even a few years ago, but this is a clear indicator in the day of selfies and social media that we live in. Does your partner post a ton of selfies from every angle onto their social media page, every day? Taking selfies and posting them online as proof of their perfection, is what boosts a narcissist’s ego. It’s a huge massage of their ego and pride.

5. Spending hours in the gym

Not every gym rat is a narcissist, but you can easily pick one out. You see, a narcissist has the least interest in being fit and healthy; that’s not why they spend hours in the gym. They go to ensure that they’re still better looking than anybody else. They wait for the chance to show off their hard work, and if it doesn’t arise on its own, then they make sure that they get one – by hook or by crook. One more way of showing off is by casually bringing into conversation how many squats they did or how much they can bench press at one go. They are hoping to be complimented by the listener to feel better about themselves.

6. Turning the conversation onto themselves

On occasion, everyone likes to talk about themselves. But a narcissist takes this to a whole new level, by turning the conversation – no matter what the conversation is about – onto themselves. Say, a friend is sharing the pain of going through a bad breakup. Instead of consoling the friend, your narcissistic partner goes off on a bad breakup they had, and how much pain they had to endure. They have the unique knack of turning every conversation and topic onto themselves.

7. Incapable of feeling empathy

couple disagreement_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

Your narcissistic partner doesn’t show empathy; in fact, they can’t, because they just can’t put themselves in anyone else’s shoes other than their own. Whether you’re hurting from something they did, or you’re facing a work-related problem and struggling to work through it, they just don’t seem able to empathize with you at all.

Suggested read: 25 of the biggest dating deal breakers for women

8. Focusing solely on themselves

Has your partner been involved in anything that didn’t directly involve them? Have they ever helped someone just because, without any agenda or motive? If not, then you’re more than likely in a narcissistic relationship. Even if your partner does help somebody, it’s not out of the goodness of their heart, but because they are getting something in return.

9. Being picky about their friends

A classic sign of a narcissist is that they like to surround themselves with people who they think are worthy of being in their orbit. Also, their hand-picked, special friends might also look up to your partner, that is a great ego-booster for them.

10. Not handling a blow to their pride

couple disagreement_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

Nobody likes it when their pride is hit, or their ego is hurt. But narcissists can’t handle this at all, because underneath their supposed confidence, is a decidedly un-confident person. That’s one of the main reasons why they surround themselves with people who massage their ego. In a way, by trying to convince the world that they’re great, they are also trying to convince themselves that they are indeed that great.

11. Their pride harming your relationship

Have you ever had an argument with your partner because you stepped on their pride or hurt their ego? It might be as simple as you making a joke that they took offense to, or showing how you did something wrong. A narcissist can’t handle it when you inadvertently show them that they’re not as great as they think they are. Hence they lash out at you and cause a big yelling fest.

12. Taking things further than most

Adding to the previous point, does your partner take things further than you would? Do they threaten you with leaving if they don’t get their way? Do they always make you feel as if you did something wrong, and hence should apologize for your mistake? These are some of the classic signs of a narcissist and how they behave. From no angle is it healthy to make a person feel bad and wrong, when they clearly had nothing to feel bad and wrong about.

13. Not accepting responsibility for their actions

couple disagreeing_New_Love_Times

Image source: Shutterstock

More often than not, a narcissist is incapable of owning up to their mistakes and errors in judgment. They are so sure of themselves that they think that nothing is ever their fault. They manipulate the situation in any way they can to make sure that they avoid being blamed. The seriously scary part is that they themselves are unaware of what they’re doing, because they truly, genuinely believe that they are innocent.

14. Becoming volatile when challenged

couple arguing_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

Every relationship has its own share of ups and downs, including fights and arguments. But how bad do yours go? How easily do situations turn and become a full-blown fight? A narcissist can’t handle being shown their faults or that they’re in the wrong, as mentioned above. So they become volatile in the blink of an eye. Volatility doesn’t necessarily mean being violent, but they do tend to punch walls, or throw things when they feel like they might be losing the argument. Another scary thing is that once they’ve calmed down, they are able to justify their volatile actions and why they thought it was okay for them to behave like that.

15. Playing the victim

No matter who is at fault, your partner is always the victim. It is their inability to accept the fact that they’re not perfect that makes them act thus. They will go to any lengths to explain away their actions and justify why they did what they did. You may find their reasoning flawed, but they truly believe their own justifications.

Suggested read: 9 clear signs you’re in a dysfunctional relationship

16. Being controlling and demanding

A narcissist has a certain way of doing things that they think are the best. So if your partner tries to control what you do and how you do it, then odds are they are narcissistic.

If your partner identifies a few or more of the signs mentioned above, then there’s a good chance that you’re in a narcissistic relationship. Now it’s up to you to decide if you can or want to live with such a person for the foreseeable future, and on a long-term basis. The truth is, they won’t change themselves, so much as force you to change according to their ideas and whims. So you need to decide if you’re ready for that.

Featured image source: Quotesgram

Article Name
16 Clear Signs You're Stuck In A Narcissistic Relationship
Does your partner think they are perfect and that they know best how to do things? Beware, you may be stuck in a narcissistic relationship.
Chaitra Ramalingegowda

Chaitra Ramalingegowda

I fell in love with storytelling long before I knew what it was. Love well written stories, writing with passion, baking lip-smacking-finger-licking chocolate cakes, engaging movies, and home-cooked food. A true work-in-progress and a believer in the idiom 'all those who wander are not lost'. Twitter: @ChaitraRlg