New Delhi: A narcissist is someone who despises modesty and celebrates vanity. Everything is an inflated and unrealistic mirror of self in narcissism. Every narcissist sees themselves as Godlike, and their deep-seated anxieties and insecurities are obscured by the false notion that they are unique.
The two foundations of narcissism are malignant self-obsession and self-centeredness, in which a person is unconcerned about the wishes, needs, or interests of others. This type of behaviour is associated with personality problems, according to psychologists. The name was derived from the Greek mythology narrative of Narcissus, a child who fell in love with his own reflection, which dates back to at least 8 A.D. This tale was offered by Sigmund Freud as a representation of a self-absorbed person.
Exaggerated ambition, grandiose fantasy, sentiments of entitlement, and exhibitionism have all been used by psychoanalysts and thinkers throughout history to boost a narcissist's self-esteem.
Narcissist a good partner?
On paper, narcissists often have it all - a fantastic career, money, success, and attractiveness. All of these awe-inspiring outward features are said to be important in a long-term partner. However, you should discard this preconceived view because fantasising about such a companion can lead to you being on the wrong side of the story. When you're in a relationship with a narcissist, the dynamics shift more subtly. At first, a narcissist begins "love bombing" - you are showered with constant texts, presents, and compliments, and they exhibit generosity to the core, but it's always about their own gains on the other side of the coin.
They try to control you by withholding your affection and attention. As your relationship with a narcissist spouse progresses, you'll notice some mysterious characteristics and be disillusioned by their sudden change in behaviour. It may come as a shock to you because you had no idea that the charismatic charmer with whom you fell in love had narcissistic personality traits at first. In most cases, the relationship deteriorates and the toxicity level rises.
You might be wondering whether a narcissist can be a decent companion. Unfortunately, "no" is virtually always the response. Because they are self-serving and feel no remorse when they damage their relationship, narcissism is a difficult tendency to change, and this trait makes them difficult to be around.
But what if you're already in a relationship with one? If you find yourself justifying your partner's toxicity and conduct, you are most likely in a narcissistic relationship. You must seek for these undeniable signals that can assist you in uncovering your partner's hidden personality.
These 5 signs should help your spot the red flags:
Take control of the conversation- Although relationships are two-way streets, people have a tendency to guide the conversation back to themselves. They enjoy being the centre of attention and commanding the conversation's focus. They don't pay attention to their partners and are prone to interrupting them in the middle of a conversation to share their own points of view or altogether changing the topic of the conversation, which is heavily focused on them.
Lack of empathy- Narcissism is characterised by a lack of empathy. There is no genuine affection or love. It may be difficult to catch their attention and have them care about your feelings and wants. The urge for self-protection makes narcissists weak, and this builds a barrier between them and their relationship. They lack true compassion when it comes to recognising and considering their partner's sentiments.
They Gaslight you - A narcissist uses this method to deceive their partner's perspective of reality. Gaslighting is a type of narcissism in which the person focuses on gaining power over their relationship. Being in a relationship with a narcissist might make you feel insecure, and you may find yourself apologising for things you haven't done.
Superiority complex- A superiority complex is a narcissist's overinflated ego combined with a drive to disparage or undermine others in order to make oneself feel better. A narcissist will be unconcerned about other people's sentiments. It's a tell-tale sign that your partner is a narcissist if they begin to feel, behave, and speak as though they're superior to you.
(Upassna B Singh is a Life Coach and Mentor)