Being in a relationship with a narcissistic individual means being with someone that is incapable of loving and feeling empathy. Someone who thinks that their needs, feelings, and desires are more important than yours. Someone that will stop at nothing to feed their ego and stroke their false sense of superiority, even if that means hurting you and damaging your self-esteem.
So, if you’re in a relationship with a narcissist and you want to protect yourself from the pain and emotional damage that they can inflict on you, make sure you know the following 7 things:
1. Know that the way your narcissistic partner treats you doesn’t define your worth.
Just because they’ve made you feel like you’re weak, insecure, and incompetent and like nothing you do is ever good enough countless times, it doesn’t mean that this is true. Just because they’ve criticized you for your flaws countless times, it doesn’t mean that you’re unimportant and unworthy of love.
What you need to understand is that a narcissist will always try to put you down and undermine your talents and successes because this is how they feed their ego and make themselves feel and look better than you and superior to you.
2. Know that it’s not your fault.
How many times has your narcissistic partner told you that you are “too sensitive,” “needy,” “weak,” or “insecure?” How many times have they told you that you’re incompetent and that whatever you’ve achieved in your life is unimportant?
How many times have they made you feel like you don’t deserve to be treated with kindness, respect, and dignity? How many times have they made you feel like you’re not worthy of love?
Let me tell you something: Nothing of this is true. Because you’ve been told these things and made to feel these ways by someone who is incapable of loving and feeling empathy and compassion. Someone who is incapable of feeling deeply the way you do. Someone who feels insecure and doesn’t love themselves.
3. Know that you can always rely on your support network.
Don’t be ashamed or afraid to tell your family and friends what you’re going through. Because these are the people who genuinely love you, care about you, and want you to be happy. These are the people who know your soul, your innermost feelings, and your greatest fears and insecurities.
Your loved ones are the people who know what to tell you to comfort you and help you solve your problems. They are the people who will never leave you to deal with your worries and pain on your own.
4. Know that you have the right to set clear, fixed boundaries.
This may take time, but your narcissistic partner has to know what behaviors you will and won’t put up with. They also have to know the consequences of overstepping or violating those boundaries. For instance, if the narcissist insults you in front of your friends and family, tell them that you’re not going to invite them to join you the next time you and your loved ones go out.
5. Know that you don’t owe anyone your energy and time.
Being in a relationship with a narcissist takes a significant amount of energy, and you need to invest a great part of this energy in yourself as well as your relationships with others.
So, never allow your narcissistic partner to drain your energy and make you feel emotionally and mentally exhausted. And remember – taking time for yourself doesn’t mean that you’re selfish – it means you love, respect, and care about yourself.
6. Know that you should never allow anyone to suck the happiness out of your life.
Narcissistic individuals can be very draining and negative, and they can suck the happiness out of you.
So, to prevent this, try to do something that fills your heart with joy and satisfaction every day. Whether it’s watching movies, listening to music, walking in nature, cycling, cooking, or hanging around with your friends, make sure you do what makes you feel relaxed and happy every day.
7. Know that you should never stop being good to yourself.
Regardless of the way the narcissist has been treating you, you should never stop treating yourself with kindness, patience, and compassion. You should never stop treating yourself with respect and dignity. You should never forget the importance of self-love. And last but not least, you should never blame yourself for the things you couldn’t see before and for hoping that the narcissist will change.