People with narcissistic personality disorder seek attention from -and use- others in order to build up and strengthen their ego. Rules only apply to others. People with NPS have very little understanding of others and are mainly concerned with how they can benefit themselves. They often manage to get others to do things for them and can always justify their inappropriate behavior. This works for them until they are met with resistance. They don’t handle criticism well, which is evident in the tense silence or rage that can arise when they’re opposed or stood up to. Their ability to genuinely respond to another’s emotions is very limited.
However, they are very good at pretending to be cooperative for a short time. When dealing with someone with NPS, you will eventually begin to ask yourself whether your needs are of any importance at all. No matter what you do or say, the narcissist will always tell you you’re wrong; you’re either making too much of something or not enough. In any case, you will never be able to do anything right.
What makes people with NPD so interesting?
Most likely, they first place you on a pedestal. For most people a uncomfortable and ingenuine place to be. Right there’s your first warning! Then you gradually come to realize that it was done simply to provide them with positive or negative attention or reaction, the so-called narcissistic supply. People with NPD can be very interesting, but are particularly good at acting interesting. At a certain point, you feel that you are being used by these people. They are generally people who like to hear themselves talk. Their best friends are those who give them affirmation.
Characteristics that apply to people with NPD can be: manipulative, domineering, self-indulgent, dismissive, oversensitive, playing the victim, egotistical, dishonest, unfaithful, criminal/immoral behavior, expectations/demands that you must always conform to and sending mixed messages.
All while camouflaging the true self behind a charming facade. The ways this is done might include: showing interest, putting on a show just for you, going through a lot trouble for you, offering help and being extremely understanding. By doing these things the narcissist presents a false reality full of promises and desires that will never be fulfilled.
Your inner voice will try to warn you when something’s off, listen to it and best keep your distance.
Written by: Natasja Paskas, certified therapist.