Hindsight is A Wonderful Thing
Living with a narcissist is difficult to identify until you look at it with hindsight.
Narcissists only care about themselves and who stop at nothing to get exactly what they want. As a result, they will always place their own needs, desires, and emotions above anyone else’s, including yours. Furthermore when making decisions they won’t think twice about using people for their own advantage. They constantly pursue personal power and success which is why they’re so manipulative, deceitful, and bad to be around (see my post TOXIC RELATIONSHIPS)
Here are 7 ways in which narcissists manipulate and use others to their advantage:
They Play the Victim.
Narcissists constantly play mind games and pretend to be a victim (see WHY I AM DOING THIS). This way they get more attention (see WHY DOES SHE NEED TO SPEAK TO MY FAMILY?) and pity from others when they lead them to believe they are sick, in trouble, or need help. When you feel sorry for them you’re more likely want to help them out, and that’s exactly what they want. They also use this tactic as a way to justify or excuse their terrible behaviour. Also, by turning your focus away from all the negative, deceitful things they’ve done, they make you less guarded and therefore more open to even more manipulation on their end.
My ex felt it was necessary to constantly be in contact with my family, even after I had left. Unfortunately, my relationship with my father took a nose dive. However, on the flip side a more positive relationship was built with my son.
They Use Aggression and Intimidation.
One thing that all narcissists use is scare tactics. They employ everything from subtle, underhand threats to overt physical violence in order to bully others into giving in and bending to their will. More often than not the intimidation is psychological and emotional in nature. They might keep you from seeing family and friends or always put you down and verbally assault you because it makes them feel dominant and in control.
My ex often threatened to have me disposed of with the help of her ex (who incidentally she tried to have arrest for assaulting her (but it was never proved) – do you see a pattern here?
They Downplay Your Accomplishments.
When you first meet a narcissist they often hide their true colours (see BLOND HAIR). They build you up with positive comments just so they can tear you down later. When that happens it’s as if a switch gets suddenly flipped and all of those kind words go out the door. Once you feel devalued you find that you end up working twice as hard to regain their favour and please them.
They Guilt You Into Thinking Everything is Your Fault.
They blame you for all of their bad behaviour along with all of the trouble and repercussions it brings with it. No matter what the facts or situation may be, it’s inevitably your fault.
I constantly found that I was apologising for things that I had either never said or did. As a result, and over time, I used to thing that perhaps it was my fault. She tried to make me feel grateful for her help in identifying where my faults were. After all, she was quick to identify that I was a poor father and she had had better previously relationships.
They Only Talk About Themselves.
They have nothing good to say about anything else and can drone on endlessly about themselves.
Throughout my relationship with my ex she often reminded me at how she could get any man eating out of her hand and often gloated about her achievements with members of the opposite sex. She made it quite clear that her blonde hair and blue eyes could help her get away with anything.
They Use Triangulation.
This is when a narcissist, you, and one other person are all involved in a triangular mind game. The other person is brought in by the narcissist after they have been led to believe that you are in the wrong or the problem. Basically, by pitting you and a third party against each other the heat is taken off the narcissist, as is any blame, and they get off scot-free. The other person will also stand up for and support them and this feeds right into their need to be liked and perceived as right all the time.
This was her favourite trick. She was very clever at using her daughters against me. She had previously brought them up to be anti-man following the split from their father. Her daughters re-enforced the silent treatments and manipulations that went on at home. In effect, it could be argued that this was abuse of her daughters as they were not allowed to have their own thoughts. Furthermore, her charms had worked on my father. As previously stated, my relationship with my father has, in effect, come to an end because of her lies and manipulation. However, it must be said that I feel my father had a weak character anyway.
They Will Never Change.
Once a narcissist, always a narcissist. They will continue to act shallow, manipulate, and deceitful. Their issues are deep rooted and ingrained in their personalities. Even after you’ve removed them from your life, they will simply move on to their next unsuspecting victim and start ruining their life.
Escape From The Relationship
As often said, hindsight is a wonderful thing. It is wrong to blame yourself for the position that you found yourself in. This is important because their long shadow must come to an end. You were the victim not them. Remember to keep a record of everything that has happened or is happening – this is invaluable