Friends with a Narcissist?

It’s Narcissist Friday!

 I have written some about friendships with narcissists before, but it seems appropriate to chime in with a little more here since I have been writing about friendships with legalists over the past week. 

There isn’t as much written about narcissistic friendships because the assumption is that you can simply walk away from them.  It isn’t like being married or born into a family or even stuck with one at work.  But this seems to ignore the way narcissists connect with people.

Narcissists need friends.  There may be some separated narcissists who prefer to live away from all others, but those would be aberrant.  Normally, narcissists try to surround themselves with people who will give them adoration, service, or opportunity.  You don’t get a lot of attention all by yourself.

So, generally, narcissists develop a personality that is outgoing, welcoming, and friendly.  Some of the strongest narcissists I have known are very friendly people, willing to connect with almost anyone.  It is this friendliness that many people see first and some never see anything else from the narcissist.  That’s why they have a hard time believing the negative things narcissists are accused of.

But sometimes narcissists are able to trap people into what appeared to be a friendship at first and then became an abusive relationship.  These victims are abused and manipulated and find it very difficult to escape.  Why?  Because the narcissist knows their secrets and knows how to twist their emotions.  Just like the husband/boyfriend abuser who is able to lure his victim back for more, the narcissist presents himself/herself in friendships as repentant, hurt, and needy.  He is also able to subvert other friendships so that the victim is seen as the abuser or at least as the cause of the problems.

So what do you do if you feel trapped in this kind of friendship?  Obviously, get out if you can.  Pay the price and be free.  Let her tell what she needs to tell about you.  Let him separate you from other friends who will believe his lies.  Just get out.

I understand that there are times when this seems impossible.  So begin by setting small boundaries.  Say no more often.  Don’t be as available.  Learn to barter your time and energy with the narcissist.  If he wants you to do something for him, require him to do something for you.  The more you can keep to this kind of relationship, the more you will find him distancing himself from you.  When you become a burden, in any way, he will focus on someone else and you may be free.  There are ways to play the narcissist’s game against him.

And be thankful that your only relationship is as a friend.  Some people are married to these folks!

I would be very interested in hearing your story, particularly if you solved the situation.  I know others would be interested as well!

 

158 Comments

Filed under Narcissism, Relationship

158 responses to “Friends with a Narcissist?

  1. Kelly

    I was in a very close friendship with a manipulative narcissist. When I met her she was SOOOO sweet, charming, friendly and lovely. That friendship lasted 10 years. As it progressed I noticed she wanted me to do more and more for her. She has a large family and is/was part of a particular group that adhered to homeschool/seminar etc. She wanted me to be available to her at all times to “talk” or help her with her children to babysit (I had no children) I was blessing myself and her you see…being her side kick. I began to notice she would get quite angry if ANYthing crossed her self esteem, I mean she went ballistic. If anyone dissed her kids…same thing. It was so over the top. She had quite a nasty ugly undercurrent in her life of gossip/slander and putdowns for people she perceived better than herself. I was shocked at this sweet little homemaker and how ugly she could get. She put NOTHING into the friendship it was very one sided and I kept doing it because I was married to an NPD at the time and had been raised by NPD’s so that’s what I do (or did…I don’t Now !) I felt like I was being drained by an emotional vampireress. I really became bitter and wanted out, but I felt like I was entangled big time. She knew how to work guilt well. FINALLY , I had a last straw incident where she hung up on me because I wouldn’t go to Sams club with her. I was so steamed. I finally got ahold of her the next day and said “I am sorry to tell you this, but I cannot be in a relationship with you anymore. It is damaging me and I need to walk away, I wish you the best in your life, good bye.” That was in 2006 and she is still not speaking to me…when I run into her she is condescending and has a nasty tone. I have some fond memories of that season, but it became a learning experience for me that I have never forgotten. I don’t do NPD’s.

    • Maybe part of the lesson here for all of us is that it is easier to separate from these people than we realize. Once you actually stand up for yourself, they don’t want you anymore. Yes, they will probably bad mouth you, but they are probably already doing that. At least they won’t be able to use you anymore.

      And do they actually think they are punishing us when they refuse to acknowledge us or talk with us at the store? I am usually quite thankful for the opportunity to avoid them!

      I talked this over with an older pastor one time. Like me, he had people turn against him in his church and begin to say and do cruel things. Then, he would see them and they would act as though he was a long lost friend. He said that he had to be true to his own heart. He was not their friend and they were not his friends. Being gushy and lovey was a lie. So he simply acknowledged them and turned away to someone else. He was gentle, but absolutely firm. He was not going to treat them as friends.

      I found some freedom and affirmation in that. No, I won’t open myself to them again. Yes, I care about their kids and all, but I am no longer their pastor or their friend. So I care about them in the same way I care about anyone I don’t know (or know well enough not to trust).

  2. My friend is a narcissist, (at least I think so) and he doesn’t know it. Our relationship as friends can be quite destructive especially if he just keeps his pride up and focuses on his agenda to being better. He also doesn’t seem to extend grace a lot, he wouldn’t understand. And now he even labels me as a hypocrite.

    • Watch out for the twisting and manipulation. Once you understand what you are dealing with and begin to step back a little, he may well become vindictive. On the other hand, that will be your confirmation that this is not a normal relationship with a normal person. Keep me posted.

  3. Faith

    Yes, when setting boundaries, get ready for a nasty response. This can include all modes of communication.
    I struggled for a while with how to respond to public “friendliness” and ” good will” from a my narcissist ex ( In front of our children and their friends) My marriage included threats of violence that continued covertly after divorce ….until God gave me the wisdom to keep my distance. Public image is a priority so this was led to retaliation..ours was to be a ” friendly divorce” despite muttered threats and constant private harassment.
    So, I am now the threatening person…yelling and abusive. My exs extended family want me to resume phone conversations so the slander can continue. I had stopped these ( texting only) after one was used to slander me…claiming to the audience at the time of the call that I was yelling/threatening. Even a harmless text comment by me has been twisted into a threat…I now only text facts and only if absolutely necessary.
    God fearing, honest people are not equipped to play these manipulative games. All I can do now is “have nothing to do with them”. And I will wait patiently for the Lord to reveal truth to those who can hear it. He will.

  4. Faith

    After reading my comment, I need to clarify that I am now being falsely accused of threats and yelling. This is slander and the only way to stop it is to avoid contact…

  5. laraine

    I had a friendship with an abusive narcissist back in high school. On the surface, she is a very funny, charming, and likable individual. People who only know her for her surface act, think she is the most wonderful person they’ve ever met. It was very hard getting other people to understand the abuse she put me through. She owns a store here in town and if you google her business info, you will get 2 types of reviews: people that absolutely love her & think she is the greatest and those who see through her & vow never to darken her doorstep again-nothing in-between. People either love her or hate her.

  6. Paul

    How wonderful to read this article and the comments people have left here.

    I also have had an encounter with a NPD. I recently ended a 20 year old friendship with a narcissist and it was a painful process to go through.

    We had a little dispute at one time, because, we`ll he`s an arrogant narcissist. We didn`t speak for 3 years since I knew talking to him wouldn`t do any good and he`s the most stubborn and proud guy in the world. However he tracked me down one night out on town and took me aside to talk. He said he wanted to do all the talking and I knew that was a bad sign. I got stuck with this guy the rest of the evening and he talked and talked about a wide variety of matters, sort of passively teaching me about life, but never wanting to talk about actual details about our dispute and what had happened. There he would have no defense. In the end though he told me this was my last chance to be his friend and that he wanted a full apology and that I admit he didn`t do anything wrong at all. I naturally refused to do that.

    Some days later he wrote an email speculating I`m envious of him and therefore I got a problem with him. His was also an alpha male and proud to have crushed numerous people over the years who`ve been envious towards him, just like me.

    FYI he uses weight lifting and gangsta rap to boost his self esteem and image and he also thinks he`s very special and is hypersensitive to imagined insults.

    I wrote back an email and I said all I really thought about him because he seemed to want all cards on the table.

    He then left 10 missed calls on my phone, sent some abusive texts, and 3 long and unbelievably vicious emails. I nearly got a panic attack.

    It upset me because most of it was totally uncalled for, but now I`m happy he`s out of my life for good and I don`t look back.

  7. McGee

    Hello, and thank you for the informative article. I have been friends with such a person for about fiteen years. In the last five, I have established some necessary distance between us, which, needless to say, has not gone over well. I would completely walk away at this point except that I am the godmother of this person’s child, and I care very much about my godchild. Have you any advice on how to best navigate this situation? Thanks!

    • Welcome! I apologize for taking so long to reply. You understand the reality of the situation. You will have to play the game to a certain extent to get what you want. On the other hand, the narcissist also has to play to get what he/she wants. If you cannot establish yourself as a person in the narcissist’s eyes (an almost impossible task) then you can at least establish yourself as a “force to be reckoned with.” What does the narcissist want from you? Are you willing to give something of that to get time with your godchild?

      You see, by doing this, you are establishing boundaries. Boundaries define the relationship, they don’t prohibit it. You can have a relationship with this person on your terms. Even if he/she has control over what you want, negotiation is possible that doesn’t compromise who you are. Don’t expect the narcissist to play fair, but they do understand the game.

      It may be that you have already reached the best place in your relationship if you are able to have contact with your godchild and still maintain necessary distance. Giving of yourself is not the same as losing yourself. As long as you choose to give, you are in control.

    • Smith

      That’s funny I’m going through the same thing only the opposite. My ex BFF is a narcissist and we’ve been friends for about 12 years. After my son was born she dropped me probably because I wasn’t available as much as she is very high maintenance, demanding and needy. But we reconnected 5 years later and I forgave her because I thought she might have been upset I had a child as we were married around the same time. Looking back I just wasn’t able to dote on her anymore so she dumped me. Anyway we became friends again and she was so sweet at first and I made her godmother to my child. But during that time she would come over and behave really badly like staying for dinner then calling her husband and finding out what he was cooking then tell me she’d stay because my meal sounded better (after she’d already agreed to stay and I was cooking it) or trying to get me to carry her stuff or competing with me. Like we put in a pool last summer and she promptly told me she joined a gym that had a pool that was bigger than mine and she could use it all the time and not have to clean it or I told her I wish my town had a Starbucks and she would constantly tell me her town had 5 and email me from them. Things like that. She had great taste too but every gift she got me looked like she was regifting an ugly gift from someone else. I would spend ages picking out the perfect gift like a top she’d wear over and over and she’d get me a cheap plastic pearl bracelet or doily scarf when I have the same modern taste as her. Anyway there are a thousand other things like this to say but the worst one was that she would make elaborate plans with me then cancel them. This last year was the worst. My friends and I called her the cancelling friend and they’d ask me did your cancelling friend cancel today? And 9 times out of 10 I’d say yes. So I really don’t want her to be my child’s godmother anymore. I won’t call her again as at my age I just don’t need any more takers in my life. I want friendships that are give and take and no more jeolousy or competitiveness. So if you aren’t great friends with your child’s godmother just let them go. Maybe they want out anyway. Cheers

    • Claire

      McGee I am in the exact same position! My husband and I are godparents to a child whose mother I can’t stand to be around anymore because of her narcissism. I started to distance myself from her and she completely flipped out at me, saying that I didn’t care about my godchild. She then went around telling all our friends that It was ‘our loss’ and how ‘sad’ it was that we didn’t want to be in the child’s life (which isn’t true, we just wanted some boundaries like a healthy adult relationship). she is also one of those people who never sees fault with herself, it’s always everyone else. I found the easiest way was so just stay friends, but in moderation. Thankfully she moved a few hours away from us so the 3 or 4 times a year I have to see her is manageable. I try and keep in contact
      Via SMS so it’s not so draining. I just ask for photos of the child ect and she still knows I ‘care’, which keeps us both happy.

  8. Missy

    O M G .Sounds like my hubby. This explains it!. I believe he has NPD. He has lots of friends and always loved the admiration he got from them. On the surface, they would see a nice,helpful person. I knew I could not tell his friends how he really act because they would not believe it. He does not mess with me anymore. I send him articles about this to let him know, I know there is something wrong with him. He told me he does not empathize and does not have time for it! And that he knows he not a good person. He would make it seem to his friends that I was the problem, and I was not .

  9. meme

    Help! I’m the middle of it all. NPD is my husband friend for 10 years, who became a godfather to my son. I try to separate myself but this NPD start telling bad things about me. My husband look at this NPD like god and couldn’t see the Narcissist he is!!! I don’t want my kids to be growing next to him…

    • You are in a tough situation! The thought that goes through my head is that your problem is with your husband. He may be deceived by the narcissist, but you and the kids pay the price. Can you get him to listen to you without bringing in the narcissist? You may have to take some serious action. Is there a shelter or another place you and the kids could go? You should be gathering resources and authorities to support you if this gets worse.

      The two of you should find some good counseling. If your husband won’t go with you, maybe you can find something for yourself. This sounds like it is intense for you. I will be praying…

  10. Patty

    Hello, I found your blog today as I am struggling with a relatively new friend who I thought was the beginnings of a true long lasting friendship. She came into my life shortly before I had a huge medical crisis and was very supportive and loving to me. We shared so many great moments and it’s been a year of amazing connection, laughter, tears and sharing our lives. There were little signs along the way that I guess I choose to ignore, like her huge network of friends, literally hundreds, the need for her to connect with strangers daily, personality traits of being charismatic, outgoing, funny, a partier, etc. People either love or hate her and she acts like she is tough as nails, not caring what other people think. She seems to live her life as a walking contradiction in so many ways and has been pulling away from our friendship recently. I reached out to invite her to lunch and she unloaded a huge string of comments that I had made to her in casual conversation that she said were damaging to her? I felt completely blindsided and have never said ANYTHING to her with ill will or malice or with the intention of being mean. The comments were joking lightly, casual speak, nothing serious or even damaging. You can imagine the shock and surprise as this is the reason she began pulling away from our friendship. Now I am not an overly complimentary person and the only thing I can think of is, I was not meeting her needs or feeding her narcissism so she found the tiniest of comments and became “hurt” by them. I’m really trying to rectify if this is a true friendship and feel like my friendship barometer is broken. I don’t want to be abused or manipulated as I grew up with a Narsisstic mother and am totally done on that. I guess I just didn’t see this one coming given the outward helpfulness she offered me during my health crisis and the continued helping of others in their time of need that I thought was admirable?? I am feeling like if I don’t comb through every little comment, do what she asks or requests that she will drop the relationship like a hot potato. I thought narcissist were simply takers so I was fooled. Any thoughts or suggestions would be appreciated?

    • Hi Patty!
      Some narcissists are predators, hunting for those who are weakened so they can use them. It sounds like that’s what happened to you. By only hearing your side of this, it is hard to be sure of anything. I have experienced this kind of twist in relationships myself and sometimes it is just that the people need to pull away. Perhaps there is something in her that makes her keep relationships at a level that is much lower than you appreciate. She might be someone who is very kind and helpful, but still distant. That could account for her having many friends.
      At the same time, you make an interesting point. Narcissists are takers, but some of them understand that they have to pay for what they take. What I mean is that they are willing to give and be generous for the sake of connecting with you or for making you dependent on them. If you fail to meet their needs, they may push you away or punish you within the relationship.
      Either way, it seems that you have to simply let her go. If this is what she wants because she is frightened or burdened by close relationship, then you have to respect her enough to let her go. If, on the other hand, she was trying to buy your friendship and loyalty by her kindness and dumps you because the “investment” didn’t come through, then you still should let her go. She would only hurt you more.
      We do learn from these experiences, I suppose. Just don’t begin to believe that all people are like this. They aren’t. There are real friends out there and they may be people you don’t expect.

      • Patty

        Thanks so very much for your direct and valuable assessment. I have since pulled way back in the relationship. Unfortunately, I held my tail between my legs during the acquisition lunch and apologized for her “hurt” feelings. Wish I hadn’t done that!! But she has continued to stay in touch, not as much or incessant as before and I am just keeping her at arms length with my wall of protection way up. I actually feel sorry for her because she is totally un self aware and has no clue the issues she saw in me were really a mirror. Finally, I’ve learned to keep a safe distance from these types of people. I know now that I’m attracted to them because I never healed the relationship with my Narsissitic mother and being with a similar personality that shows me any love or concern or “crumbs” in a weird way feels addictive and like oxygen. Thanks for your advice and 50,000 foot view, I’m lucky to be learning this whole lesson finally during mid-life, ha, ha, ha.
        All the best and keep up the blog for you are helping so many of us wayward souls out there.

    • Suzanna

      As having experienced a ‘close’ friendship with a narcissist, whom I considered extended family (a relationship that lasted for app 12 years) I have a note for the above commentm, Patty : Believe in your good intentions, be aware that a narcissitic trap often includes getting the other person to question themselves. It creates an open door into more control and manipulation. I am not saying that you didn’t hurt your narcissist friend (afterall, I wasn’t there, and even if I had been, who am I to judge) – and please do remain healthily questioning of yourself (a sign of staying non-narcissistic), however, chances are that it’s just the game-player within the person, capitalising on your self-questioning ability. Know yourself, don’t be a push-over (meant in a kind way)!

  11. Fantastic article! My predicament is a bit different, and I’m just now finally beginning to drag myself out of it. I just started law school in a totally new place late last summer. I made a lot of new friends, which was a pleasant surprise, but one friend became extremely close to me extremely quickly. She was the “edgy” girl in the class. She had tons of tattoos, didn’t care what anyone thought about her (or so she claimed), and was very open about her sexual experiences. Basically she was this free spirit, and I had always been rather repressed, so I immediately became infatuated with her. We became absolutely inseparable. We would talk everyday whether in person or over text. She was always there for me – asking if I wanted her to come take care of me if I got sick in the middle of the night or becoming viciously protective if someone else upset me. Of course there were warning signs: she loved talking about herself, she confided secrets in me about how she hurt others (like sleeping with our mutual friend’s bf). Yet I somehow decided that I should be loyal to her as my best friend in a new and scary place, and I took her confiding in me as a massive compliment. She was also someone who always spoke her mind, which could lead to slightly meaner comments, but it was never anything that would offend me. I should say that I have always been a very strong person, with thick skin, and I never thought I would be a doormat for anyone. So even though I found myself already going out of my way for this girl all the time, I thought it was fine because she did the same for me.

    About 4 months later, things started to change drastically. I had been pretty stressfree during first semester and never really needed anything from her. So it was easy for her to offer because I would never actually ask for anything. Now things started changing because I became stressed about school, had certain issues back home (grandma had a stroke), and just basic problems that I would expect a good friend to help me through (in the same way I had helped her through her various struggles even when it was inconvenient for me). I noticed that now when I needed her, she was always busy, or “too down from my own panic attacks to have time for you.” She told me she didn’t want to “accomodate co-dependent behavior” and hurtful things like that. Initially I just took this as her usual way of speaking her mind. She’s about 4.5 years older than me so I thought maybe this is just what adult friendships were like and I was naive or overly sensitive. It didn’t help that she would use words like “needy” or “clingy” to describe me. I am ashamed to say that I never stood up for myself and always just nodded my head and found new ways to apologize. If I said something she didn’t like, she would sit staring at me in silence while I rambled through an apology, and then she would lay the hammer down with something like “you’re not being fair to me, and if you continue doing this, I’ll be very angry.”

    The old me would have hightailed it out of that friendship right then and there. But I had changed. I had extreme exhaustion from the first semester of school, and I loved my friend and never thought this would happen. She had always told me that I was like a sister to her, unlike anyone she had met here. And now she would be curt with me, and tell me I expected too much from her when I asked her to hang out because she was always “busy.” Yet she would not only hang out with other people (mostly men she wanted to sleep with), but she would also tell me about their time together which felt like she was rubbing it in my face. I admit that the more distant she got, the more I panicked and the more I would push for us to spend time together because I was terrified that I would lose her completely. This continued until about a month ago. We then had a long, 4 hour phone conversation where she acknowledged she had been awful but, somehow, I was the one that ended up crying and apologizing. We set out terms of communication to avoid any further misunderstandings and said we would work everything out. I was just so happy that I plunged back into the friendship and forgave everything.

    For 2 weeks, she went out of her way to be nice to me again. Everything was like it was before. I was happy but I actually regained my senses a little bit and kept my guard up knowing that things might change again. And they did.

    2-3 weeks ago she was in a really bad mood. She became stressed over the usual things – things that we all go through as students. She also started going on a ton of dates after joining a dating website, so she no longer had time to study with me or talk in the evenings. Her whole life pretty much revolved around her romantic dalliances and “being grumpy”. For the first time, I didn’t dump my own obligations to help her, and everything went into a downward spiral. She started being even meaner to me in person. The things she said were truly horrible. So I actually just assumed that maybe she simply didn’t like me at all anymore, and though it hurt, I thought I should let her go. I can’t force someone to be friends with me. We tried. We failed. Maybe it was my fault. Those were my thoughts.

    So I started to give her a ton of space. I stopped hanging out with some of our mutual friends knowing she would be there. Of course there was self-interest in this because I also didn’t want to feel sad from interactions with her. But nonetheless, I figured this would make her happy. But not so fast! The more distance I give her, the meaner she is when we ARE around each other. Of course I’m more sensitive than normal now but it’s a reaction to her behavior.

    Anyway, I apologize for the incredibly long message but I really need help. I’m finally trying to end this friendship. But she won’t let me it seems. And it’s already hard enough to force myself to do it. The more I let go, the more she goes out of her way to hurt me. And I AM hurt. I’m mad at myself for being sad about her but I can’t help it. Am I doing the right thing and how can I be better about prioritizing myself? Thank you ever so much for your help!

    • You are right. Your situation is a “bit different.” But much the same also. Narcissists are usually fascinating people. They are very attractive in subtle ways. There is something about their apparent superiority, their ability to stay separate from entanglements, even their cruelty. Add to that their willingness to do whatever it takes to get the hook in us. They seem to know the right words to say and just when to say them. They sense our times of loneliness and weakness and they are there with everything we need.

      And then we owe them. After all, whatever they gave was just an investment. They expect to get much more back. Eventually, they stop investing in us and just take. And take. And take.

      Most narcissists want to be just like everyone else, but better. Their image can’t be that different or people won’t connect with them. Your narcissist decided somewhere along the line that rebellion and wildness was what everyone really wanted, so she became the best at it. Then she probably tries to connect with people who find that rebellion intriguing and exciting.

      So she continues to manipulate you. Why? What is the hold she has on you? Can she reveal a secret of which you are afraid? Does she pull on your heartstrings in some way? Once you figure that out and count the cost of letting it go, you will be free.

      The bottom line is that you will feel this way until you let her go and you will feel rotten for a while after. That’s the result of whatever she tweaked in your heart. But you will get through it. For your own health, you will simply forgive her and move on. You don’t owe her anything. All her nastiness settled any debt. You don’t need to hate her or even dislike her. You just won’t spend time with her again (or trust her!)

      I hope you were able to read my latest NF post about why Ns are so mean. Let me know what you think.

      • Thank you so very much for your response! Fortunately, there are really no secrets about me that I would be afraid for her to reveal – at least nothing to make it worth maintaining the friendship. The truth is that I know far too many of her secrets (I was a great outlet for her), so sometimes I think she tries to maintain some kind of relationship with me solely to ensure I won’t tell. Of course, I would never tell someone’s secrets as revenge, but I suppose she doesn’t know that.

        You’re right, even though I’ve decided to let her go, I feel really lousy. I value my friendships immensely, especially ones that become so close, so I am devastated. But I am determined to remove myself from her grasp. Thank you again.

      • cara

        Wow, this is so similar to what I am going through right now. Thank you for posting. I wish I had found this site a long time ago.

    • prodigalkatherine

      It seems to me that the individual you are describing is closer to a sociopath than a narcissist. Be careful.

      • I also have a friend like this. I had to get therapy because it was the same pattern as an abusive boyfriend only in girl form. It took along time to see it and I get the same panic attacks as I did when my ex would leave 30 missed calls in an hour.. 😦 Trying to make space and break up now.

  12. Anonymous

    Hi,
    I realize I’m a bit late to this conversation, but I just stumbled across this article: I’m happy I did 
    I have a friend whom I believe has NPD. I’m about to cut off the friendship, but I’m having trouble knowing how and when to do it.

    He is married and has been for almost 20 years and has recently confessed to having many affairs over the years. This is difficult for a lot of reasons. I hurt for his wife, she’s also my friend and I am going to support her fully.

    But I have a dilemma: hindsight is bringing me clarity, and it’s painful.

    He was in leadership at the church I attended when I first became a Christian. He was the one in the church who ‘spoke into my life’ on a regular basis. At first I welcomed the ‘help’, but it wasn’t long before I realized something was wrong.
    I tried to pull away and think for myself- I was determined I could hear God for myself. This did not go well with my Narcissistic friend.
    To make a long story short, my experience at that church became intolerable. I found myself being treated as though I were a harlot or something, leadership didn’t trust me. It turns out, he had been feeding leadership stories about my sex life (When I didn’t actually have one) people were convince this man and his wife (though he always did the talking) were best suited to help me in my early Christian walk, so why would they doubt him?
    I found myself unable to confront. It just seemed so crazy. I felt crazy. I ‘let it go’ ‘forgave’ and ‘moved on’.

    So, all those years he was having sex with people who were not his wife. Now that things are out in the open, I’m hit with a sense of utter betrayal. One of the ways he kept people from seeing what was going on in his life-was to talk about someone else: and one of the subjects of gossip (dressed up as ‘concern’) was me.
    That season affected my whole family. My kids, to this day, will not set foot in a church.

    Reality is hitting me: what felt crazy now seems to make perfect sense. The issue for me now is that I want to confront him. I’ve been reading a lot about NPD and so I’m aware that if I do, I cannot expect any kind of remorse or apology etc…I would have to do it for no other reason than to get some closure. But… how will this affect his wife? She’s devastated and the last thing I want to do is get honest with a friend, for my own healing, at the expense of another. Her heart is broken and she needs time to heal- she needs a lot of support right now.

    Here’s a question: What are the chances that confronting the Narcissistic husband will somehow harm the wife?
    (I do intend to ask her how she would feel about me talking with him about some things)
    Narcissists do tend to project and rage out when they feel threatened and if I’m not around to rage at… do you believe there’s a chance he would take out his frustration on his wife. They don’t live together at present, but they are in communication.
    Thoughts anyone?

    • I wrote the reply to the comment below and saw that I had not posted a reply to this one. Please accept my apologies! I suspect I wrote a response but didn’t post it for some reason.

      What you describe is something that happens more than anyone will admit in churches and religious organizations. I once visited a woman in the hospital who, I believe, died of bitterness because of a relationship much like you have had with a church leader. Her pastor was gentle and listened to her struggles and fears and won her heart. She found herself attached to him more than she expected. Then, when he betrayed her confidences and turned away from her, she was so damaged that she developed several serious stress related illnesses and could not recover.

      Pastors and church leaders often have a unique opportunity to connect with the hearts of their people, particularly women. They listen and care and are strong and wise and good. They seem safe. They are spiritual leaders and we are supposed to trust them.

      But let me tell you a secret: pastors know that this happens. They know that women can connect on a heart level and enter into a relationship easily, especially when they are hurting. And they know that an attentive and caring voice is sometimes just what a woman needs. And they know when they are stepping over a line. It doesn’t have to be a sexual relationship in order to be a strong one. Nor does it have to be sexual in order to be wrong.

      Narcissists use people almost instinctively. Imagine how powerful the narcissist can be as a pastor! People want to open up and tell their stories. They want someone who is strong and will care. They easily let their defenses down because they trust spiritual leaders.

      This man took advantage of you. I would guess that something similar happened in his relationships with the others, but it took a different track. I am glad that you didn’t open yourself to his sexual manipulations, but he still used you for his own gratification. Then he betrayed you.

      But you are healthy enough to see this and to begin to move past it. My advice, for what it’s worth, is to have nothing more to do with him. If you confront him you will almost certainly regret it, simply because these guys must win. You are right to realize that you will get no remorse or apology, but you will also get no satisfaction and, I suspect, no closure.

      There probably isn’t much more he can do to hurt his wife. She has had a special kind of pain and grief. At the same time, you will do more to discredit him by ministering to her than in any other way. He is already exposed in ways that are past what you would say. But she is also exposed and probably needs a friend. Whatever rage he has will be directed at her no matter what you do, I would guess. But love her and don’t add to her pain.

      Now, those are blunt thoughts. You don’t have to agree. I am glad that you sent this as anonymous. It makes it easier to be direct. Please know that I am praying for you. You are welcome to contact me directly by using the contact link. Hold your head up and trust the Lord who loves you.

  13. S

    I’ve been friends with a narcissist for 3 years now and I only for the past six months have I realised that this is what the problem was. For the first few years I felt like I could never been good enough of a friend, because he was never happy with me – except for the first few months. We met at work and after a few months started hanging out, and after that first honeymoon period of our friendship, he started critisizing me and verbally abusing me all the time for saying ‘stupid things’, having stupid opinons, letting people use me etc. I was constantly under stress because I felt that I was letting this person down, while he was guilt tripping me into staying in the friendship by saying that I am his closest and only friend and he needs my friendship. I started noticing that all the things we thought we ahd in common we actualy didn’t have in common, and I tried to end the friendship but I couldn’t because I had accumulated feelings of guilt for not liking this person anymore and him losing his closest friend. However, at the same time he could probably sense this and started to lose interest in our friendship, and I felt so betrayed and so heart-broken even though I wanted to end the friendship myself. I’ve since realised that I’m an empath, which is the worst combination with a narcissist.
    In the last six months I have moved away and we have been in contact, partially because of my addiction to this person and getting his approval – I think from a very large sense of guilt, and partially because he likes to keep me on the back burner and still know that in theory he has a close friend. But our messaging is anything but friendly, it is really dry and empty, and we have run into many fights over the past six months. I feel like the friendship is slowly dieing, yet I am still emotionally attached and feel extremely lonely knowing that this person may never contact me again.
    It’s very confusing and I know that I should just never speak to him again because he makes me feel so bad, and purposely puts me down, but it is so hard to accept this failed friendship – harder than with someone who isn’t a narcissist.

    • I think narcissistic friendships are weird. Because they don’t have the structure of marriage or family or work, these friendships seem to be in constant flux. I hear this regularly. At one time the relationship is very close, very dependent, almost intimate, and the next time the N is distant and uncaring. I suspect this is because the N must really play the game in a friendship.

      A dating relationship has certain expectations and can lead to commitment. A marriage is a firm commitment. Families are families and work is work. In these relationships it is much easier for the N to abuse because the victim/supply is stuck. It takes courage and willpower to break off the relationship. Most of the time, the N finds ways to drain the willpower away.

      But a friendship means that the N has to use his/her ability to manipulate a person’s thinking and emotions. The friend can simply walk away. So the N has to try to bind the friend using whatever weaknesses or openings the person reveals. This is why Ns often seem to easy to talk to. They learn your secrets. It is why some present themselves as victims in pain. They appeal to your compassion. Whatever it takes to break through your normal defenses and get you committed to them.

      Those of us on the outside look at a story like yours and wonder why you would ever continue such a relationship. It seems easy and obvious to us. But inside the relationship, the N has twisted your thinking and made you doubt yourself. The abuse you suffer is your own fault, you think. The difficulty of the connection is because of you, you think. This is the skill of the N, mind games.

      The answer is what you already know. Stop answering the texts. Let the relationship end. Prepare yourself for pleading, accusing, threatening, whatever. But the N will move on if you are costing more than he thinks he will get in return. You do not need the abuse or the confusion. Let the “friendship” die. You really won’t lose anything.

      Please feel free to write again, either here or privately. I do care.

    • Mary

      Hi 🙂 I don’t know if this applies to you, but it might be helpful to do some research on cults: I know sounds over the top, but the dynamics of cultic groups and this kind of ‘friendship’ are very similar. It’s as though a person can become our personal ‘guru’. He/she may not have a following, or an official position over a group of people, but I think it’s possible that the N. can see his/her circle of ‘friends’ as his/her following and will want control over the people in his/her life. Keeping people unbalanced and dependent emotionally. The ‘guru’ may not be in a place where he/she can access your money for a cause, but he/she can definitely draw on your time, emotions, attention etc… the key is ‘control’ and attention.
      There’s a lot of material about cult leaders and their followers, unfortunately, this kind of chaos and mind control can happen between two people, but it doesn’t look like a ‘Jonestown’ kind of thing, and much of the damage is internal, so it’s not considered in the same way.
      All that to say, I’ve found reading about cult dynamics very helpful in the journey toward freedom. It’s helping me discover where and how I let the Narcissist in my head and how to break free 🙂
      This might not apply to you at all, but I wanted to mention it, just in case it does 🙂

  14. Emily

    I have a dilemma. My old best friend is a narcissist, even though she appears to be a kind sweet person and many people in her wide circle of friends probably wouldn’t identify her as so. She is consumed completely by her own dramas; has very high expectations of her friends (it almost felt like being in a romantic relationship) but is herself not a very good friend (not showing or calling when plans have been made, missing her friends’ important life events with no explanation, no interest in other’s lives, etc.). I have pretty much cut her out of my life completely and only see her in social situations. We have close mutual friends, some of whom see her for what she is, but others who do not. My problem is this: how do I have the grace to be kind to her when I see her out? I always try to be nice, I am the type of person who hates hurting other people’s feelings. But she must know that I do not like her. When we do talk, many times she is condescending (which she was throughout our friendship) or even confrontational to me. (A friend said that she talks this way to me ‘like I’m a sister.’) I cannot confront back, I do not want to hurt her, she is human after all. How can I be kind?

    • Two thoughts. First, it sounds like you already have the grace to be kind and are trying. If she was an addict, you would know that feeding her addiction would not be kindness, no matter how much she would plead for it and exhibit her pain. As a narcissist, her addiction is your attention and energy. She will manipulate your heart to get it every bit as much as any other addict would. In fact, she will probably be better at that manipulation than most.

      Second, remember that her actions and attitudes are her problem, not yours. You have set up some boundaries and you have to keep them. If she is unkind or hurt, that’s too bad. Yes, you want to be kind, but kindness does not mean removing your boundaries. It probably just means being yourself. Keeping her outside your heart is hard for you because of who you are, but it has to be done because of who she is. Think of it this way: if you don’t keep her out of your heart, you will stop being who you are. The ultimate end of the victim/supply of the narcissist is to be nobody. Don’t be afraid or feel that it is wrong to protect yourself.

      • Emily

        Thank you for you insight and advice. This is my first time writing on anything like this, and it is comforting to know that you and others understand what I am going through.

  15. Marie

    I too want to thank you Pastor Orrison. I discovered your blog months ago when dealing with a difficult friend. I kept asking myself “what is wrong with her that she has to act this way?” so I went online in search of an answer. I came across the term narcissism and all the traits matched and it finally make some kind of sense (well at least I realized I was not crazy and that something really was wrong with her!). As the typical story seems to go … I tried to carefully establish some boundaries, which did not go over well, and I was quickly discarded, devalued and haven’t been spoken to in months. It hurts to be treated this way after many, many years of friendship. It is kind of a relief to have the pressure off, but we share the same small church and she has created alot of drama and division.
    I love your blog. I love your posts on Grace. It is all slowly sinking in – a kind of enlightenment. I am learning alot from you. Keep it up! You are helping heal alot of people. This is the first time I have ever commented, but I do look forward to reading your posts everyday.

  16. Rochell

    i was best friends with a narcissist and didnt know until it was over. looking back i wish i wouldve stayed away. why do we want them back in our lives when they hurt us so bad and they walk away as if nothing happened?

  17. john

    I was best friends with a narcissist and did not realize it until my life came to a sudden fall.I neglected my family by going out and bending over to every demand this guy made.At first I felt bad because he did not have a girlfriend or wife but this became more of a chore keeping his expectations up.The idea of golfing on a Saturday morning and spending the rest of the weekend with my family for me seemed untenable with this guy,Saturday golf then drinks then lunch then shower then drinks then dinner then drinks became a routine,Sounds like a good time ,but not when a narcissistic person has got a grip on you.I was miserable and confused this guy was my friend but why can’t I enjoy myself.I enjoyed drinking but now I was drinking because I felt trapped.I did not want to disappoint this guy so I went along .Meanwhile my life was an empty shell.I was a pit trader and the computers finally took me out of the game after 20 years.My wife wanted a divorce every month for the last 10 years ,my kids did not know me,and heard only God knows what from my wife.The bills mounted ,the house was in danger of foreclosure unless the modification went through.I found out that my wife cheated on me with some old friend from the past.So I had a lot to figure out.I decided to quit drinking .this day I will stop. I stopped!!! I laid low for a a month staying away from my friends and doing a lot of reading and soul searching.I was lost but determined to do right by my family.My wife goes out and sees this narcissistic friend of mine and he tells her that because I am not drinking he is the one that has to suffer.Latter that week I receive in the mail a gift certificate to a caribbean booze cruise.I knew this guy was not a true friend .I told him that I was committed to my sobriety ,I doubt he heard a word I said.Years would pass and the friendship ebbed more than flowed until he showed up at my sons football game driving his new Bentley.He would not release me until I took a ride with him which I did for a 2 mile eternity.When we got back to the game which was minutes to kickoff ,we exited the car at that point he wanted to again talk about his car.I said to him great car and good luck with it and then turned towards the football field and sprinted thinking to myself why do I feel so bad that I need to run away every time I am with this guy.
    p.s.
    Over the years when our crew of guys have had our dinners together ,the narcissistic friend still offers me wine (the only one).
    Still sober over 7 years and most important to me is that I have made a loving and trusting bond with each of my 3 children.Now I tell them P.Y.S.
    PROTECT YOUR SOUL.

  18. I have been “friends” with a narcissist for 5 yrs… on and off of course, cz that’s how it goes. It’s been the same cycle of “make me feel special and loved, use me for all I’m worth, devalue me and discard me”…. disappear for a bit… appear again while going thru some sort of catastrophe, apologize profusely, and repeat the cycle. I’m a recovering co-dependent, who has lost virtually my whole family due to some form of illness, no siblings but long for them, and desperately in need of closeness and familial love. This woman, who has two kids, who I love like my own… treated me as well as told me that she loved me like the sister she never had. What a blessing I thought. She went thru an ordeal with thyroid cancer recently and because of that, and by her own admittance, I thought that her previous “cycles” may have been due to her issue with the thyroid. I honestly thought, believed, and desperately held on to that idea as we attempted to re-kindle our friendship one last time…. to no avail. Same tragic ending. I’m better with it now than before cz I’ve done a lot of work on myself thru all of it. I just wanna have faith in humanity and still find it hard to believe that people can be so evil when treated sooo well. I did all I can do but I deserve better and ready to walk away for good… I know it is. What it is. I just feel badly for her kids and will miss them dearly. I wish there was a way to maintain relationship with them. They don’t understand.

    • Wolfie

      Bless you. Your heart was in the right place. I think our greatest stumbling blocks are these: 1) it never occurs to us to be on the lookout for people doing this to us because it would never occur to us to do it to someone else. 2) Because we mean what we say, we automatically assume others do, too. Wrong-O!! 3) We desperately want to give everyone the benefit of the doubt until they prove us wrong. Sadly, but the time they prove us wrong, we are suddenly on the sharp end of the stick. 4) These people are SO awesome at pulling off a great public persona (because they somehow have endless time to spend online and friend everything that moves), no one will ever believe us, leaving us to wonder what the hell just happened and suffered in silence. Last but not least, 5) If you actually try to describe what a narc has done to you to a normal person? YOU end up sounding like a psycho and people avoid you or accuse you of gossip even if you were only sounding the warning alarm. Establishing a NO CONTACT ZONE (impossible in the workplace, family or on Facebook) and holding our heads up and knowing in our hearts we have taken the high road as we walk in integrity seem to be our best options.

      • LilM

        Thank you! I felt like I was the one who was going crazy as I tried to explain this to people. I actually questioned my own sanity! I still don’t think my husband is as convinced as I am, but my girlfriends and my sisters are, so that counts for something.

  19. Wolfie

    My narcs are female apart, from one bitchy man who somehow infiltrated our family via marriage. The rest are entirely my fault.

    First, there is the Sister-In-Law from hell … The only thing she needs to do to close the resemblance gap and a shark at feeding time is to roll over while taking a bite. I tried to be friendly and open. All this was merely stored up to be used against me at a later date. She is forever at war. I guess it’s just my turn 😛 Tho her husband looks + acts like a tough guy, he’s such a coward deep down the mere words, “can I be honest?” send him screaming from polite conversation like a little girl with a tear in her dress.

    Next up: the former BFF narc with the inferiority complex. Short. Fat. Ugly. Not too smart. But none of that mattered to me because she loved dogs like I do. To think I actually felt so sorry for her that I thought that with enough love, listening, patience and time, she could be rescued. Like a puppy. How sad nobody bothered to mention the puppy had rabies and I had to find out the hard way. She waited mere hours after her final temper tantrum (over a Facebook comment no less) to publicly befriend my worst enemy and ridicule me. She is now in the company of frauds, felons, backyard breeders and dog killers. Birds of a feather?

    I was also disappointed to find a (former) mutual friend was a chameleon who could relate oh so well to me because she mysteriously developed every ailment I had in one form or another, and was VERY good on playing our sympathies. I wonder if she knows the former BFF with the inferiority complex regards her as a useful idiot? She has been busy friending all my Facebook friends who (like me) don’t know any better in addition to using her sick dogs and special needs children as sympathy (and donation) bait.

    The copyright infringing plagiaristic beeyatch who studied me for over a year and built her business on the fruits of my labor? Realistically, I should feel pity for her. In truth? Sometimes it’s really hard not to hate them all. It really is. It’s hard to forgive them because what they’ve done to me and to others is just so WRONG. But I realize they aren’t worth my hatred because the person I’m most angry at is me for not seeing it. I was so naivé. I allowed myself to fall for their acts in the name of “second chances” or “being a good friend” or “charity”. I saw the red flags flying and I ignored them. I guess I got what I deserved. I pitch a two strike game now. I’ve learned I always regret the third strike.

    I am so grateful I finally found out what a narcissist is (who knew?), how they operate and what to look out for. Never again!! Never never never ever again. Recently, several friends in rescue were taken in (and ripped off) by a narc. I am grateful for what has happened to me (yes, even the pain) because now I can help them recognize it and fight back. While I am sorry that those of us whose kindness is constantly mistaken for weakness have had to learn the hard way, I am grateful that at least we learned. Even more than that, I am grateful for everyone who is here to remind us we are not alone. Thank you ❤ !!

    • “Sometimes it’s really hard not to hate them all. It really is.” So true. We all hear this so clearly. These people weasel into our lives and purposely hurt us. They take without giving. They use without helping. They drain without filling. But, you are right, they are not worth our hate. Why allow them to consume any more of us?

      It is because you are a good person that a narcissist will hit on you. It is because you are kind and helpful and caring. In fact, it is because you know how to love. You have what they feed on. So don’t beat yourself up for falling prey to them. Instead, realize how strong you are not only to attract, but to survive them. You can still love, maybe with a little more caution and wisdom, but you still have what they do not.

      Thanks for your comment!

  20. LilM

    All of this fits my old friend to a tee.

    Recently my husband and I had a mutual friend who was like this. She was always trying to one-up us and actually introduced herself to people as “a big deal around here”. Red flag? We just put up with her behavior and said “Oh that’s just how she is”.

    But recently she attacked me by taking something I had said totally out of context and then telling my husband, her fiancee and other mutual friends – without telling me about it. She claims that she already told me and tried to talk to me about what I said, but looking back at the conversations, she did no such thing. I broke up with her and her fiancee (we were supposed to be in their wedding!). I returned her bridesmaid dress with a note that said “Good luck, wish you both well” and she had the nerve to write an email and ask if we would still be attending the wedding. She also simultaneously told her fiancee to contact my husband whilst she told my husband not to contact her fiancee. Talk about awkward.

    When we met up to break up in person, she actually had the nerve to tell ME that she’d been so upset for weeks and that she’d been crying about it? Really? She also said she wished she’d never said anything but that since she was friends with my husband and loved him, she “had” to. I said “your responsibility is to tell ME and then let ME handle my own relationship”. Which she did not like.

    She took her view of the world and tried to make us fit into it. I should have known because I was always kind of uncomfortable around her, like she was judging me and sizing me up, and never really felt like I could be myself and her superiority complex always bothered me. She also felt like she had to buy people things all the time. And she was always losing friends for one reason or another. Now I see that probably THEY left HER. Not the other way around.

    If I looked pretty – she had to be prettier. If I took dance lessons and encouraged her to join, she sat around saying ” a latin man once told me i was a great dancer” and just sat on the edge of the dance floor making fun of people. I had to resist the urge to say that most latin men say you’re a good dancer anyways, because they love to dance. They also tell you you’re beautiful, even if you’re not. (Which, I admit, I like!)

    If you were a musician, she had to talk about how much better she was (totally over exaggerating her accomplishments). If my husband and i were happy – she had to be happier (hence trying to ruin our marriage). Once, while we were on a ski trip for new years, she realized that everyone was a better skier than her, so she “had” a massive panic attack on the slope, took her skis off, walked down the mountain and then got a concussion. With the result that none of us could enjoy our vacation and had to spend the next two nights making sure that she was ok. I still never really believed that she hurt herself.

    I felt like a crazy person trying to convince my husband that she was, in fact, just trying to make us look bad so that she looked better! He has agreed not to be friends with her on the grounds that she really tried wrecking our relationship. I broke up with her in person and also told her over emails that we were “D.O.N.E” and not to write back, but every time she kept writing and trying to get me to keep arguing!

    I finally marked everything from her as spam and blocked her from my phone and my facebook. Unfortunately, she works in the same school system as my husband and he will have to deal with her sometimes, but at least she won’t expect the special treatment she had in the past.

  21. Pingback: An Awesome Resource for those who suffer from narcissists in the church | Nyssa's Hobbit Hole

  22. rebecca

    I just found this blog and had to leave a comment. My 17 year old daughter has been best friends with a girl for the last 4 years. There have been warning signs for the last 2 years but we all wanted to see the best in this girl, so we looked the other way. In the last 6 months, their relationship has escalated to an alarming place. We had to medicate our daughter because the anxiety of the situation was more than she could handle. My daughter finally sees this girl for what she is but their lives are so intertwined that this is feeling like a “divorce”. Sadly most (if not all) of their friends do no see the abuse that my daughter has had to deal with….Tomorrow she graduates from high school but the day has been robbed from her because of this narcissitic friend. Any advice about how to move on would be much appreciated. I’m trying to hold her together but she is “broken” right now and feel utterly betrayed. Praying that she can find the strength to move on!

  23. prodigalkatherine

    First of all- I am so sorry for your daughter. You are right to liken the experience to a divorce (well, a divorce of a short term marriage. anyway).

    It’s terribly painful. The devaluation and discard phase of things no doubt included slander of your daughter that compromises many of the relationships with shared friends. It’s likely that no matter what your daughter says to defend herself, the damage has been done.

    My advice would be to educate your daughter about what has happened. Support her emotionally as she comes to grips with just how exploited she was. Help her understand that if she were to return to the relationship, the exploitation would continue.

    There’s a book called “The Betrayal Bond” by Patrick Carnes PhD, that I highly recommend you share with her, and if she is willing, help her process by going through as many of the exercises that you feel might apply to her situation.

    Your daughters sense of self has been violated by this experience, and its important for her to have a time of healing so that her damaged sense of self can be rebuilt. Extra love and attention from you and healthier friends and no contact with the former best friend will go a long way towards repairing this wound.

    It’s very important that this wound be healed. If it is not, your daughter is at high risk of entering into future exploitative relationships because the former best friend violated her boundaries over a long period of time. This repeated violation serves to blind a victim to potential red flags in future partners. This is very dangerous because your daughter will have less radar to spot potentially abusive romantic partners early on. But the upside to repairing this wound by naming it and actively seeking healing from it will be that your daughter will fully recover and have much stronger than average insight into the dynamics of abuse, and will be less of a target for abusive relationships.

    I will keep you both in my prayers today.

    • rebecca

      Thank you for your reply. I can tell that this is going to take a long time to heal. I appreciate your insight. We are working on finding her somebody to talk to….she just desperately needs to have her feelings validated. (mom/dad don’t count). We continue to covet your prayers!

  24. arrow1379

    I never even heard of NPD before and wish I had a lot sooner. I’ve come to realize that I am a magnet for them. My husband, best friend and ex are all narcissist. It made me question time and time again if it was me and what was wrong with me. I feel I have been going nuts for years until I finally started seeking help and learned about NPD.
    I am attracted to people with high self esteem, who need me; or I guess in reality want me to think that I’m needed so they can control, manipulate and use me. They are my exact opposites. I recognize that I have a problem with my own self esteem in seeking these types of people and I’m working on it. I have also learned that having these kinds of relationships are more damaging and probably the worst thing I could be doing for myself. Knowing all this it is still very hard for me to not feel like a quitter on them because I feel they still need my help even if they don’t know it. As much as I hate to admit it, I can’t change people. I can only change myself and those wanting. Narcissists do not want change. They do not want help. They see no problem with them self but only in others. It’s a vicious cycle.
    I don’t have all the answers. I just know that you cannot help those who don’t want to be helped and telling people you think may be narcissist is a BIG MISTAKE! The real problems lie with why and what I can do to change and me and how and if to continue such relationships…????

  25. arrow1379

    For the record my husband and my best friend I believe both have NPD. They have become best friends themselves feeding each other’s ego by flirting and over complementing one another every opportunity allowed. Of course alcohol is almost always involved and the game night or get together usually consists of lots of drinking, picture taking, posing and viewing pictures/videos past and present until someone tires and it’s time to go home.
    At first the girlfriend was my friend but early on was introduce to my husband and family and vis-versa. It is rare that my husband get along with any of my friends and for them and all of us to hit it off so well seemed like a huge blessing to both families. Both I and the best friend’s husband have been very tolerant of our spouses flirting behavior and may have seemed encouraging of it as a relief to ourselves from having a break of giving them attention. I know how twisted that sounds and how it may seem to others but if you are the best friend or spouse of a narcissist your will understand the relief of not having to be there source giving attention 24-7. It seemed like a win-win until it got old. I tired of feeling like the third wheel and began to become jealous and stand up for myself. I wanted my husband back and I wanted my best friend back. I feel I lost them to each other and it was my fault. I became more withdrawn for a long time and neither of them even noticed. That’s when I knew there was a problem.
    I spoke up and told first my husband of how I felt and he jumped to defense of my friend. Since then my friend sensed a problem and starting cutting me out of her life. When we met for an intervention her husband wanting nothing to do with it in fear he would lose my husband as a friend who has established a good friendship as well. So it was me against the two of them and you can guess the outcome. It was my fault and my fears and myself doubt and insecurity that was causing the problem.

  26. Hope

    I’m dealing with a NPD neighbor whom I’ve been friends with for 5 years. I have literally spent over 100s of hours babysitting her children for free, planning a fundraiser for her because her husband was dying of cancer, driving her to and from the airport, hosted a bbq at my house for a reality show she was on to date again after her husband died, organized her 35th birthday party, and literally dropped everything for her “in need.” I came to realize after she left her 2 kids last year for 6 weeks to go on a reality show (that never aired after 2 episodes) that she didn’t “need” me to babysit for free because of finances, she needed me to babysit for free to buy herself nice things. In the last 5 years, I can count on one hand how many times my children were at her house. She uses facebook and twitter to constantly say “Look at Me” and to ask people to do things for her for free. I finally had enough and told her that all she does is use people like doormats and that all she does is take take take and never gives anything in return. I got mad at her because she said she would celebrate my birthday and then backed out. She cannot ever put me first, ever. I have never asked anything in return, only true friendship. Her best friend of 32 years basically said the same thing to her 3 months earlier and she hasn’t spoken to either of us since we told her off. She told me she will never forgive me for saying all she does is take take take from people and completely blew up at me. Usually when I have an argument with someone I care about, I have this horrible feeling in my stomach. Not this one! I have invested so much time in helping her because I met her when her husband was ill, but after 3 years, she needs to start thinking of others. If she can go on a reality show, she is ready to think of others. I’m disgusted that she pawns her kids off to anyone who will take them and leaves them with her mother every weekend. At her son’s tball games, she is constantly on her phone texting and never pays attention to her kids. Her Facebook page is constantly updated with phony pictures of her doing things with her kids. If they only knew how little she pays attention to them! I did take the approach of first backing away last year but it only led to questions of if I was mad. Finally when I said I was and told her what I thought, she sent an email (after screaming at me on the phone) that our friendship would never be what it was. Oh well! She has moved on to use other neighbors in my area. They will soon figure her out although the reality show was quite enlightening for people! They think she is such a fool and she doesn’t even know it. And yes, everyone who has rallied behind her (her closest friends) she has talked nothing but trash behind their backs. If they only knew…. The men she has dated since she lost her husband, she has basically used them and told them they had to put everything into the relationship to be with her. Thankfully one of them walked away and the other is now heartbroken because she dumped him because he didn’t have the “looks” that she wanted.

  27. Chiana

    Thank you for your article. I wished I had seen this earlier. I have some friends who are stuck in this type of friendship. They think this narcisst is so cool and that the narcisst is the one whom makes the parties more fun. While in the background the narcisst has been calling one of my dear friends an “it” and a few other degrading things. The narcisst has even claimed that my friend is a threat to them and that they are scared of them yet the narcisst always makes sure that wherever my friend goes the narcisst goes. It’s heartbreaking to see my friend going through this. My friend friends have sided with the narcisst which has only placed my friend in a depression. The narcisst has gone so far that they have involved my friends family. I continue to pray for my friend and all the other people. I got out and away from the narcisst. My life has improved due to it.

  28. ILovedHIM

    I have had a two year relationship with a narcissist. He was amazing and at 35, I have never felt just exhilarating, compassionate, complete love with anyone in my life. We have so much in common and in business, he is weak where I am strong and vice versa. I was separated when I met him and the day my divorce was final, he stopped talking to me regularly like he used to – unless he needed something. He asked me for rent…this guy makes over 8k per month. It came to my attention that he sent $800 to a former girlfriend around the time he distanced himself and subsequently asked me for rent. There was a myriad of junk that happened as well. I have never felt so much love and agony at one time. I have distanced myself because he will still call or text once in a while. We used to talk everyday for hours about everything – it was wonderful. However, if I attempted to help him with something, he would attack. Often, in his attack, he would bring things up to me that I never had even mentioned, but obviously they were weighing on his mind. I still desire to support him as a friend, without the drama and other crap because I deeply care for him as a person and I see his struggle. However, I need to be careful not to get sucked back in. I find that just replying with factual comments vs emotive comments is helping as well as not offering solutions, just a listening ear. No more rescuing and no more excusing this behavior. I grew up in foster care, abuse and adoption….I have dealt with a lot, however, never have I been broken in my life until now. Now I feel tired……

    • prodigalkatherine

      Unfortunately the narcissist you loved has gotten a lot of mileage out of exploiting you. He has come up with his own internal reasons for why it is “ok” to take advantage of you. As you continue to provide support, he must continue telling himself these lies about why it is ok to take advantage of you. By not confronting him in his deceptions, your support is propping up his sick self. He believes his life is “working” because he has access to the continued “support” you (and likely others) are providing to him. His shame will not allow him to see that he is cannibalizing your resources. He is not able to experience your support as love- only as enabling.
      This may be hard to hear, but the most loving thing you can do is to stop supporting his sick self. He needs to have the deceptions he uses to justify taking advantage of you exposed, and then he must change course if he is to ever heal from this incredible destructive character pattern.
      I had to do this last year with a man I dearly loved (actually I do still love him). It is very painful, but if you can wrap your head around the idea that sometimes you show love by telling the truth, it will give you courage to get through the hard times. He will likely become very nasty to you and/or cut you off once you have stopped participating in his deception. It will be excruciating.
      But what you must hold onto is that this cruelty does not come from the man God has created him to be. It comes from the darkness that allows him to deceive himself. The darkness hates the light, and hates truth. It is the darkness within him, and not the man you love that reacts so poorly to loving truth telling. 1 Corinthians 13 talks about the different characteristics of love, and I think that one that really applies for you is “Love always perserveres” – It is very difficult to continue loving and praying for someone you care about when the darkness within them is actively fighting against the truth you speak in love (by no longer enabling his sick self). But you must perservere in this way: do not harden your heart, and understand the darkness for what it is. Commit to praying for the man you love to be rescued from this darkness.
      Keep courage.
      -Katie

    • Mary

      Hi 🙂
      This really stuck out for me when i read your story. “I deeply care for him as a person and I see his struggle.”
      The trouble is (and I could be wrong)Narcs want us to see their ‘struggle’: it’s leverage. Also, people with this condition spend a lot of energy making sure that you see what they want you to see- ‘struggling’ with one person, and ‘capable’ with another. They become who they need to be depending on who’s in the room and the persona they choose will have everything to do with gaining trust, control, attention. So whichever persona they think will work best for them- they will become.
      Also, offering him a listening ear is the attention he seeks and I can’t help but wonder- Is the friendship providing you with anything at this point? I say this because it’s been my experience that Narcissistic people are able to have one way relationships , where all the resources are flowing TO THEM. Eventually the other person begins to see the lopsidedness of the deal and says something… that’s when the Narc will rage, guilt you out, etc… to try and get things back to ‘normal’ and if that doesn’t work… they bail. Like I said, I could be wrong, but if your friend is a Narcissist he doesn’t know any other way to be and so my heart for you is that you be free of abuse. You weren’t born to be a commodity to be consumed. You were made for relationship and you deserve (yes DESERVE:) to love and be loved freely. 🙂

      • Grateful Atheist

        I have just finished reading every single post in this thread, and I cannot tell you how relieved I am. There was a point in time where I wasn’t searching for answers, but now I am ready to hear that some of my friends aren’t what I thought they were. It hurts to realize that 15 year friendships weren’t experienced in the same way from both people. I feel ashamed, and naive to have fell for this for so long. I have always had a sense that things were uneven, maybe it is low self esteem that kept it going, I’m not sure. I stopped talking to one friend six months ago intuitively. I was through, and until I read this I was feeling extreme guilt for at least not telling her why I had to cut her from my life. I knew, and still know that it wouldn’t matter how or what I said to her – the confrontation would be futile, and hurtful. These posts have given me confirmation that I did the right thing, and I feel a sense of relief that I have not had for six months. Thank-you all for sharing, and giving me that gift of light.

        My other friend is a more difficult case. We have been friends a little longer than the other person. I still haven’t decided how to approach this yet. There are some things I know for certain:

        1) He is extremely demanding when he is having a crisis (which is more times than not), and rudely monopolizes my time, even when I try to retreat gracefully. His problems always override mine. Many hours of conversation happen frequently, where I am just listening on the phone. It’s like he is on stage, and I am an anonymous person in the audience. I told him in my own way that he needs to have 2 way conversations with me. The last 2 conversations we had, he did the exact same thing, then apologized that he was doing it. What is the next step then? I am not a confrontational person. I believe we all have the capacity to communicate in a respectful, kind way.
        2) If I am in need of help he is almost certainly too busy. This is even right after helping him for months. A normal person would be gushing to help, but he overlooked it. He apologizes after, so he knows he did something wrong, but never makes up for it in a proportionate way. He will always buy me a gift rather than actually be there for me.
        3) He is VERY controlling, things have to be done his way even if they are incorrect. You are better off doing something the wrong way and having it fall apart than suggesting a solution. Interestingly, he says he doesn’t consider himself to be a controlling person.
        4) He complains about other people’s bad behaviour but doesn’t see that it is exactly the same thing he does but worse.

        As I am writing this, I realize it sounds bad, and I am trying to think of redeeming qualities. If there was a catastrophic crisis he would be there, but things have to be very bad for that to happen. He is intelligent, and often has good advice. The advice is sometimes peppered with things that he could manipulate to his advantage, so it is important to take his advice with a grain of salt. Thank goodness I am old enough now to see through that at least.

        I guess I am writing this looking for help because I am still stuck, and am not sure what the right thing is to do. I feel really bad for him. He says I am his best friend, he doesn’t have anyone else… This might be a type of control through guilt, but he has a way of pulling at my heart strings that is strong. He has had many friends disappear in the past, and I have left once before, then we reunited. Is there a middle ground, or am I just postponing the inevitable. I hope I have given enough information to get a succinct response. I will keep alert to any follow up, your opinions are much appreciated.

        If I prayed, I would pray for you all too. I certainly wish you all the strength in the world, and empathize with all your situations.

        Take Care.

  29. I am grateful to find this blog. Most of the information I see online about NPD relationships are the romantic kind. I am glad to see that I am not the only one who suffered abuse at the hands of an NPD friend. A friend that I considered a best friend. It’s tough but I’m facing the challenge head on. Thank you!

  30. Kate

    Hi there! I am consumed with thinking about a friend I’ve had for 22 years, wondering if she’s the narcissist or if I am. I found this site.
    Basically, I feel drained, used, exploited, and full of self-doubt. I’ve introduced her to many of her boyfriends through the years, only to find that each of them eventually turns against me. Now she’s just married another friend I introduced her to, and the same thing is happening again.
    That introduction has included many friends — a social circle I guess I kept from her in the past for fear of her taking over and turning them against me. And my fear has turned into reality. She very aggressively pursued each one of them in friendship, making plans with each or some combo of them — never including me.
    In one instance, I learned that a couple of these friends were visiting and staying with her, but none of them ever told me. When I learned of it, I had finally had my fill of all these years (too many competitive, one-upping events, covert insults, credit-taking for my ideas, and expert manipulations to mention here) and went over to her house and I just blew my top. It was the first time I had ever yelled at her. I totally lost my cool and said things like “I can’t even look at you.” The two visiting friends (who know nothing about the reality of our friendship) heard all this and of course now I’m the abusive one. That’s what she called me, “abusive.” And the two friends are now all weird toward while they’ve all become so close. This rage event, and my overwhelming feelings of betrayal, make me wonder if I am the narcissist.
    But I am not imagining how she operates, and ALL of my friendships — once a fun circle, but now that we share them it’s so painfully awkward that I get overwhelmed and want to disappear– suffer. I introduced her to all these people, and I am now OUT. And any response from me other than compliance seems to be evidence that I am all of the things I feel she is being: mean and manipulative.
    Of course she hosts fabulous parties and makes wonderful meals for everyone on their birthdays. She still, after 22 years, does not even remember when my birthday is (she finally marked her calendar last year). She comes off as generous and “amazing” but I feel like only I know the truth and I want to remove myself before I react sarcastically or spill out her secrets (her bad-mouthing everyone’s house-keeping, sleeping with some guy while she and her now-husband were broken up for two months …). I feel like only I know her dark side and of course I am sad for the loss of all these once-nice friendships, including the one I had with her. She acts like we’re best friends when it suits her image but dumps on me in ways that only I see. She has absolutely taken over, and am feeling jealous, left out, and angry.
    What is the Christian response here? For YEARS I’ve done the giving, and it’s not only never enough, it’s virtually unnoticed. I think she sees it as the opposite. How do I stop obsessing in anger? Do I just remove myself and hope that others want to be my friend? How do I act in social situations where she is not only present, but the center of it all? Right now I just look like a sore loser, only reinforcing my being the jerk. Help!

    • Kate

      Haha, this friend totally forgot my birthday again this year. Honestly, after so many years (23), the absurdity of it is pretty funny. And maybe I even feel a sense of validation for being able to call it before it happens. I do wonder if she does this on purpose. But then that’s just mean. So either she’s mean or she just doesn’t care. Either way, I’m that much closer to getting over her!

      (A side note that will not surprise anyone here is that she makes a VERY BIG DEAL out of her own birthday …)

      • Rox

        Happy birthday, Kate. Today is also my birthday, a day that my narcissist ex best friend never could remember or celebrate. But, as you say, his day required a week-long party. Better to celebrate with loving people than to wait for those who refuse to care. Hope your day is fantastic!

      • Kate

        Happy Birthday Rox! Mine was on Sunday, and it was a nice weekend with folks I love and trust. It wasn’t acknowledged by either of “my N’s” (said friend and my brother), but really that’s OK. It kind of seals in my mind what I’m dealing with — and that I am not imagining it! I hope you have a fabulous day, Rox.

      • Loretta Gallegos

        Happy Birthday. Thank God we have other friends and family that acknowledge us with love and thoughtfulness. Hope you had a great Birthday.

      • UnForsaken

        Happy birthday Rox and Kate! I think most of us have had interesting birthday and holiday experiences, so it is Great to hear when someone has had a happy celebration! And many more to you!!!

      • Michael

        Not a surprise to me. When you see her no doubt she will smooth things over and go back to whatever she came for in the first place. Her envious nature sure doesn’t call for you having a happy birthday. Happy Birthday!

      • Penny

        Happy Birthday, Kate, Rox, & everyone who has been forgotten! And yes–my narc will deliberately create a crisis before, during & after my birthday just to be sure that she is the center of attention, no matter what. But, God forbid if you don’t celebrate their birthday early & often!! Since I went NC 2 years ago, I no longer accept gifts, calls, cards, flowers, etc. anyway–they go straight into the trash without opening. Sometimes I throw things in my neighbors trash bin, or even put things thru the shredder just to make sure I won’t be tempted later on to open it. (It would be really weird to be seen dumpster diving in my neighbor’s bin, so it’s a great deterrent!) It’s really rather freeing….the narc no longer has the power to ruin my day!

      • Would you celebrate the day your car was made? No, but you might celebrate the day you bought it. Would you remember the day your house was built or the day you moved in? You see, the objects in your life only have value as they relate to you. Since narcissists see others as objects, the only time the others would be celebrated or recognized would be when the narcissist is in the center.

        So, here’s a very tongue-in-cheek idea: give the narcissist gifts or special recognition on your birthday. That way he/she has some reason to look forward to it.

        I’m sorry. I know that this is not a laughing matter for some of you. This hurts. But if you are in a relationship with a narcissist, it probably isn’t going to change. You might as well learn to laugh about it.

      • Michael

        I’m sorry, but I don’t see anything a narcissist as funny. Myself the siggt of tge ‘N’ that was in my life turns my stomach. I’m free of them now. 7 yrs was enough for me.

      • Kate

        “Life is tough, so you better laugh at everything.” ~ Joan Rivers

      • Michael, you were correct. I finally heard from her last weekend when she invited me to the upcoming grand opening of her new business. I flatly pointed out that I didn’t hear from her on my birthday yet again, but all is well when we celebrate her. Was that rude of me? Maybe? Another friend of mine told me that now I owe her an apology for what I said. Honestly, sometimes I feel like I’m losing my mind with this person. Oh, and she has been telling mutual friends — no, scratch that: her HUSBAND (who I introduced her to) has been telling mutual friends — that I AM losing my mind. With friends like these …!

        She did apologize for missing my birthday. But what choice did she have, really. So, do I go to this grand opening? I can hear you all screaming “NO!” but you also know the consequences. I will be the sore loser; I will be the one choosing not to participate; I will be the one who is not supportive; etc., etc., etc. Part of me wants to go, to be supportive, blah blah blah. Choosing either option kinda turns my stomach.

        I DO NOT KNOW HOW TO LOVE HER and stay sane. Every time is a little death, but isn’t that what we’re called to do when we “love our ‘enemies’,” despite it all?

  31. Rox

    I, too, am having extreme issues at the moment with a narcissistic friend. We have been friends for 19 years. In recent years, the relationship, which began as such joyful times, has been strained and one-sided. The more he took, the more I gave, hoping he would see how important he was to me and how important I was, or thought I was, to him. Three weeks ago, he admitted that he had changed, he was overwhelmed in his job, and over the years had gone from being an idealist to being a cynic. When I wrote him an email, offering to be a shoulder he could lean on and a sounding board for his problems, he wrote back that for years he’s felt that we were in different places, that we could no longer be personal friends, and he dumped me. I wrote a very rational response, saying I would still be there for him, because we ARE friends, but he has said nothing since. I’ve sent two additional emails to note important dates on the calendar, but so far I’ve heard nothing. I’m devastated that things devolved this far, and I’m depressed that my friend has changed forever, and not for the better. I hate that I still want his friendship, as I know he is no longer the man I loved as a friend, and perhaps he never was. I pray that everything for all of us here who have had our lives altered by the darkness of narcissism turns out for the best. Right now, for me, I’m not sure what the best would be. I’d appreciate any wise words of encouragement any of you would care to share. Peace to you all.

    • Rox,

      I know this hurts, but it sounds like you will have to let him go. Eventually, you may see that the giving was cruelly one-sided and you will realize that you are better off apart from him. But now it hurts and we all sympathize with that. You are trying to understand this change, wondering if it is even a change or if this is just the way it was all along. Clarity will come with time.

      For the narcissist, the “we” in a relationship does not mean you as a person and him as a person. It means him and your help, your attention, your worship, your focus, your love, and/or whatever else he wants to get from you. As I have written before, narcissists see others as tools, toys, or obstacles. When we begin to understand that our love and kindness was spent on someone who took but never really gave, who used us, it hurts.

      Please let yourself move on. Find other friends. Renew friendships that were set aside for this one. Focus your energy and love somewhere else. You may always miss the intensity and adventure of the narcissist, but you won’t miss the abuse. You may be interested in reading a post I wrote about a year ago:

      https://graceformyheart.wordpress.com/2012/08/31/why-do-you-still-love-him-or-her/

      Please also feel free to write again. There are many here who care.

  32. Kate

    Has anyone else out there ever lost one’s temper with a narcissist or become so obsessed with the injustices (that don’t even phase the narcissist) that you wonder if maybe you’re the narcissist? I’ve become so consumed by this that I wonder if I’ve now become so self-obsessed and narcissistic that I can’t see beyond myself. My mind is running circles!

    How does one forgive and love the narcissist while not playing into their hands? My efforts to distance myself only result in more hurt feelings and I come out as the one to blame because I am refusing the “affection” offered to me. I simply do not believe her affection to be true, but she believes she is sincere. How can I argue against that, then? What is really true?

    Not sure what’s really happening as I seem to be the only witness of manipulative behavior. Maybe I am seeking validation from others witnessing?

    Anyone else know what I’m talking about here? Is this co-dependence? A dual-narcissistic pattern? I feel resentment and anger, and I worry about that.

    • Kate,

      Thanks for this comment. You have voiced what many have felt but struggle to understand.

      One of the most potent tools in the narcissist’s toolbox is projection. Simply, they are able to project their own negatives onto you. If they are critical, they will argue that you are the critical one. If they are cruel, they will accuse you of being cruel. If the narcissist is unloving, she will accuse you of being unloving. It isn’t just a way of messing with you, it is a defense mechanism against dealing with their own problems.

      And the narcissist is very good at this. In a short time, you will begin to believe their accusations. They might even tell others that you are this way. You will be stripped of any way to hold her accountable for her actions because of the way she has painted you. Anything you say against her will make you look like you are trying to cover your own problems. Others will doubt you and you will even doubt yourself.

      Frustration and anger! No wonder one of the most common responses to narcissistic abuse is rage. There isn’t enough time and energy in the world to deal with this craziness. Please don’t let yourself be abused even further. You are not the narcissist.

      And you cannot love the narcissist—not if you are wanting love to be received. You can send it, but it will never be received. Narcissists are mostly incapable of receiving and giving love. It is the definition of their problem.

      So it sounds to me like you are experiencing a normal, if particularly frustrating, aspect of a narcissistic relationship. Continue to distance yourself and don’t let yourself be pulled back into the drama. You can’t fix her and you will probably never have a normal relationship with her.

  33. Repol

    Kate–Yes! I understand you so much.
    I too am thankful for finding this blog.
    I have been married for almost 19 years to a narcissist, only it is just in the last 2 years that I’ve finally come to understand that was his personality disorder. He has also been physically abusive at times, though never actually causing injury, just the ongoing threat of it. I was ready to leave him, even though I believe that one does everything possible to save a marriage first before leaving, and he has now been required by our church to get psychological therapy.
    But alongside him, I have had a friendship for about 5 years that started out magnificent and refreshing and honestly, at first, kind of pumped life into me while this other component of my life was so hard. But that lasted only about a year, and then the friendship started to devolve. The other person (who was a young adult, who sought me ought as a friend/mentor, and came to be like a son to me in a lot of ways), began to do this wax & wane things with me: I need you, help me, do this for me! And then the very next moment, if I just so much as checked in to see how the very thing he’d asked for had gone, he would respond with angry words about me being invasive, too present, too demanding.
    Then, within a few days, he’d be back, needing more advice, more time, more input, more outright affection, calling me his only safe person in the world, the only one who cared, etc., etc. And my empathy would pour out, and I’d try again to help this poor damaged soul, and then SNAP! “I don’t need you. You need to find other people in your life. I’m too busy for you. Why don’t you leave me alone.”
    Finally, just this last week, I realized that I was an emotional mess. I feel like a “throwaway person.” Between these two relationships, I just cannot keep my feet on the ground. I found myself thinking that if I could just live until my youngest child was an adult, then I could pass away and get out of everyone else’s way in this life. I felt that worthless. I let my two narcissists convince me that my presence on the planet has nothing of lasting value.
    This is so wrong! And I chose to be free from the one that I can let go of. I think I have to give my marriage this additional chance. But that other person is now fully an adult and not a child. He doesn’t need a mentor to drain and squelch and suck dry any longer. And I will always have a type of love for him, always pray and hope that he will be healed, but he cannot take my life from me in the process. I let him go. It hurt deeply, like a death, for the first day, but the second day, I woke up without anguish and fear for the first time in at least 3 years, just knowing that there is one less person in the world who can make me feel so devalued. He does not have that control over me any longer.
    I am doing no contact with him. I am not trying to drift away slowly. It just has to be over. I have a life to live.
    While I don’t want to sound thankful for others’ pain, it is helpful for me to know that narcissism in friendships is truly hurtful, because he made me feel guilty for not being willing to stick with him. That’s why I stuck so long. It was as if I had not right to feel hurt so many times, but I was hurt. That hurt was not illegitimate. His actions of power and manipulation and hardheartedness were illegitimate.
    Thankful to be at least partly free.

    • Troubled

      REPOL, I am continually shocked by similarities in stories. First I am so sorry that you would ever feel you just needed to get through kids leaving home. I can’t say I have not felt somewhat similar feelings. I bounce between I am not insecure to why am I even alive. I feel I am strong but I just don’t feel like anyone ever treats me that great. Well at times they do but then it’s gone. I try so hard to let everyone know I care about them, I love them, I love what they are talking about…no matter how awful they are I say…it is OK. I tell people no worries you can tell me anything I have seen it all…I try to make people feel comfortable…I just am not sure anyone ever does that for me. Except here. When I read your story I think wow, yes. I feel unloved at work and unloved at home…you can say the words but your not walking the walk is what I wish I could say to them. You say you care but your actions…hmmm???

      I know this is a bit older post, my body just chose not to sleep so here I are trying to heal. To me it seems just knowing others walk the path with you is helpful and I pray that you are no longer being abused. Be strong.

      • UnForsaken

        Thank you Troubled, for your words of healing. I too know what it’s like to care and yet know that they don’t care. Maybe we all do. Totally agree that it’s so affirming to come here and be amazed! ” I’m not the only one.”

        Repol, it’s good to see you posting. I’ve been praying for you!

  34. Bluejazmine

    Last month I broke up with my boyfriend of two years. He had a little indiscretion with a female coworker ( they were having out together a lot, and some of his coworkers started to gossip that he wanted to hook up with her), and we had a fight about it. He was on a trip for work, I asked him to not go out the last they would be there with her again, but to stay and talk to me a little bit more on the phone. He refused and went out. When he came back from the trip, I had packed my bags to leave him, but he convinced me to stay. We talked, I thought we had had an honest conversation about what happened with the female coworker. It was obvious that he was infatuated with her, he mentioned that he found her to be very attractive, not only physically but she was one of her favorite people to hang out with at work. He told me that he loved me, he begged me to stay, that he would quit school if I left him, that I was his motivation to become an engineer, his only drive to pursue a career in Aerospace engineering was the prospect making a good life for us, so we could have the best future possible. I stayed. For the following 4 or five months he punished every chance he had for having tried to leave him. He treated me with contempt, he dismissed anything I said, he would ignore whatever I would tell him. He talked constantly about the same female coworker. He would bring her up in conversation randomly. We would be coming back from a run and he would start telling me how she had told him he she had this idea of driving around the country, from place to place, not being tied in one place. One time, him and some of his coworkers were going out for drinks at a bar, he asked him if he could invite her ( I would be there too). I didn’t answer ( every time he brought her up, I would just get quiet , look at the window, and ignore it). He said that he would tell her then that she couldn’t come, because his girlfriend ( me) didn’t want her to. I never met this female coworker. He insisted they were just coworkers and that there was nothing between them. One day, he came back from work, talking ( for about an hour) about everything that happened in his workday, that day he had been teamed up with that woman, so everything they did. Again, I listened, and didn’t say anything, but he told me that she would be coming to Houston, where we live (they work together in San Antonio, he travels there for work) . He wanted to take her out and show her the city and take her to dinner, so he asked me if we could take her out and entertain her. I was silent, I was putting on make up, because we were going out to dinner, he put me against the wall, got in my face and demanded that I give him an answer. I told him to leave me alone. The following week we were going on a trip to Ireland, it was his dream vacation, so I didn’t want to get into a big fight and spoil everything. From the moment we for to the airport he joked with the girl at the counter , he made fun of me with the girl at the counter, he ignored me when I was calling his name to give him some information the worker at the rental car agency was asking. He could hear me, the works who was talking to him heard me and looked my way, still he didn’t even turn. We were waiting for the air train and he had walked away ( without giving me any notice) then when our train arrived, and I walked towards it carrying my luggage, he scolded me for having left the suitcase he was supposed to have been carrying behind ( I didn’t even notice he had left the bag behind when he walked away.) Once in Ireland he was was in a terrible mood the whole time, always looking at his phone and the GPS when were were sitting at a restaurant , arguing with me about things. He wanted to go to this castle, I told him that we had seen it already in the tour, and there was nothing there. He got so defensive, he thought I was wrong about the place. Then I showed him on a picture was it was, and I was right, he had thought it was a different castle. He got mad, crossed his arms and started playing with the maps in his phone. Ignoring my attempts to make pleasant conversation. I asked him to leave the phone alone, and to try to enjoy the time we were having at this cafe. He said that why would he leave his phone at all, after all I wasn’t being very entertaining. There was a couple of things I wanted to do more than anything in Ireland, we got to that town later than planned and we had reservations already for the next town. So I begged him that we stayed there the night, so we could visit the Skelighs in the morning and see the show at the theater I had been dreaming about that evening. He refused, to stay there the night and we went on. He then asked me what I was so upset about , I told him those were the main things I wanted to see and do in Ireland, and he said that he isn’t know it was so important to me. I asked him how could he not have known, I had been talking and reading to him the whole time about it when we were driving there. He said that he just didn’t pay attention to anything I was saying while he was driving, that all he heard was just noise. The whole time we were there I tried not to have a fight, but to enjoy the time there. So, I didn’t confront him about him getting mad at me and walking out of the hotel room because I didn’t go get the camera from the car outside when he woke me up. I was already asleep, I didn’t want to go out in the cold to the car to get the camera. He wanted it, I thought he should get it. He stormed out if the room , and didn’t come back for a long time. The abuse continued the whole trip, I would tell him setting he would dismiss it, assumed that I was always wrong, and not worth listening to. He was never nice, or loving that while time. When we came back I started parking and making arrangements to move out. I wanted to stay friends, we didn’t have a big fight about it. I asked him to help me move because I don’t have any family in Houston. I had moved here last year to be with him. We met somewhere else and had a long distance relationship for more than a year. He was supposed to move to Miami, but he guilt-tripped me into coming here instead because of his school. So, I asked him I needed his help to move the big furniture stuff, since he has a truck, and I really didn’t have anyone else to count on for something like that. For the weeks before moving day, we had lived together in friendly terms. We slept in separate beds, but we still ate together, went to the gym together, I even sewed his tool bag that had ripped and had asked me if could fix it. The day before the move I reminded him, that after he came back from work we would go get the bed and dresser to the new place, and I would spend the whole day taking all the small stuff. He had agreed to keep some of the furniture and things that were mine, because the really wouldn’t fit in my new place. I am waiting for him to come from work to take the big stuff, when he texts me that he is going for drinks with some coworkers. I asked him if he forgot I was waiting for him to help me move. He said : shit I forgot. I was so upset, how could he forget. We had just talked about it the night before, I had been talking about it for days. And this was the person I changed by Whe life around for, moved across country to a city with no friends and no family, postponed my Master’s studies, learned to cook for. I couldn’t understand how he could treat me this way. The beginning was so wonderful, he was charming and he adored me. And now, he was treating me like I was nothing. When he came home I was still packing and I was mad, he asked me why I was so upset about? “After all you are not my girlfriend anymore, so I don’t owe you anything”, he said. I lost it, I started saying all kinds of things calling him a jerk and a liar, he started to walk out and said to take all shit because he wasn’t goin to serve as my storage. I my desperation, I pulled him by the collar of his shirt and started to hit him with my hands. He grabbed me inside and dragged me to the bed and held me down for a long time. When he let go I started hiring Him again, he put his hands around my neck and tried to suffocate me, I digged my nails into his hands and arms and tried to push him off. He is a lot stronger than me, I bit him and scratched him, when he tried to tie me with Zip ties to a chair. We found for a good 20 minutes and finally he dragged me outside to the drive way, and literally though me on the pavement, and threw out my car keys, and locked the door. I started banging in the door, at rios point I was just mad. All my things were inside, I had to go to work the next morning , my phone my wallet my badge. He called the police and made a report for domestic abuse. When the sherif asked for my statement I covered up for him, I knew an arrest would destroy any change if the career he dreamed of. I just said that we had had an argument, when they asked of he has hit me, I said no. I was wearing pants and a shirt with sleeves, so they could not really see where I had bruises and scrapes. I thought they would just leave, and nothing would happen. But they arrested me for assault on a family member, which in Texas is a Class A misdemeanor ( wich I learned is like a felony). I was in county jail for two nights. He paid the bail, but I didn’t speak to him at all until a few days ago. This happened a month and a half ago. A few days ago he texted me, that missed my company and my friendship. I didn’t text him back, but he called me that same day. My cellphone plan is sill under the account on his name, so I asked him to cancel it. He said that he wated to talk. So I agreed to meet him at a public place. I had been reading about narcissistic personalities, and it seemed to fit him like a glove. So, I felt I should forgive him, he probably doesn’t know how much he hurts. We met at a park, and he told me all about what he has been doing traveling for work, going out with friends, his classes, his mustang. Asked how I was, I told him I was fine. He kept pointing out how thin I was, I lied and told him it was because I had been working out. I have been so depressed that I waif he about 105 pounds. I just don’t feel like eating much. I brought up the issue with the phone, that he is only one who can make changes to the account and I would like to get the contract canceled. He insisted I leave it as it, but then agreed to cancel it. When I made indication that it was time to go, he said he was sorry that he hadn’t intended for the cops to arrest me. Then he went on to say that he misses having someone to talk to about important things. He asked if we could stay friends, I told him that not now. That is was too soon. Then he said he wanted my new nber when I got it, and if he should just wait for me until I was ready to be friends. I nodded yes, and started to move away indicating it was time to go. He said of he could have a hug, I said no and left. I have been wondering if he is a narcissist, if that is why he treated me the way he did. At the beggin things were beautiful, but there were red flags. He always bragged about himself, constantly. He never accepted he was wrong in anything, he would get very defensive if confronted. He would manipulate me and turn things around making it seemed I was crazy. It got to the point I started to write things down, because he would deny having said certain things and claim that I was making it up. After the honeymoon was over he turned into another person. I wanted to celebrate Valentines day this year, and I kept bringing it up , but he was into it. He actually yelled at me that day because of driving when we were picking up his car from the mechanic. For my birthday, he didn’t even get me a card, nothing. The first year we were together , he made me a book about all if the things he lived about me, it was very personal and intimate with moments and things we had shared. He for it professionally bound and everything. He built flower boxes so I could plant daisies because I told him that was my dream. He would make breakfast and prepare amazing dinners for me. Then everything changed and I just thought it was a rough patch, and if I worked on it and was patient we would come out of it and everything would be ok again. I am so hurt, I just don’t understand how I could have been do wrong about him. And now, my life is ruined with this arrest record , I am still dealing with the court process. I just don’t know how to make sense of this whole mess. I started reading about narcissistic personalities, and I am wondering if that is what he is.

    • Hi Bluejazmine! I am so sorry to hear about all your pain. These relationships can be so hard and so confusing.

      It is difficult to say if this guy is a narcissist or just a jerk. What you describe certainly seems like narcissistic characteristics. It may not matter in the long run. He has used you and abused you. You need to get away from him and stay away. Don’t let him manipulate his way back into your life.

      Everyone who entered into a relationship like this has felt tricked and betrayed. All you wanted was to be loved. You had every right to expect him to be faithful and kind, and not just at the beginning. When he showed the truth about himself, you saw something you hadn’t seen before. Maybe you didn’t want to see it. Maybe you ignored the truth. It really doesn’t matter. Now you know.

      Wipe the dust off your feet and move on. If you can leave the area, your legal situation may not follow you. Please start over with confidence and strength. There are good men out there who can love honestly. Until you find one, just rebuild your health and life. You are loved.

  35. Repol

    Bluejazmine–I can’t answer your question regarding whether he’s a narcissist or not. But I do want to say that I am so sorry for all the pain you’ve been through. I can understand how it built up in you to such a level that you felt anger and could no longer hold it in. I’m not at all by nature an angry person. But I’ve been pushed to feel intense emotions I never imagined before, and certainly never want to feel again!
    Regardless of whether he’s a narcissist, it sounds like it turned destructive. I’m sorry for the mess you have to sort out, but I hope you can maintain no contact with him and let yourself start healing. Sounds to me like the break is a gift and it also sounds like you are probably young and it’s a good time to start over fresh. God bless you with peace and wisdom.

    • Penny

      BlueJazmine–you have been royally “narc attacked”. It’s not you, it’s HIM! Please, please, please educate yourself about narcissism & it’s red flags. You will NEVER be nice enough, Beautiful enough, patient enough, understanding enough, tolerant enough. You will be nothing but an object to be kicked, displayed, betrayed, & discarded. Please read Pastor Dave’s posts about narcissism, & begin anew today to avoid N like the plague. A N will suck you dry, spit you out, stomp on you, stab you in the back, throw you under the bus and make it be all your fault. Then he’ll boo hoo b/ c he is bored and say he wants you back so he can do it all again. You are not now & never will be real to a N, so stop it already. Get healthy and seek God’s truth & wisdom so this never happens to you again. Sorry, but that’s the blunt unvarnished truth

  36. Sierra

    I believe my husband is a narcissist. I’m just starting to learn more about it. Right now I happen to be struggling with him ignoring some of his long time friends. He’s treating them like dirt and they are coming to me to try to get him to contact them. I’m not sure if this is part of a narcissistic behavior or not. He makes friends easily and he’s very charming but if they ask too much of him he cuts them off suddenly and completely. It’s hard on me because they are my friends too and I feel like I’m in the middle. This is just the tip of the iceberg as to some of the things I deal with being married to him but it’s the most current struggle.

  37. Repol

    Hi, Sierra. I hope you find some encouragment and answers here. I am thankful for people who speak gently and in loving, prayerful concern.

    I am struggling emotionally today. I can’t put my finger on why. It feels like grief and uncertainty. That’s all I can really say. I want relationships to be set right, and yet don’t see any way for rightness because there is no mutual understanding. I don’t understand an actual inability to reconcile. I don’t understand how one person can be committed and invested, and another doesn’t value that. I don’t understand this breach.

    • Repol

      Distancing myself from my friend, whom I did and do still love dearly, has been a very good (although very, very difficult) thing for me). Dave said from the description that might friend might not be a narcissist, but maybe suffer from borderline personality disorder. I think that could fit as well. But in either case, the distance is giving my heart time to heal, and giving me the space to see God’s love for me again. Because both that friend and my husband do claim a relationship with Christ, being under their judgmental and hurtful and commanding and draining requirements of me was replacing my view of God’s love. I began to see God in their images, and think that he too was like them. Heartless, unloving, demanding, changeable, unpredictable.

      Yesterday was the first day in a month when I can say that I didn’t feel emotional pain from the severed friendship, or from the effects of that friend on me, making me feel worthless, disposable. It took a full month of concentrated effort NOT to be in contact, and full effort of handing to God every single time the “it hurts! Take my hurt away!”

      I also feel vindicated about another point that I was accused of getting wrong. My friend’s very controlling mother kept trying to force her way into my life ever since I became friends with her (very wounded, very needy, at times near suicidal) son. I knew she wasn’t authentically interested in befriending me. I knew she just wanted to control the situation and control me as much as possible. She was really, really pushing to be in contact with me a month ago. But after she got word that I had told her son it would be best for us to take some distance, and for him not to be in contact with me again until he 1) knew what he really believed about godly friendships, and 2) could be kind to me and not mean and punishing, then she dropped me 100%. Completely. Went from multiple texts per day, asking to be in my house, to nothing at all. Nada. 3 and 1/2 weeks with no contact. So, there you have it. It really wasn’t about wanting to befriend me after all. It was always about wanting to control me.

      I am so very tired of controlling, overbearing people squelching and conforming me to themselves, but it does, when I can get out of the clouds of their judgment long enough to clear my eyes, help me see and love Jesus even more. He gently leads me. He lays himself down for me. He gives me a loving, open, welcoming example. He sees me tenderly, and since he has given me all his own righteousness, he sees me and delights in me.

  38. Lori

    I grew up with a mother who is a narcissist, but as a kid and even an adult didn’t know how to categorize her as such. Life is and always has been all about her. As a kid if I got sick she had a worse sickness. If I didn’t do exactly what she wanted I was verbally abused. I learned early that being invisible and staying out of her way was the easiest survival method. Somewhere along life’s path I discovered the book “Boundries” and gained much from it. I didn’t disconnect with my mom because I thought as a Christian I was to love and forgive and honor her no matter what. A few years ago however, I’d had enough when she hired a lawyer to sue me. My dad ended up in the hospital with a quadruple by-pass and was in the hospital for some time. My mom was not doing well physically and spent her days in bed alone in her house in the middle of nowhere. My sister and I intervened and encouraged her to move to town to be near enough to me that I could help both her and my dad at the advise of her doctor. They agreed. We moved them to town, cleaned out their house and they enlisted the help of a realtor to sell their house. Long story short, one day they decided they wanted to move back. It was a foolish idea and I wasn’t going to give in to it. So they hired a lawyer to remove me from being their Power of Attorney and I was served papers saying they were taking me to court. I willingly gave up the POA status, but they still pursued it. My oldest brother who lives 3,000 miles away and thought he knew what was best thought I should help them move back. That was the day I walked away and washed my hands of any responsibility to them. Forgiveness was a long process, but I can honestly say I have forgiven both my parents and my brother. Our relationships will never be the same, but I am okay with that now. I am sad that is how it has to be, but otherwise I’d be taken to a mental hospital to deal with all the craziness! I am done being yanked around and feeling poisoned by her words and excusing her behavior. I feel free having separated from the drama and torture, but wish things could have been different.

    • Repol

      Lori, that “if you’re sick, then I’m sicker” thing rings absolutely true of narcissism. My husband has been that way even with the children. When our 2nd was a baby, she had a string of circumstances. She needed surgery at 2 months. She had growth issues (still does). At less than a year, the doctor found some symptoms suggesting a heart problem and ordered several tests. I went home and told my husband. There I was, full of panic and worry over the baby, and he just couldn’t take all the attention she was getting. He got up, came to me, pinned me against the wall, and then proceeded to pound his fist into the wall by my head, into a stud. It broke the stud in the wall so that it actually splintered out into the room next door, and it broke his hand too. Then he expected me to take care of HIM. Bring him ice, bandages, pain meds, take him to the emergency care center. The next day, I had to take the baby to the hospital and go through all those testings for my baby’s heart–alone. Bearing her issues alone, no emotional support, while he was nursing his self-inflicted wounds just so he could draw attention to himself. And oh, how I wish I could rewrite my history so that I wasn’t there alone. I needed someone, and there was no one for me in all that worry over the baby. When even a parent-to-child love doesn’t overcome this narcissism, it is a deeply damaging thing.
      I am sorry you had to experience that. I want you to know that YOU are worth so very much in God’s eyes that there is nothing he wouldn’t give up to have you forever with him. That’s what you’re worth. God said it. God did it. For you.

  39. ILovedHIM

    I finally told me NPD to get his stuff and leave. After 2 years of an emotionally parasitic relationship, he left with no word of goodbye for three weeks. When he returned, he missed me, loved me, cherished me, adored me, all that same old stuff. I had our dog and some of this things at the time. I decided that I would cautiously proceed with the friendship and for two weeks, it was heaven on earth…like it was when we were first together. However, he suddenly disappeared again. Then he told my 17 year old charge that he was sorry he didn’t stop by for a previously arranged meeting but that “He was mad at me for something he called me out on before and while he intends to deal with it, he is really angry right now” That was it. Of course when I told him to get his things, everything was my fault. I have made mistakes as well (looking through his phone, but it proved he had numerous other women that he sweet talks). I had stopped that long ago, because it was too painful to see….it hurt too much. I would rather not know. He said he had forgiven me. Guess not. that was his reason for pulling away and all that good stuff. i am still riding on anger, but I am praying for strength because he has been a HUGE part of my life for so long and I will miss the good times. However, the bad outweighed the good (at least for me) with this situation.

  40. Jez

    My ‘best friend’ of many years I’m convinced is a passive aggressive narcassist. He’s an expert at the giving and withholding of friendship apparantly on a whim, tells everyone I’m his best friend, and then privately does little to maintain any level of friendship (it’s up to me to contact him constantly), but will soon react when he realises I’m not contacting him for any period of time (then it’s what wrong with you in a way that would appear to be a genuine worry to an outsider but experience has taught me is just a way to twist whatever genuine concern I have into almost a suggestion I’m delusional and he’s being ill treated). He’s also secretive unnecessarily, won’t make solid plans or stick to agreements or plans he has made, responds to every attempt I make to discuss anything that has even the slightest chance of painting him in a bad light with avoidance, lies or whinges about me trying to track him or control him. I have never been able to figure out why he thinks he’s so interesting that I would care what he’s doing 24/7 but I’ve come to realise that it seems to be a case of I’m the centre of the universe and everyone wants a piece of me mentality (or as he has often stated “it’s all about me”. I also get to hear regular unprovable or bizarre hard to believe tales of everyone at work fawning all over him, or random women trying to pick up him constantly etc to go along with his elevated sense of importance. I’m really not sure of the best way to deal with him cause a direct approach is seen as a control attempt, indirect he sees as a poor me why are you picking a fight, and a third party as a mediatory he sees as me defaming the awesome person he is, not giving him a chance, or trying to cause trouble. The harder thing is I know I enable it based on our long friendship, the fact I genuinely do care a lot about him, I am from what I (and numerous others who know him) can tell are one of only a handful of people that despite his narcassism he actually does seem to care about on some level despite his narcissistic pathologies (the others are family members), and I am close to his family as well so it’s really hard to cut him out of my life completely. And just to ensure its even harder now I became emotionally and physically invested enough (before I saw the other side of my best friend) to now have a baby to him as well. He hasn’t seen our three month old child mind you because as far as I can tell his needs, and desire to finally be viewed in the light he expects at his career (military) means he keep putting meeting her off because he was told he MAY be getting deployed. I reckon he’d stay in the military for life given half a chance because it gives him the status he craves, and being deployed in his eyes is the purpose of that career. He’d never even consider it could lose him both me and his child in his willingness to do anything to get it, but if a thought like that could cross his mind I’m pretty sure social status would outrank best friend and child anyway, at least till he realises people may judge him for not seeing his child, and then the full blown do everything for access, blame me for the whole thing, whinge to everyone who will listen I’ve stolen his child narcissist side is bound to appear (I’ve seen him in that mode fighting for his other children, and then proceeded to not follow up on all the access given anyway).

    • Repol

      Sounds like a typical description to me, Jez.
      Parts fit my former friend exactly; other parts sound like my husband. But my husband does interact significantly with our kids, and he also seems to know on some level that he is supposed to be concerned about other people. It just doesn’t actually come out of him except in acts of altruism that make him look like a hero.

      My former friend and I had a very brief text msg conversation after almost two months of no contact. He wanted to talk on the phone. I said to wait until we could talk in person. He proposed something a few weeks out from now. I don’t know if that will happen. It’s a very busy time. But just thinking about it makes me feel so anxious and nauseated. I think I need to tell him, in person, for my own strength, that I have come to realize that I am worth more than he thinks I deserve, and that I am choosing on my own not to ever go back there again, to be used like that. I would like to tell him that I think he needs some real therapy. I would like to tell him that I do dearly love him and want his wellness, but that I can’t be there, in his tempest-tossed on-again, off-again, accusatory, neglectful, demanding, angry, apathetic world. I can’t believe he has this much power over me! I honestly feel physically sick, just from such a brief contact. It’s so hard. I truly do care so much about him. I want to believe there’s a healable person still in there. But am I wrong? The evidence suggests that all the good was just chameleon-ing to secure my support. Why can’t I believe that to be true?

      • Jez

        Oh yep my best friend is a great guy, lots of fun, can make me laugh like no one else, treats me like I’m the best friend he’s ever had (till the switch in personality happens), he’s also on the surface one of the most generous people you will ever meet (as long as everyone knows about it or he is getting the chance to ‘save’ me or someone else), such as he will lend money seemingly altruistically, but he does it on his terms two days past when you need it, and failing to take into account he owed you for something anyway half the time (so really it would be him returning what he owed). I also had to remind him daily when my birthdays coming up (which he still forgets then whinges at me for not reminding him) so if I do get anything its three weeks after my birthday. That’s another thing I’ve noticed narcissists are crap present givers. And I don’t mean crap in an ungrateful way , crap as in they have absolutely no idea of what to give so usurp a present you’ve already got for yourself, forget completely, or buy things completely bizarre, inappropriate, you couldn’t use anyway (such as a motorbike helmet when you don’t ride etc) , used things, or things you know they got given free at the gas station etc. The hardest thing to deal with though is if you do genuinely care about them, and you are the healthiest relationship they have in a lot of ways it doesn’t matter cause they end up thinking they’ve found the perfect patsy for their crap. And then if you turn around and say that’s it I’ve over the crap they turn on you harder than people that didn’t mean as much to them, and your used as just more fuel for their ‘poor me always being mistreated’ mentality, and you’re left questioning whether you were too harsh, or just know some other poor unsuspecting person is now having to deal with the fallout from you doing the right thing.

  41. Mel

    I think I was friends with a narcissist. When I met her she was so funny and interesting. She flattered me and made me feel so important. She was fun to hang out with when she would allow us to hang out. She was very negative though. Everyone was out to get her. Everyone was jealous of her. She was never wrong. The one thing that should of gave away that she was a bad person was that she had no friends. Her boundaries with her husband and kids and her parents and siblings were so enmeshed. She ended of being married to a man that worshiped her and was codependent on her. He knew that she married him to get away from her abusive father and weak mother and that she was not attracted to him and only had sex with him for her needs. He was so obsessed with her that he told her that she could cheat on him as long as he did not know. She would call me every night to talk about her need to cheat on her husband with the various doctors she worked with. If I started to talk about myself, she would lose interest in the conversation. Even though she was not in love with her husband, she said she would stay with him because he is the only one who will be there for her when she is old and disabled. She never wanted to go out with me and made it look like the husband got all jealous if she went out with me and it caused too much trouble in her life. I was good enough to call 7 days a week to talk about all her problems, but not good enough to go out with. She was a taker. She was always willing to take what I offered her which was a lot of favors but her doing me a favor was always a problem. She could not handle when I confronted her on the way she treated me.After a while I grew resentful of the way she treated me and I started to constantly complain about the way she treated me. I was sick of being her prozac pill. She was a walking contradiction. It was ok to cheat on her husband who she was not attracted to and thought he was a loser but she would spend all her free time with him because he was an emotional blackmailer and have successful sex with him. Most people who want to cheat on their husbands don’t like to have sex with them and don’t want to spend much time with them. After a while I felt used and I confronted her on being a walking contradiction. She said that she needed space from me and I said I needed permanent space from her. Was I involved with a narcissistic friend and if she decides to regret her actions should I reject her or forgive her?

    • Repol

      I am thankful that this blog has turned into a place to state some things in writing, which are there to return to. Both my comments and realizations, recorded here, and the responses and common stories. I need to REMEMBER. I forget too easily, so things repeat and repeat. Writing them here and reading others’ comments helps me to remember, so that I can hold the course.

      I am not going to meet in person with my former friend, nor have a phone call, not yet. I need more time to heal and not slide back. I wrote him a letter telling him I would not meet yet. He could get that letter tomorrow. I am anxious about him getting the letter and how he might respond, but I am no longer anxious about meeting, and the thought of that was tearing me up emotionally. That particular reaction has settled down with this decision, because I did remember what he is like and what it would be like in person or on the phone if I did open the contact option back up again. Emotional suicide.

      • Just enough time to say GOOD FOR YOU!! Keep going, you are doing great.

      • Rox

        I know exactly what you mean about seeing your own comments and those of others in writing helping to remind you not to go back to the N. I’m in the same boat and must reread these words every day to recall that I never want to feel so abused and powerless again. My N, my best friend for 20 years, broke my heart 10 weeks ago in ways that I can’t even began to describe. It takes every ounce of courage and fortitude not to say you’ll forgive and forget, just to make the pain go away, even if any type of reconciliation would be false and eventually would desolve. You are doing great. Hang in there, even though it is very difficult, I know.

  42. Repol

    It is difficult, but the time passing is helping me to see how unhealthy it was for me. And when I brought up things that were so hurtful or uneven, he would say, “I don’t see the problem. Everything’s fine for me.” But of course it was. Cause he called all the shots and got all the support and gleaned all the benefits of friendship without having to return anything at all, and even choosing to return hurt for love.

    Thank you for the encouragement here. I know I had to make the decision myself about whether to meet with him again, and that was a lonely decision. But once I made it, I do appreciate the support from Dave and Rox that it was the right choice. He should have gotten the letter saying I wasn’t going to meet with him by now. I think that’s it then, the end. I don’t expect him to respond at all. It’s time to close that door completely. I pray God is with him and will bring him to wellness.

    • Fellow Survivor

      Repol, you may not even know it, but you stated clearly what this whole disorder is all about “choosing to return hurt for love” It just doesn’t make any since. You stand behind and besides them, you encourage them when they are down, would even take a bullet for them if necessary, but when you need them for even the smallest gesture of support. Boom, not there for you.

      The hardest part of my journey or struggles is trying to make since of her new found loyalty to her dad. As I have stated before when I first met the ex she told me she hated her dad and never wanted to be like him. For 24 years I comforted her when he hurt her, I listened to all the horrible stories about how he abused she, her sisters, and the mom.

      3 years ago I started to figure it out. I did not know what the terminology was, but he, the dad, had made my ex his golden child. I remember like yesterday looking her in the eyes and telling her to turn her loyalties away from him and back towards me, her husband, where they belong.

      However, after further study, I have learned that the N sums up ALL persons for their value in getting them what they want, whatever that happens to be. She looked at me and my income and then looked at her dad and his wealth. She had to choose. He used to come stay at our house for a week uninvited and my ex would cry on her bed saying “why does he have to come and ruin my one week off from work” Eventually, I forbade him from staying long term, no more than 1 day, 2 days max. He has a plush ski in ski out 5000 sq ft house in ASPEN. We stopped going because I could not stand him any longer. So what did he do? He built her a brand new million dollar lake house, which by the way, I drove her to help build and helped build and decorate. Now she goes down there with her new boyfriends and that’s just tearing me apart.

      Her job, her life, her friends, she would have none of it except for me. I mean none of it. She has a job at a private school that I went to as a youth and she has a job there because of me. They never would have hired her without my last name. Her best friends she has now because of me. Her side businesses she has because of me. She has a daughter that is the exception to the rule in awesomeness because of me. When I met her she was a NOBODY. Couldn’t even get into a sorority in college because she was a NOBODY. She was a NOBODY. Her dad was not rich but I was connected to the “right people” She used me as much as she could to meet the “right” people. Climbed up the ladder and after she had become part of the “right people group” she no longer needed me.

      That’s what hurts so much. The dad she hates but now clings to “his money” the people she knows only because of me. And, now I am cast aside like an old blanket. 25 years ago she sized me up for what value I could bring to her life in material advancement and social status. She was at the lowest of the low in social status. Not even on the radar. If the lowest is a zero and the highest is a 10, she was a 0 and I was a 7, with connections to the 10s.

      As Anna Valerious says, the author of the Narcissists Suck blog, why do they do what they do? “oh who knows,they are narcissists” Twisted souls without conscience, no remorse, no shame, no nothing. A totally flesh based being without regard for others.

      Repol, if this young man is still trying to contact you, try to find out what he wants from you. He is sizing you up for what you have to offer to advance his cause in some way. If you can discover that then you will be in the power position All contact with Ns should be approached this way. What can you offer them to advance their cause? Just remember, once you have provide them with what they need or want, you are no longer needed, and therefore tossed on the trash heap.

      • Repol

        The thing about the young man is that I really thought God had put us together out of real spiritual need. He saw the abuse in my house and, at first, cared. It seemed real. I was dying from absence of real friendship because no one would let me reveal what my life was like–I was shushed by the church and the women in the church, threatened with being labelled a contentious woman, told to just keep up appearances, told that since I was a sinner too, I didn’t deserve a husband at all and I should be thankful anyone would have me.
        Then this friendship developed, over shared interest in God’s person, who he is, and over the desperate need for grace. And over a few months, he saw the abuse and wanted to help stop it, not overlook or hide it. And over more time, he opened up to me about his own past and the harm it had caused him. There were MANY times when he was so distressed and feared he was being attacked by demons because of his memories and the identity crisis it caused him, that he would come over, and literally, we would just pray and pray, claiming that whenever two or more are gathered in God’s name, he is there. But everything changed, and he can’t remember any of that. He can’t remember himself crying over guilt and fear and me stabilizing him and praying for him, laying on hands even. Somehow he turned angry toward me for just being who I am, and I don’t understand it. It’s like he’s angry at me for caring about him the way people who really do love another care–with presence and interest and concern. I think maybe it just hit his wall of self-loathing that he cannot let anyone come through, and because I am so fragile from my life, I am not strong enough to stand up and break down that wall, even if he would ever let me. I’m afraid of him, he can be so changeable. It would take next to nothing for him to regain my compassion, and I can feel my gut tie up in knots at the thought of it, because as soon as he had it again, he would forget his own need and slap back at me with something destructive and painful. I don’t know what it is that I did for him in recent years. I don’t know. He wrote me a letter this summer saying “please don’t ever stop being my friend. I need your friendship so much.” But nothing in that letter said anything about how he might be a friend to me–just me for him. Then after that he went back through the avoidance of me, and even tried to give me away to another person–here, go be this person’s friend. Is it schizophrenia? Bipolar? I don’t understand the changeableness, the utter forgetfulness, the screaming, needy cries and promises which then evaporate into absolute nothingness.

        I don’t understand. But I just need to accept that I don’t get to understand.

      • Rox

        Proverbs 3:5-6 might help. It got me through the weeks after my narcissistic best friend cancelled our friendship. It says, ” Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” I took this to mean that there was some spiritual purpose to my befriending my N, and I should trust in God rather than trying to understand why my friend did what he did. His projecting his self-loathing onto me had everything to do with him and nothing to do with me. I still love him, despite what he did, but I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forgive him for ruining our wonderful partnership. But I won’t let his actions dictate who I am and how worthy I feel. That we were befriended by these Ns means we have fantastic qualities that they lack. When the N leaves, we get to keep our amazing traits, and the N gets nothing, not even a parting gift. We’re the winners in this exchange, as long as we fight against being taken down with our abusers,who seem bent on their own destruction. I hope that helps you feel better. This new positive attitude, which is not always easy to maintain, was bought and paid for with every tear I shed over my former bestie. I wish him well and hope that some day he realizes that he received a gift from God in our friendship, and his weakness let him throw it away.

  43. Repol

    Yes, Rox, that does help. Thank you. And it also helps to know that I’m not alone. I’m going to climb back out of this, with God’s help. I’m going to become again who he designed me to be, and it’s not narcissistic supply, whether primary or secondary. I am for his glory, and he delights in me.

  44. Anonymous

    Hi, I am thankful for this blog, just like everyone else.
    I’m trying to sort out a situation with my friend and I could use your help. We became close friends very quickly. She like buying me gifts, and I was uncomfortable with it, but felt bad rejecting the gifts. It felt like she was buying my friendship. Eight months into the friendship she started to complain about another friend of mine,stating that my concern for the other friend made her feel like a third wheel. I had been friends with the other person for years, but could see that person had too many issues for me to handle. So, I distanced myself from the other friend in order to keep the demanding friend happy, and also to free myself from her issues. This began a cascade of heartfelt concern about my relationships over the next two years. She challenged time I would spend with anyone else. She would cry an say that I didn’t care for her as much as she cared for me. She would give me the cold shoulder and the silent treatment until I’d figured out what her latest paranoia was. She’d ramp up anytime I had some thing important that didn’t involve her. Mostly, she’d shut me out, then wait for me to spend hours reassuring her that her paranoia was unfounded. She wanted to control who my daughter spent time with, too. I’d felt pressured to justify things that I should neve have had to explain. It took forever and it felt like all I was doing was talking about myself, trying to get her to understand why she didn’t have to worry. Eventually, during one of her silent periods, I chose to move on. After a few weeks she tried to contact me via email and cards. No apologies, almost acting as though this were a mutual thing. Then she wanted to explain what had happened. I refused. She said she likes to be open and honest. I still refused. She bought gifts, sent cards, tried anything to draw me back in. Bottom line, as much as I would like to calm her, the thought of stepping back into judgement and control scares me more than the ideas that she is raging or falling apart. Is this an NP?Am I an empath? It’s been going on for 4 years. My Mother is like her, I’ve had another friend like her, and boyfriends like her. I’ve always thought if I changed my behavior, things would get better. They never do. Finally seeing it’s better to shut down and be done. Thing is, I see her regularly. Kids at same ages in same school. I feel mean.

  45. If you’re scared of stepping back into the relationship, then don’t, at least not until you can detach emotionally enough that she doesn’t have that kind of control over you.

    I too am a gift-giver. And as I read through this description, I heard a lot of what my former friend (who may not be an N, but has some sort of attachment issues and control issues) held against me. The truth is that I really did care about him and I did want to be involved with him, and he went back and forth about whether he wanted that or felt my desire to have any place in his life at all was me being overly demanding. So, I hear the accusations put on me in some of the description above (no matter how far I backed off to give space), and I wonder: was she really an N, or was she in a desperately hurtful situation herself and clinging to you as a friend to help her live through it? I can’t say. But the cold shoulder is never a mature way to deal with someone, especially a friend. Friends try, at least, to discuss and come to terms. At some point, that may become fruitless, but at least the expectations and differences should have been attempted to be addressed first.

    But whether she’s an N or just a very needy person, I do know that friendships aren’t supposed to be destructive, and it sounds like, for whatever reason, she drained you dry and you felt she overstepped the boundaries you are comfortable with. You are wise, then to set some boundaries, the ones that you can live with. I’m sorry you’ve had such a difficult time.

  46. El

    I just read your post, and I am very thankful that you posted it.

    So I am a teenage girl in high school, and I was best friends with a girl for about… 2 years. I believe she is indeed a narcissist. She’s super sweet, funny, extremely charming, and lovely…but that’s only at certain times. I feel like she is very two-faced. She’s nice, but she can also be very very mean. Now that we are no longer friends, I realized how different we really are. I’m very sensitive and emotional. I am a “people-pleaser” but I’m not a “kiss-up”. I like to make sure everyone I know is happy, and I like to go out of my way for people.

    My now “ex” best friend was also nice, but she claimed she never wore here heart on her sleeve. She thought feelings were “gay”. She also had a sarcastic sense of humor, and would make a joke and spread it to people. When I told her I didn’t like it, she continued and claimed I was being too dramatic and making such a big deal.

    Our friendship ended VERY abruptly, and I felt like such an idiot. But there were warning signs that I always pushed away. I should have paid closer attention.

    If I were to tell her a story, or share a thought, she always say things like, “Okay, so what’s the point of the story?” I would then feel like the thoughts I shared had to be relevant to her.

    There used to be a group of three of us. My ex friend, another close friend of ours, and myself. Our other close friend and I played a joke on April 1st pretending we had a fight and we weren’t friends anymore. When we told her it was an April Fool’s joke, she was extremely hurt. She shunned us so badly, and I emailed her. I apologized immensely. But whenever she did something that I didn’t like, she never apologized.

    I also absolutely did NOT like the way he treated her crushes. If she had a crush on someone, she would flirt a lot (over text, play with their hands, hug them all the time, etc.), and she would become bored very easily and ignore them. Usually when she saw someone “better”. But I didn’t let that get to me ( even when I set her up with my best guy friend, and she did that to him). She would also text me all the time about her crushes and brag about how all these boys liked her, and she didn’t know what to do.

    She would also do what I call, “hang a piece of meat in front of my face, but never let me have it”. We both wanted to see a specific movie badly, and it was the second one in the series. She told me that it was a tradition for her to see it with a friend of hers ( an acquaintance of mine). She told me exactly what day and time she was going with this friend in a conversation of ours. It seemed as if she wanted me to go, but she wouldn’t exactly say it. So I took it as an invitation for me to go. When I told her I would go, she made it seem like I invited myself.

    These were warning signs that I ignored. Our friendship ended horribly and abruptly, and I was left confused, hurt, absolutely angry, and offended.

    She sent me a text message a few weeks ago with a picture of a list of clothing items and prices from an email of an online shopping website. She told me how much she loved the prices and clothing, and that it was the smartest shopping she had ever done. I asked her for the website, so I could have a look too, and she texted me “no :-)”. I thought she was joking so I asked why an sent a sad face. She then said that I should find my own websites to shop. She claimed that all the clothes were her style ( not true), and I told her that I didn’t think it was a big deal sharing a website because we were friends. She then claimed that I would eventually copy her style.

    Coincidently, we found out we were both going to be the same thing for Halloween (completely unplanned). When I told her, she have me the coldest glare, and ignored me. I didn’t think it was a big deal ( it is such a popular costume). I thought it was funny, and really cool that we would be matching. She then sent me picture of an article titled, ” How to Deal with a Copycat” later that day. We got into an argument over text, and she told me that I needed to get my own style (we dress similar, but not the same. I’ve been dressing the same way since before I met her) and make my own friends. The year before, we had almost every class together, and would only hang out with each other at lunch. This year we found out we only had one class together, and no lunch. Since she was my only close friend, I had no one to talk to at lunch. I told her this, and she told me to hang out with this group. I did, and we hit it off very well. I am great friends with them now. I was first introduced to them over the summer BY HER. So she was claiming that they were HER friends, but she was the one who introduced me to them.

    Our argument became larger, and she told me that those things (hanging out with “her friends” and copying her) were the last straw. She then went on and told me that so many things that she said she didn’t like about me, and that she had just kept it in all these years. She said I wanted to please everyone, I was too needy, I put in way too much effort into our friendship, I always played victim and pretended I was so “innocent”, and that I acted like a “lost f****** puppy”. I called her out on things that were not true and explained myself, but she wouldn’t acknowledge that she was definitely contradicting herself. She said she didn’t like my personality, and when I pointed out how she was contradicting herself, she just started insulting me. I told her (in a calm and nice manner) that a lot of people dressed like her, and she wore trends like a lot of people do, she said that I had should work on my “frizzy hair, bell-bottom jeans and tank tops” style, and that at least she had class. I became fed up with her, and told her she tried too hard to look good everyday (she posted pictures of herself in different outfits online frequently), and she said that I was jealous of we nice clothes and that some people didn’t have to try to look good. We then argues a bit more, and I told her I just didn’t want to be friends anymore. She said “finally!!!! Goodbye!” And that’s how it ended.

    I was definitely hurt. I told my best guy friend, ( the one she flirted with and then ignored) and he thought she was a narcissist. I looked the word up, and I realized that the things she did matched up with the traits of a narcissist. So here I am… Please let me know what you think. Thank you 🙂

  47. Wow, I have never seen so long of comments on any article before. I know why because I had a N boss for 6 years. They play the game very good. I never researched his personality until I decided to quit working for him, and ventured in direct competition whit him. I had wondered and wondered what was his deal. Promising and never coming through. Lies deceit and confusion were rampant, the rules changed often. I was treated like a little child. He called me 469 times in one month. I know, my phone counts them. That was while I was working for him, he would also hang up on every call when he was finished talking and leave me talking to myself on the other end. It goes on and on and on. When I started my biz I took some very good premiums from him, all hell broke loose. I remember back several times I would tell him I must be the bad guy, I can remember that at least happened 10 times over the 6 yrs. He would say no you are just f’d up in the head. lol. He has now slandered me all over town. I am a bail bondsman. He has now got the jailers in his pocket. I get zero calls from the jail now. He has the jail working for him. He once wanted me to burn down a rent house for him, I said no way man. I’m not like that. He said if I would that the insurance co would build a new one and I could live in it. Later on after friend after friend contacted me telling me what he was saying about me. After a dozen or so of my friends had contacted me, I sent him a text, I told him to “quit bashing me all over town”. He never replied, so I found him and ask if he got my message, He blew me off and said f’ur message. I also had sent “you do remember you wanted me to burn that house down do you want me talking bout that?’ Funny only bout 10 days later 3 houses burned down at the same time. Two of which were his and another to make it look as if it may be random. But, it wasn’t random but no one can prove who started them. The last couple months have been really hard to say the least. I have done lots of thinking and researching this personality once I had pin pointed his. I see from looking now that he really has not friends, I thought I was his friend for over 30 years. All of his income come from people who have no choice but to call him, none of his biz is from fine outstanding citizens, only the hurt and broken. He powers over these people threatening them to put them back in jail of they don’t pay as he says. Mainly who go to jail are poor. It hard for someone out of his circle to see his true self, which he doesn’t let many in to that circle. So everyone thinks he is a saint. I will get off here, but I got story after story on this person it goes on and on. Oh, one last thing. Whenever he catches me where no one can see he always taunts and tries to intimidate me. And that N stare when people cant see. Im not scared of him, I am scared of what he could have someone else do to me, if he could find the right person he could trust I know he would have me killed.

  48. Concerned...

    After researching other articles about what entails a Narcissist, I feel that my best friend may be borderline Narcissist. At first she was very bubbly and happy, though quickly after becoming rather close, she took to constantly telling me all of her baggage. She was in her later teens so I could understand a sort of “teen angst”. However this was near-constant complaining, as if I was just her stress-doll. I feel guilty in a way though, since she was also apparently depressed at the time (though I suppose Narcissists usually are, what with the self-loathing).

    As I said though, this was years ago. In recent times, she honestly is much happier… but still has some borderline tendencies. She seems more like a “Confident Narcissist”. She constantly talks about getting a job or working on personal projects, yet always weasels out of them at the last minute. And yet for the unfinished products, she expects enthusiasm and praise from me. I support her, yes… I support her DOING these things, actually getting them DONE. If I so much as mention my own job or any personal projects, she merely sees it as an opening to brag about things she hasn’t even completed and turns the entire conversation towards herself. And the conversation will last for hours on end- I am not even exaggerating. From the moment I get home from work til the time I need to sleep, she’ll talk about herself, her complaints, her non-accomplishments and more if I allow it. The only way I can escape it is usually feigning a bad internet connection.

    I’m just getting very concerned… I don’t think she IS a Narcissist, not yet. But is it possible to just sort of… “become” one? Do I just speak up and tell her how she is behaving? I fear the angry retaliation Narcissists are known for… But even more I fear triggering her past Depression as well. I just feel so stuck… but what she does just angers me with how constant it is.

  49. I’m no expert. Sounds nothing like the N in my life. The opposite actually. My N is very rarely talks about himself. Just when he is trying to plant the seed. My N is a 40 on a scale to 40. Would wonder if she only acts this way with you, or speaks with everyone as such. Amazing creatures they are. My N gets projects completed by others while he’s just in they way running his game.

  50. So Subtle....

    In the same sort of position as Nov 18th 2013 poster…I think she is a borderline N. We’ve been friends for 7 years or really 5 years cause we started hanging out regularly in high school. Through all of high school we stuck through together. I thought she was going to be one of those friends I’d have for the rest of my life. We always had deep intellectual conversations. Around Grade 11 I really started to notice how our conversations always started with her, and ended with her. She had two friends who had more looser weeknight hours as she did, and all she would do is tell me about the crazy things she did with them. I would laugh, they were funny, but I always ended up feeling down after we would talk. I was stupidly envious of her, I wondered why she never thought to invite me to do those things (I dont think it was to make me jealous tho)

    Everytime we hung out we would always go to her house, watch HER funny videos, listen to HER music and watch HER funny TV shows. She would always show me all her taste in Internet culture and I felt stupid and inferior to her even though both of us were definitely the “odd balls” compared to our peers. This is why I would rarely show any videos I liked and if I did, it’s like she always just wanted to go back to showing whatever else fancied her mind. Whenever she talked about herself and a fun time or a funny situation, it felt like we were just talking. Whenver I talked about myself, it felt like I was talking about MYSELF, you know?
    The final straw was when I sent her a video on Facebook of one of our classmates singing awkwardly and I thought “well finally, for once, here’s something/somebody that we both know doing something hilarious that we can BOTH relate to”. Weeks go by, and Facebook doesn’t tell that she’s “seen” it (fair enough, I thought she doesn’t go on a lot) Then when we were hanging out at her house doing the usual thing, she logged on Facebook and I said “oh I sent you a video” she went through her messages and scrolled down to the bottom where I sent her the video. I asked if she’s watched it. She replies “No” in a tone just enough to indicate “No, why would I even watch something you sent” then proceeded to log out. She didn’t watch the video. She didn’t click it at all or make any attempts to view it.
    The signs were always there but never obvious. She would mention how stupid the school activities were or how anything else was dumb compared to what she liked/thought. I always thought she was just joking most of the time, but now I realize she was being pretty serious about most of them.
    Anyways sorry for that long post. My problem now is that she has stopped hanging out with those 2 crazy friends because all they do now is do drugs in front of her. Her grandpa passed away a couple months ago. Now she texted me and is wanting to catch up and hang out. I just feel guilty because it’s like, now she doesn’t have anyone.. I’m just wanting to move on but I dont want to be rude by just ignoring her, but I feel that is the only way to do it. I mean, how do you confront somebody who thinks a friendship is genuinely mutual? All I gotta say is that I was there for her, as a human, when her grandpa passed, that’s it. But now I’ve done my job.

    • So Subtle....

      I just want to update anybody for those who care and/or anybody who’s been in an off hand situation like this…My friend really does have a good head on her shoulders, she hangs out regularly with her grandma since her grandpa passed away and she has a good mom as well. Shes actually hangs out with her 2 crazy friends again, since they figured out if they want to hang out with her, they’d have to stop doing the drugs (in front of her, at the very least). I don’t feel guilty anymore as there’s no need to be, it’s pointless, again my friend has a good head on her shoulders, and when her grandpa passed, she was still ok from what I saw, she just really like to talk about how weird it felt that he was gone. I dont think she’s depressed, or “needs” me to be there for her anymore. She’s busy with school now, and Im busy with work. Life is moving forward.

  51. Michelle

    Sorry for posting so late but I have only just found this article. I’m at my wits end and need some advice if anybody can help…. sorry the post is so long! I have been ‘best friends’ with a narcissist for the past 4 years but it only started to become apparent to me that she was a NPD after about 2 years when her husband divorced her. Up to this point we had seen each other regularly but maybe only once a week, fitting around her marriage. When she became single I offered her some part time work as a receptionist at my business and we began to see a lot more of each other both at work and socially. it was good for me at first as I’d been sinking into a depression about work and also my personal life. her chatty outgoing nature was the lift I needed. we would literally spend the whole working day talking about our problems. As time went on the focus began to shift more and more to her problems. she would get involved with a completely unsuitable man – alcoholic/drug addict/married. and I would spend hours analysing the relationship with her. More shifts became available and if I didn’t offer the hours to her she would take it completely personally. subtly making me feel guilty about it and withdrawing from me until I felt like I would have to offer the hours in order for her be friends with me again. 2 years on and we work with each other every single day. she has entrenched herself so firmly in the business that it feels like I am working for her. she is ‘best friends’ with every customer that comes in. ‘the people’s friend’ as she constantly refers to herself. everyone loves her yet she is horrid about people behind their backs. she speaks so negatively and criticises people but seeks confirmation from me that she’s right by asking if I agree. I have to join in with the criticism with her. then she will turn it around saying she only hates such and such a person by proxy – because I do. because she’s being such a good friend to me and supporting me. hating someone because I don’t like them. It has got to the point where I can’t bear to be in work. She knows all my weaknesses. if I make a self deprecating comment she will store it up and use it against me, subtly criticising me, and slowly chipping away at my confidence. She knows everyone that I know and I feel suffocated by her. but here is the main issue. from march 2012 to march 2013 I became very depressed with my home life. I desperately wanted another child but my partner of 15 years was dead set against it. I started to doubt whether I wanted to be in the relationship any more and I confided this in my NPD. she gave me mixed advice. some days saying what a good man my partner is, other days that our relationship was loveless and I needed to get out. I couldn’t think straight. I started confiding also in a male friend and this developed into a quite intense text relationship. nothing physical ever happened between us but I convinced myself that I was going to leave my partner for this man. My NPD thrived on this and thought it was the most exciting thing ever. I sense she could see it would have been a disaster. in the end I didn’t leave. My partner and I began to sort things out. he sensed how unhappy I was and we started spending more time together, talking more, building the relationship back up and my depression started to lift.
    The problem now is that my NPD has major blackmail material and she knows it. she drops subtle hints all the time about keeping messages going back years on her phone. how she gets ‘loose tongued’ when she’s drunk. a customer might make a comment like ‘oh you’re so lucky you have a great relationship with your partner’ and she’ll laugh sarcastically. She goes on and on about how she would rather be single than stay with someone she didn’t love just for security. (please believe me I love my partner and I am not staying simply for this reason) I am literally walking on eggshells with her all the time in case I say one thing that offends her (you know how easily done this is with an NPD). I want to start removing myself from this relationship but I don’t know how. I can’t sack her – she’ll tell my secrets. I can’t close my business and work from home (this is what I desperately want to do) – she’ll tell my secrets. she has hinted that if I ever want to do something different she’d like to buy the business off me – but I’m worried also that if I leave her there in my place and we drift apart and end up falling out she’s still in a prime position to damage my reputation and spill my secrets as all my customers and people that I know would still be in contact with her. I am convinced that she has already started to do this anyway with a couple of the customers that have become very close to her and joined her entourage.
    I can’t sleep, I can’t concentrate. I just don’t know what to do. I hate myself for having been so stupid as to put myself in someone else’s power like this. but I thought she was a friend I could trust. I can’t bear the thought of my family falling apart over this but more and more I am feeling like I will have to tell my partner what happened. the guilt and weight on my mind is becoming unbearable. I am so scared he will leave me. thank you for reading this!

    • Repol

      That power to harm you with your own confidences is one of the most sinister and frightening characteristics of an N. I know. I am so sorry you’re going through this.

      How is your relationship NOW with your partner? If he really understands that you went through a hard time, a deep depression, a struggle, and now that you are truly in a good place with him, do you think he could understand that, for a time, you had another confidante who was male? Could he understand that you didn’t cheat, but you confided elsewhere?

      I am asking, but not advising. However, I personally find I simply cannot live with the guilt and fear that comes from having secrets. Honesty, and repentance if there was sin on my part in that secret, are the only way I can live. I have to have a clear conscience, before God. And I also know that taking away the secret takes away the power of the N. Could you ask your partner for his patience and love and forgiveness to ease your guilt? Will he see your remorse and set you free from this worry and entrapment by the N? That’s what I wish for you. But, not knowing your partner, of course I can’t advise you to do that.

      Praying for peace and reconciliation in the relationship that truly does matter, and peace and freedom from the other. I’m glad you found this group.

    • UnForsaken

      Michelle, she is holding the feeling of what might happen over you. I’ve been in a tight social situation that had to do with reputation, and had to evaluate how much it really mattered to me. Confiding in your partner may be the greatest thing for your relationship in the end, because you will need someone on your side . The N is making you afraid, and I’m sure there is reason for it, but as you know she’s going to get at you anyway. Try to act as if “sticks and stones” are just shrugged off, becauese her greatest pleasure is knowing she can make you feel a certain way.
      That’s tough stuff to do, anything that gives us courage is, but choosing is an act of courage. Think about Your priorties, try not to react to hers.
      These are just tips I’ve learned the hard way, but may not work for you. In the middle of the hardest times, I couldn’t see the light , but it Is still there. You Do have courage, and the more you ask God what His direction is for you, the more courage you will have. You may not feel it , at leasty ’til this is over, but taking a deep breath and doing the right thing for you , Will give you hope.
      All my best wishes ….I’ll be praying for you!!!

  52. Loretta gallego

    Thank you for the advice. It’s just what I was searching for. I’m still very much in love but have been pulling away lately due to his behavior and his not being there for me. He wants me with him when he needs to look good (usually around his family) . I broke up with him again for the tenth time but he showed up tonite saying how much he misses me. I guess his ego needs to feed. I was cold toward him. I think he is starting to fear losing his ideal. So I will take the advice and continue to create the distance and not be so available.

  53. BlackSheep

    I had an Aunt who always talked about herself and never asked about my life. She complained about her narcissistic mother and often made little jokes about her. She used me as a sounding board, bragged about her accomplishments, and compared herself to my other aunt, sayng things like, “Yah, but is she smart like me?”. She was hypercritical of me for pulling away from the family. When I tried to tell her my side, she would bring the conversation back to herself and her marriage and her stuff. She’d tell me stories, where was was the hero. About how she stole something as a kid and then the next day, gave the clerk extra money to make up for it. She talked about her experiences as a teen, how the guys really liked her but didn’t tell her, how she used to be chubby because her mother used too much salt on the food, how her sister made her eat cheese slices on bread; it was all about her. But she didn’t want to hear my story. She said, “people shouldn’t make excuses for their lives”, when I was 13, basically telling me she didn’t want to hear about my life. My dad was violent to me. I was in an abusive home, with a step-mother who terrorized me. And when she spent time with me, she just talked about herself. She said she wanted to trim my hair and ended cutting it all off; no apology. When my hair was growing out (I was an insecure teen), she grabbed the bit of hair I had (which I had in a little pony tail) and said, “What’s this?”, with a smirk on her face. She was always laughing; didn’t she have a good sense of humour. When she danced during family events, she made a huge spectacle of herself, “Look at me everybody!” She was one of the most selfish people I’ve ever met. She didn’t overtly abuse me. She didn’t call me a low life but she made me feel low and unimportant; it was all about her. She didn’t want to her my story. She automatically defended my dad and said, “Well people do stuff when they drink” and assumed that my dad was drunk when he was violent. But he wasn’t drunk; he was just sadistic. He kicked my little sister in the stomach and took her picture. He kicked me often. He gave me snake bites just because he felt like it. When I was apprehended from his home, it was because he attacked me. He grabbed me and smashed my head into a kichen cabinet and then dragged me into his room. He forced me on his bed and sat on my hands and slapped me in the face, saying, “cry bitch”. He would take a break and sit in a chair across from me and punch me in the shoulder, scowling at me. He’d ask, “what did you learn”. Then he’d do it all again. Afterward, I looked in the mirror and my face was bruised and swollen, my lip busted; I had a black eye. He was always violent. He would hold my head under the water when I was a kid. It was a nightmare. And my Aunt, my intelligent Aunt, would spend her time talking about herself, laughing, not wanting to hear my story as she talked about herself. And she labeled me the bad one; how could I turn my back on my father and on the family?

    • So Subtle....

      Wow. I just wanna say hearts out to you and what you’ve gone through. I have an aunt as well who’s an N and I 100% know what you mean by the “always laughing”: she doesnt have a good sense of humour. Whenever my aunt talks about her problems and dilemmas (shes materialistic, of course, and when shes not buying for herself, shes buying something for someones birthday and it better be the best, so SHE looks the best) she wants her assistant and me to listen to her blab on and on. I could ironically go on and on about her, but I think I need to maintain my sanity, since yes, I DO in fact work for her (it’s only temporary, thank goodness, I am young and just got out of high school so I need the money)

  54. Rox

    Isn’t it amazing that the N can always top us no matter what we’ve been through? It’s not as bad when the incident he/she relates is similar to what we’ve experienced, as long as it doesn’t become chronic one-upmanship (which it usually does). But how about all those trivial matters that the N thinks are so much more important, because they happened to him/her? I told him I was grabbed on campus, and he complains that he only has one graduate assistant this semester. I was undergoing tests for cancer, but his life was thrown into chaos, because he’d caught a cold. I broke up a fistfight between two students (I’m a very petite woman), but his assistant didn’t transfer his film to DVD for next week’s class. Yeah, I get it. He’s so much more important than we “regular” people that his petty annoyances blow our serious issues right out of the water. I’m surprised he can hold his head up so high without its colossal-ness breaking his neck. It’s amazing he hasn’t asked me to hold it up for him. After all, we non-Ns have nothing better to do, right?

  55. Ashley

    I ended a friendship with a narcissist a year and a half ago.
    I lost my virginity to him because he asked me to because we were best friends and he said he didn’t want me to lose it to someone who will use me. I agreeded, thinking that he would never hurt me. I was wrong. After the sex, he avoided me and started posting subliminal Facebook statuses about me. It made me feel incredibly guilty, like I did something wrong. After all this, he tossed me to the side and didn’t bother to hangout with me for 8 months. Not to mention that during that time we would text about once a month, 95% of the time involved me text in him first. Then when we finally saw each other he did nothing but insult me the whole evening. When I finally stopped talking to him, he sent me a message saying “Goodbye. Goodluck :)” Which made me feel bad and once again proved how much he manipulated my feelings. I still feel sad and exhausted from this situation.

    • Kathy

      Ashley, I just saw this post for the first time. I am so very sorry for the pain this boy has caused you. Please don’t blame yourself. You were conned. Hold your head high.
      God made you in His image — you are beautiful and worthy. One way we are created in His image is that we too can create. God allows us to have a hand in His beautiful creation by giving us (especially woman) a big part in creating more people!
      Love yourself. Love God. Give Him permission to guide you, and listen for His guidance. You may not believe it now, but someday some wonderful man who loves you and will take his part in the possible creation of another human being very seriously will come into your life.
      You are so special. Make sure that you are with someone who understands that and is equally as special. ❤

  56. Confused

    I’m not sure if this thread is still going, but I’m so glad to see it here. I’ve been dealing with a situation best I can for more than 3 years now, but I have to say, it’s getting harder and harder. Would love to know what others think about it and what I possibly could do next. I’ll try to keep as short as possible..I’m a strong, educated, confident, but very humble woman of faith. I have a great job, no kids (by choice), and enjoy life to it’s fullest. I have many hobbies that keep me happy and busy, as well as a wonderful boyfriend in my life. The issues stem from the wonderful boyfriend’s family. I met them 6 years ago. Wonderful family, good people. Never a bad word between us. The boyfriend has 3 brothers, cousins, and young aunts and uncles that are near our age so when I met them, we all began doing things together all the time. Good times, all the time!! There was also a good friend of the family and his girlfriend that joined in…I’m talking concerts, beaches, parties..for 3 years, never a bad word or instance of anything negative between us. Always a good time! Then the friend brings a girl around that apparently was an old friend from high school who he reconnected with from one of the social media sites. When I met her, I thought she was wonderful. She immediately opened up about some serious trouble in her marriage and her contentious relationship. She has 3 kids and according to her, her husband was an abusive, controlling man who doesn’t even give her money for the kids lunches…meanwhile she comes off so sincere and self-deprecating one just can’t imagine how anyone can treat such a kind, gentle person like this, so poorly….Oh boy! That’s how she lured me in. We became fast friends and I felt like I just wanted to help her get through this difficult time. She confided everything to me, her marital problems, family/finance problems, and she included the fact that she began sleeping with one of the boyfriend’s brothers, while still having a thing for another brother. In fact, she was flirting and talking on the phone nightly with the other brother(a little aside, the brother she was sleeping with, did not want anyone to know they were sleeping together so she was sworn to secrecy – which of course is impossible for someone like her – She told me, but the brother she was on the phone with did not know. There is more to this story but truly I don’t believe it’s relevant) Anyway, I counseled her as best I could and told her she was playing with fire..these were brothers! pick one and leave the other alone. She laughed liked she proud of this. After that I pulled away a bit, didn’t call as much….I can’t put my finger on it ,but I just felt something was wrong here…So there were so many more things and I could write a book. But to keep this as short as possible, I don’t know if it’s because I pulled away a little, or because I was hard on her about the brothers or some other unintentional reason… I became her target. She very cleverly and systematically got most of the people we were hanging out with to think I had it out for her and that she was this poor, innocent victim that they needed to protect from ME! I naturally didn’t realize it at first. In fact when the friends, cousins and brothers started treating me differently, I really didn’t know why?? then I realized how differently they treated me when she was around…like she needed to be protected from me…that’s when I connected the dots…I noticed she would throw these little comments out to me when no one was around, like how everyone loved her, and she couldn’t understand why anyone would have a problem with her, and then when anyone was around she’d sit in the corner like a little frightened child that needed their protection. I was devastated! She was soooo good at it!! I realized that this very sick, conniving, woman was able to convince these otherwise good people that I WAS THE AGGRESSOR! At first, I was angry at the family and friends, After all they KNEW ME! They’d known me for 3 years! How could they believe this about me! then I realized that I was taken in by this very same act and I know how good she is…I confided in my boyfriend and my closest girlfriend. They supported me and we decided together the best course of action was to ignore her and go about my life as if nothing’s wrong. We’d hope that in time, her true self would be revealed and she’d be gone…It appears to have work a little as the one brother discontinued the relationship and she hasn’t been around as much. But she’s still out there….She has since finished divorce proceedings (proudly took him for all he’s got) and continues to talk with the both brothers and friend. When I realized I was in her cross hairs and started to investigate this kind of behavior, I saw that the most recommended remedy is to GET THE HELL OUT OF THE WAY! So that’s what I did. I stopped hanging out with them when she’s around. if plans were being made, by boyfriend and I politely declined or made an excuse. In time I think they saw the pattern and just stopped inviting us. Which believe me is fine. However, there are times at some gatherings (thankfully, not holiday family gatherings) and such when she’s been invited and she continues to sit there as if I’m out to get HER. I kind of get the feeling that some of these people are starting to see something, but I’m not sure. They appear to talk to me now and are little more friendly. I’ve never talked to any of them about this as I felt It was important that they find out for themselves what she is. So I can continue on this path, but I have to say my big concern is that the one brother she continues to talk to is lonely and possible vulnerable. I know she wants to hook either one of these single brothers – and they all continue to hang out with each other, although I don’t believe they see each other very regularly. Truthfully, what they do is not my concern. My only concern is protecting myself from this crazy woman. Here’s my dilemma. I’m concerned that if she hooks either one, then she will be brought around more and more and I truly believe she will stop at nothing to get rid of me. I believe she is so insanely jealous of me that she went after me the only way she could…by damaging my reputation with lies and innuendos in the eyes of the people I had established wonderful relationships with. I have no doubt she will stop at nothing to get rid of me. So What to do now. Do I keep going as I am?? do I confront her?? Do I be a little pro-active and confront the family members who’ve already been taken in by her?? or do I wait to see what happens next and deal with it reactively? Would absolutely welcome any advice on what to do next….

    • UnForsaken

      Confused, happened to see your post as a new one!

      Yeah, that’s a really hard question! I think your “playing it by ear” and staying calm may be the reason you’ve gotten this far. In my experience with a ” victim N” they do try to create drama and it may come to a head……but , don’t fall for it. If they have made the world look like it’s coming to an end, it’s not. So , stay calm no matter what happens, don’t react, watch carefully, and don’t fault yourself for what happens……I’ve seen them change game plans midstream.

      It’s hard to say whether you should warn the family or not because I don’t know how close you are, but as a general rule I would doubt it would produce belief . It usually just seems to turn them back to the other person, as much as we would like to save them from that! Like teens beginning life people can’t be told and really understand these weird things, they have to see it through their own choices. ( Ouch!!)

      So, maybe the only real advice I can offer is no matter what happens, stay caring . People do generally get the idea about your attitude. If you try to explain, they may only be troubled by how the weirdness you are describing makes you sound weird. ( Been there, done that! 🙂 ) But being caring toward everyone in your demeanor may make them doubt some of the lies they’ve heard about you. It can be hard to come across with care when you are worried, but if you keep your self respect it helps. Sounds like you have put a lot of effort into this already!! 🙂

      OOh, and relax. Knowing that she is murdering your reputation can be draining, but she’s going to do it anyway….you might as well focus on what Does matter in life, and the joy of living it!!!! Read this blog, listen to the ocean/music, spend time with/connect with friends outside your circle, read the Bible, pray, Chill!!! I know that doesn’t sound as proactive as we would like, but I have experienced it too, and although it takes time I have found it Is Proactive and Healing!

      Praying for you – peace and guidence – and hoping some of this will help a little! (((Hugs!)))

      • confused

        I can’t even begin to thank you for your thoughtful reply. I can tell by your response that you truly understand what I’m going through! Sometimes I feel so alone, like no one knows what it’s like to have a lifetime of character building taken down in one fell swoop by the lies of another. You put it perfectly….murdering your reputation’ I think that’s the hardest part for me. 😦 I am going to keep on this path and hope and pray for the best. I will watch carefully and not react. I know that is so important and I know it’s the one thing that gets to her..maybe it will be the one thing that makes her slip up too! 🙂 Thanks again for your kind thoughts and prayers!

    • Penny

      Confused: what you described is what is often called “the betrayal of the bystanders”, and you can read about it here:
      http://narcissists-suck.blogspot.com/searchq=betrayal+of+the+bystanders
      (Be sure to click on the link in the blog to Kathy Krajko.) Here is an excerpt: “I long ago decided I would embrace truth because the truth is where life resides. Lies may accomplish short term goals, but in the long run living in lies embrace life-destroying effects. The complicit bystanders who lap up gossip like a cat laps cream are exposing their love of lies. They are dangerous to your life. When they are exposed to you as the result of a narcissist’s attempt to assassinate your character, your best choice is to put as much distance between the credulous bystanders and your self as possible.”
      It is good that your boyfriend & girl friend believe you, but why have they remained silent? If this drama queen is allowed to continue to assassinate your character with impunity, she will. It’s one thing to side with you privately, but quite another to state it publicly. Are you really willing to hang out with family/friends who have “forgotten” everything they previously KNEW to be true about you, choosing instead to believe her lies? Are you willing to see the vulnerable brother be used and discarded? She has found a fabulous pipeline to fuel her narcissistic needs, and they either don’t get it, or are enjoying it too much, so she’s not going anywhere until she has to. What about the brothers? Do they realize what she is doing? What if she goes after YOUR boyfriend? Would they care? Would anyone? Will anyone speak the truth here? The one thing that Ns hate is to be exposed, and Pastor Dave has written about that on this blog. If the truth is told & she is exposed, then either she will be the one who flees to find another pipeline, or you will become the sacrificial lamb, but knowing who your real friends are. Only you can decide.

      • UnForsaken

        Confused, what Penny says is also true. There are times when we must speak up , completely distance ourselves from everyone closest to the situation , and have to be really brave. But what ever God leads you to do, I know He will be with you and will give you peace about it. Talk to Him.

        I am continually surprised by how He knows so fully our needs. I know I should know by now, but maybe it’s God’s way of making me a deeper person to see His answer coming in the most unexpected way. It’s like: ” Look, I’m here for you when you don’t see Me. I’m using this sadness to make you more like Me. When things are the most impossible, watch and believe. Do what I say. I Will deliver you!”

      • confused

        Dear penny and forsaken…I can’t thank you enough for taking the time to respond! I was so happy to see this blog because I’ve been so torn on how to handle this! Sometimes I feel like not reacting is the answer, sometimes I feel like trying to talk to the family is the answer. I’ve been trying to educate myself on this subject because I truly don’t understand how anyone can be so mean and vicious and I’m stunned at how easy this nut twisted simple, innocent words and events into this u ugly mess and fed it to these otherwise innocent people. I mean, how can I possibly explain to them what is happening? not one of them ever came to me and said, ‘hey it’s this true?’ From everything I’m reading, its said that it’s best NOT to say anything because it gets turned back on you AGAIN… as for the boyfriend, he’s such a good, gentle, guy. He’s a loving son and brother. This family has a situation going on with yet another brother and his wife..I just didn’t want to get my boyfriend involved. I figured I know the truth and it would come out on its own. I’m still hoping for that. In the meantime, I pray for the strength not to react and I live my rich and full life as best I can. On a happy note, I spent mother’s day with this family and ALL were very nice to me. I felt a little more comfortable than I have been. I’m hoping it’s a sign that maybe they’re seeing things a little more clearly. I think I’ll give it a little more time and then if it gets bad again I’ll either say something or re-evaluate my relationship with my boyfriend. Honestly, I’m very family oriented and if I can’t get along with his family (for whatever reason) then I truly don’t belong there..that prospect saddens me, but it may be the only way to get away from this craziness and live my life in peace!

      • UnForsaken

        Confused, I sense you’re dealing with a dangerous N…..however, you are taking the right precautions. You know, it’s funny how Ns can dump people/discard them when they don’t think you want those people anymore, or aren’t as good of friends. They move on after losing interest, like it was a competition for ownership. So maybe the relationship with your boyfriend and his family will cool a little, maybe it will be stronger because of it. There are so many possibilities if you give it to God and wait. Keep on looking up – we’re pulling for you!

      • confused

        You are all so awesome! Penny, I love the quote! I know I’m dealing with someone very dangerous. Anyone who could do what she is doing…. the WAY she does it so easily and with such smugness…is really a lost soul. It’s funny because a lot of what I’m reading, people have a problem with the relationship ending…there’s a sadness there..I feel just the opposite. I’m happy to keep her away.I could care less about her or what she’s doing. Knowing what I know now about her, I have no desire whatsoever to have her in my life. She’s not the kind of person whose company I enjoy, nor do I have anything in common with her. My biggest concern is the damage she’s done to my reputation and character, and that I’m sure she’s still doing it. . To have someone so devious be able to convince people that I’M the aggressor, out to ‘get’ her is just crazy . Did they completely forget the 3 years they knew me? Interacted with me? They never once saw a a hint of unkindness from me! It’s not who I am. This is my hurt. It comes from the fact that people I developed sincere relationships with based on giving and genuine caring, was so easily discarded on the lies of an idiot. As far as I’m concerned, their relationship with her is a house of cards. I have to believe that one day that house is going to come crashing down and she’ll be exposed for what she is, but even if that happens I don’t ever see myself feeling ‘safe’ with those who were so quick to believe this crap in the first place. I’m doing my very best to move forward, but it’s hard when I feel the threat is still out there. .. I do look to God for my daily strength and path to follow. I know the pain I feel will eventually disappear as he gets me through this. In the end it’s only his awesome love that I need anyway! 🙂

  57. Dan

    Um. where to start… well I became friends with a narc years and years back now and at first I didn’t know he was a narc or even what one was I only recently discovered what the term actually meant when someone brought it up and I didn’t understand the word so out of curiosity I googled it and was surprised at what I had stumbled across. It was a clear description of a friend of mine who I always thought was a bit weird, from reading all these post and so forth I finally knew what my friend was, now I say he is a friend because I believe at times he can be alright to talk to even if half the time the conversation reverts back to him, me and him do have things in common which is why we became friends and got along so well which is why at times I didn’t mind putting up with the other side of him, as of lately I’ve had enough and I’ll try to explain why. Now one of the first instances that I can kinda recall it’s going back some time is when he kept having a go at me because I didn’t always want to do the things he wanted to do and massive disruptions came out of this over time and eventually I had enough and we limited the time we saw eachother, anyways after a few months I got in a relationship and most of my time was spent with her I had work in the morning and saw her when I get back from work I also saw the narc at night times before I would drive back home so that we had spent some time also to stop any disputes it may cause but this wasn’t the case, the narc had a friend who may I mention I get along with fine when I see but when with the narc it is a completely different story such as he hates you etc, and this persisted to this day and I realized he DOES NOT like his friends mixing with other friends as far as I can tell that is a big no go zone not entirely sure but it causes disputes because the narc would way go behind my back and say stuff to cause a disruption between one friend and another, again not sure why the narc does this but he does. Now after some time I get real fed up with these disputes that got bad real bad and I went round there once after an argument and the narc lied to my face I found this out later on but knew it was the narc causing the trouble, so I pulled away a bit over a few months I seemed to let it slide as I tend to do, and went to see him on his birthday got him a present etc, and saw him now and again, this did not go down too well with the narc who verbally abused me and went a bit over the top I just let him get it out of his system it was clear he wanted too and I said to him that he is just a horrible person no so called friend would come out with the things he was saying, he then turn’t people against me who I had no quarrels with what so ever but apparently as was told by the narc I was no longer liked by these certain people which didn’t bother me because I had done nothing wrong and if they choose to be like that then I would simply cut contact which I did. A few months went by and I ended up bumping into him and it was an all round casual conversation like we didn’t have a big dispute a few months back and for me personally it’s hard to not be nice to someone when there being nice and so back to being friends. I then would notice the subliminal hits at me would come into conversations we had, I started noticing this when they became more apparent and like hang on are you talking about me? Which would always be throw off one way or another, but as the subliminal hits weren’t taking effect as the narc intended he wen’t mad one day and just stated abusing me and not in a full rage tone of voice but in a rather casual voice and these weren’t subliminal they were questions aimed right at me so I knew and had to answer they were of something on the lines of do you think your better than me? Do you think you’ve done more with your life than me because I know I have done more than you I do this and I’ve done that etc at which point I believe I was like I don’t understand why your saying this and can’t remember how it went from then on oh and before I forget there were subliminal hits at me years and years ago which I remember just thinking why would he say that, he would say things just to put me down which I still remember to this day and understand better why he did that and realize he has always been doing that. Where was I, right basically when i didn’t see him all the time that’s when things would kick off and I know I’m not perfect but I’ve been there for my friends when they’ve needed me and been there for the narc on many occasions through a lot of tough times before and after the arguments we have had, yet that seems to all go out the window when I’ve had enough of his subliminal hits just to get at me and when they do he knows it and finds it funny and even says “did that get to you then?” I mean who would actually act like this I have never encountered anyone like him and I realized something was wrong when I used to hang round other people where you can have a conversation which isn’t one sided and where feelings are accounted for not brushed a side because of a lack of care it’s nice to be around people who aren’t like the narc, hence why I did pull away quite a bit I didn’t need nor want the abuse but it just seems that is part of the narc and over time I have come to accept it, it’s not like he is like this all the time just a lot of the time I do like it when we do things that we have in common with but even then there is still a problem with the narc because if we are doing what we both like it seems like there is a competition and he would patronize me and claim he is better continuously and to this day still does this and if he believes I’m better or going to be he gets bitter and cold about it and seems like he can’t tolerate not being the best and will have to put you down about it and make you know he is better, and in general life it’s like this as well the narc can’t stand anything that seems to be better even if you wear new clothes he will hate it and will have to make sure to put you down for it even if you love what you brought and yet the narc will admit that he also likes it but what I believe to be the case is if someone else has it and not him then jealously kicks in with the bitterness and it is completely unnecessary, you’ll just be sitting there dealing with someone who is a so called “friend” try to put you down. So we’ve covered that, if it’s not his way he will let you know in his own bitter way, now what’s next well there’s the self grandiose he absolutely loves himself and thinks he is gods gift, he thinks that all the girls are after him and that he looks absolutely amazing you could be walking down a street and if someone glances over to you which people tend do when walking past it will be oh did you see them check me out they definitely weren’t checking you out there checking me out and I’ll be like I couldn’t care less but then I get I’m jealous thrown in my face because I don’t get that deluded treatment he receives. His looks are by far the most amazing in the world according to him and he loves looking in the mirror just talking to himself and doing random poses, also he will have to put down your looks just to make himself look better and he’ll try to get that across as much as possible I can’t honestly count how many times he thinks he is better looking like it’s a competition when I don’t mention anything of the sort. The narc believes that if he has money he is a naturally better human being. I have heard him talk about his friends behind their back to me that’s when I realize that he most likely does the same to me. The narc can also make plans with you but if something else comes up he will chuck those plans a side and do whatever has come up. You feel as though you have to walk on egg shells around him because you never know when it’s going to set something off. If you try to confront the narc about his behavior he will throw it off as he didn’t mean it and will act nice again until next time. Also I’m the one to blame for all the arguments it’s always your fault it will be something like you’re never there when I want you and may I mention he wants me at the most absurd times in the night and calls you bad a friend in a more explicit volatile way if you fail to comply to his needs and this will happen for each occasion you don’t follow him when he says go, at current time I have pulled away and not sure if we will speak again but I believe so as it always happens one way or another and as I’ve said early on it’s hard to be angry at someone when there being nice, admittedly I tend to forgive quite easily which I guess is a fault of my own, we do have a laugh sometimes and can get along at times please bear this in mind as a factor when taking into consideration of what I’ve said. I’m on the brink of making my decision as what to do next but just tied between dealing with this side of the narc and keeping the laughs we have and just dealing with this as usual or just pull away altogether. I’d appreciate some opinions on this matter as a lot of people here seem to have vast experience with this subject, Many thanks.

    • UnForsaken

      Dan, wow, you’ve been through a lot. It seems to me you have suffered enough , esp. having tried to cut this off before. People tend to keep on going back to Ns because they see the good times. But those good times will end; he will discard you at some point. A clean break will free you emotionally from the person who – admit it – is trying to destroy you! How much time has he taken up in your life? He probably tried to take over somewhat, just to make you feel you need him. He doesn’t want help; he wants someone to put down and make himself look bigger.

      It’s good to hear you have identified so many traits and that you have friends who are not like that. Keep your eyes open for people who are safe even when you are forgiving, people you can share with and are there for you. The very best way I have found yet to make good friends is to spend some quiet time alone, discovering what you like, what you want to be, what God wants you to be. He tells us the most amazing things about ourselves, all the more so because they are True. Christ is your very best friend, and wants you to know Him better. The N does want to be your god and warp the way you look at life…….but our heavenly Father will make you see life beautifully through His eyes, and help you become a better person. He loves forgiveness and He will not use it against you. He will guide you .

      I will pray for you! 🙂

  58. Penny

    Dan & Confused: I too will pray for you both. It is so maddening to hear your stories, and UnForsaken is so very right: “the N wants to be your god and warp the way you look at life”. The N wants to be adored & worshipped, but the only One worthy of that is our Father in Heaven. Ns have created a false god, an idol unto themselves, and there is no fellowship between light & darkness. Their deeds are dark, but God wants you to live in Truth & Light! Seek Him, seek the Truth and He will shed His light on you and expose the darkness. For those of us here who have experienced the darkness of an N, this is not rhetoric. We long for the confusion to go away and to live in peace and in genuine love. God is not the author of confusion. He wants to bless you, not curse you. The best way to do that is to trust Him, look to Him and away from the N. Look to the cross. God will not deceive you, compete with you, curse you, lie to you or denigrate you. Honest.

    • confused

      I had read this earlier and just read it again. I know these things to be true. In my pain I momentarily forgot then. I will work on giving this to God and wanting patiently for his guidance….

  59. Penny

    Just found a great quote: “Narcissists try to destroy your life with lies, because theirs can be destroyed with the truth”.

    • Rox

      Penny, your quote is spot on! Ns will use lies, tree branches, killer rabbits, or anything within arm’s length, if they thought it would help them hurt just one more good person in this world.

      • UnForsaken

        Penny, I keep on coming back to your replies because you put things into the words I lack. Thank you !!!

    • Kathy

      Yep!! And that’s why they engage in the smear campaign — they have to smear you quickly because they are so afraid of being exposed by you — you KNOW the truth and MUST BE discredited before you spill the beans!

  60. Penny

    I am re-posting the link to Anna Valerious’s blog, “Narcissists Suck”, b/c I think it was a bad link. I hope this one works, but if not, just go to her blog and type in “betrayal” in the search bar and you can find it. Here is the link again (I hope):
    http://narcissists-suck.blogspot.com/2007/09/betrayal-of-bystanders.html

    Note: Anna’s blog is named “Narcissists Suck” b/c the narc sucks the life out of you, like a vampire; narcs are emotional vampires. Anna is no longer actively blogging, but her site is so relevant, so insightful, so powerful, so refreshing and at times, so funny, that I hope Pastor Dave doesn’t mind if I link to it here:
    http://narcissists-suck.blogspot.com/2009/03/malignant-narcissism-brief-overview.html

  61. Penny

    I am re-posting the link to Anna Valerious’s blog, “Narcissists Suck”, b/c I think it was a bad link. I hope this one works, but if not, just go to her blog and type in “betrayal” in the search bar and you can find it. Here is the link again (I hope):
    http://narcissists-suck.blogspot.com/2007/09/betrayal-of-bystanders.html

  62. Penny

    Note: Anna Valerious’ blog is named “Narcissists Suck” b/c narcs sucks the life out of you, like a vampire; narcs are emotional vampires. It isn’t meant to offend or be profane. Anna is no longer actively blogging, but her site is so relevant, so insightful, so powerful, so refreshing and at times, so funny, that I hope Pastor Dave doesn’t mind if I link to it here:
    http://narcissists-suck.blogspot.com/2009/03/malignant-narcissism-brief-overview.html

    • confused

      Penny, thank you so much for reposting! I had tried the link from my phone previously and when it didn’t work I figured it was my phone so I’d try on my computer when I got a chance. This blog and the quoted portion of it is sooo relevant to me and my situation! It helps so much to be able to see my plight in writing as it makes me realize I’m not only NOT ALONE, but that I can also deal with it better knowing what I’m dealing with. Before I came to this blog, I didn’t know there was even a name for what was happening to me. I was just blindsided by it! But this blog, ask of you who’ve been writing, and this latest link has really put this in perspective for me…..the ‘N’ is no longer my problem. She is sick and no matter what I do or say, she’s going to just twist and lie her way through life convincing whoever will listen that I’m the one out to get her and not vice versa..however, I have a little bit to say about the people who believe these lies as for me that has ALWAYS been the problem with all this..how can people who have known me, interacted with me. Seen me in all types of situations and NEVER ONCE seen me act hurtful toward anyone, think that I’d be so mean to this idiot? I don’t hurt anyone. If I have a problem with you, I just walk away and even then, I’m always civil and decent in your presence. I would never be unkind or malicious or snide in my comments and I can tell you why….I don’t get any enjoyment out of seeing people hurting or suffering. In fact I hate it! I love to see people happy, smiling, and in peace! I help lift people up when they’re down…I would never kick them! That being said, I have another view on why people who know you would be so willing to believe this crap about you after knowing you..and believe it or not it can be became they are actually DECENT people.. I don’t have time to share now but will come back on when I have a chance. It may help many of us to overcome the tremendous hurt we feel when realize we’ve been betrayed….I’ll be back 🙂

  63. Penny

    Sorry, everyone, for the multiple posts! Having some ISP issues….!

  64. Amy

    It was so great to read everyone’s posts. I thought there was something wrong with me. I have know my “Narc” since she was 5 although until a couple of years ago, she wasn’t part of my life since we were teenagers. We reconnected and became close the past year, she told me we were like sisters. She doesn’t get along with her brother who is one of my best friends and I defended her when he told me she lied and manipulated people. She joined my sports team to spend more time with me and ended up taking over an event we were planning. As she became more and more “important” to the team, she stopped being supportive of me. She went out of town with our team to a tournament that they won. That day one of our team mates was in a severe car accident. When I called her, her reaction was “Why are you telling me this?”, “I can’t deal with this right now”, “this isn’t a good time”. When she got back and I told her I didn’t like how she reacted and of course, she claimed it was the way I communicated it to her. She began distancing herself from me. When I asked her what I did, she said she was just busy and focusing on the event she was planning. We went from talking 2-3 times a day to not at all. Everytime I posted on our teams facebook page she would post a snotty reply. In one post, she even admitted she had been “pissy” to me. Finally, I got tired of it and snapped back at her….her response was a bunch of angry texts telling me I was nasty and my snapping at her was an ugly quality since she wasn’t doing anything to deserve it. I finally stopped talking to her unless she spoke to me. I then got a text from her brother asking me if I was ready to admit he told me so. Apparently she texted him something nasty about me. I stopped talking to her altogether and avoided her during the event she had planned. On the last day when I walked away from her when she walked up, she got angry and started calling me a lying f@#$ing b@#%h and told me I was tearing her family apart. Apparently, her fiance told her he liked me and didn’t want to hear what she had to say. Next time I saw her, she acted like nothing happened. I can’t do that – I’m totally ignoring her. Of course, almost everyone on the team (there are a few who have seen through her) thinks she is fantastic. I look like an ass. I keep praying that eventually she will show her true self and people will see her for what she is but in the meantime, I am the bad guy. It sucks. I almost thought about quitting the team but I won’t let her take away something that means a lot to me. At least I didn’t lose her brother’s friendship considering I disagreed with him and fought with him defending her….only to have her turn around and do what he said she would do. Any suggestions on how to handle this? Do I pretend that everything is fine and just keep my distance or do I continue to ignore her which will set her off at some point.

  65. Mara

    Okay, so I’m not so sure my friend of over 15 years is a narc, but he seems to fit some patterns in looking back on our relationship. I have in recent years begun a campaign to decrease contact with this person and it seems to be working with little to no retribution. Okay, so what makes me feel like this person was a narc? First off our initial meeting and subsequent relationship, he was stunning, flattering, very intense with me and I developed some feelings for him. I knew he liked attention and I showered him with it, sadly I preferred being alone with him because when we were in a group setting he seemed to treat me like I was insignificant and I often felt stung and belittled by his subtle jokes directed to me. We never progressed to a romantic relationship, he always seemed put off by getting close to me, yet, gave mixed signals, often driving hours on end to see me. I felt like I was the center of his universe and sadly, in those early years, he was the center of mine. After a year of wanting to get closer and hitting walls each time, I decided our relationship would be forever platonic and moved on in my pursuit of romance, he acted supremely jealous, fought really hard to divert my attention from my then boyfriend and often monopolized my time by spending hours on the phone speaking mostly about himself and asking me out but telling me “just us”. Looking back his favorite topic to speak of was himself, to this day I hardly know a thing about his family or his early life. In groups he wanted to be the star, he was always flourishing, speaking loudly over others and re-directing attention toward himself – he loved a captive audience. He knew how to manipulate me emotionally, when my friendship seemed to wane, he’d be super attentive, almost caring and loving toward me – just enough to pull on my heart strings and revive those old feelings I had toward him. Nostalgic manipulation is what I came to know it as, it was so predictable. Then just when I start caring, he’d experience a crisis, however small (missing pet, sick relative, broken down vehicle) and he’d draw me in just that little bit emotionally closer before the door would slam in my face and he’d cut off all contact leaving me wondering what I did wrong or if I’d somehow pushed him too hard emotionally. He’d re-surface months later as though nothing had transpired between us. I see the pattern now, years of this type of behavior (social media made it easier for him to keep tabs on me) with me feeling ripped apart repeatedly to the point I started to wonder if I was crazy, seeing things that weren’t there. My now husband used the phrase narcissistic abuse one night as he was trying to comfort me from another “stab to the heart”. I began researching narcs and found that he fit the pattern but not to the point of using me for anything and I wonder now, what he was even taking from me. Sadly there were times that, since i knew him so well, I knew if I cut off contact with him, he would struggle to re-establish it (i’d continue to ignore his attempts) and then once I re-established contact, I knew he’d do anything for me if I just paid him a few compliments – I learned how to manipulate his friendship back, so sad the things I learned from him. As it sits now, I do not reach out for him. When he does reach out to me, which he still does once or twice a year, I reserve emotion, no longer compliment him and do not entertain his self absorbed stories feigning boredom or make an excuse to end the conversation. He’s getting the hint I assume and seeking his supply elsewhere. It really hurts me that I actually cared for him all those years and this healing phase is quite painful. I have to keep reminding myself about how emotionally destructive he is for me. So yes, I thank you so much for this blog, it has helped me greatly to understand that none of this pain or chaos I’ve literally spent years in is any of my fault. I know how to get back my control again, so thanks again.

  66. Adrienne

    I believe that I was involved with a narcissist. I met him at my Church, ever so often we would talk, and laugh. And over a short time we became interested in being more than friends. He had the boyish innocence about him. He was funny, however he would never show his teeth when he smiled. Later on he told me why. So we began to closer, talked all the time by phone, mainly texting. The few dates we had were fun for the most part. But it bothered me, that he usually wanted to be alone. Even in the relationship, it was like being a robot. No real emotions. He would always keep a straight face, if it had the slightest chance of making him look bad, he wouldn’t do it. He was so into his appearance, And overly concerned with himself. Its like nothing else mattered. We dated for several months, were engaged for like three. I loved him. He met my family, I met his mother by accident. It was like he deliberately do things to hurt me. Something would happen, we would take on the phone for hours and still never get a sincere apology. It would be excuses for why he did what he did. In the course of the relationship, I would be grieved, confused,angry,and depressed and would actually still miss him. It was horable. I couldn’t understand. Everything I invited him to was either a no thank you. Or if yes a complete disappointment. I felt ashamed, and humiliated. He would continue as if nothing ever happened. I still don’t understand why or how you’d say you love somebody and not want to be with physically and emotionally.

  67. wow. i have a friend that just keeps visiting my place until i can’t play the “unavailability game” anymore. then it’s a just a guilt trip for the next two-three hours. and don’t say a word because reaction is just what a narcissist wants. for now, i’m trapped.

  68. deb

    This has happened to me I couldn’t walk away but cared deeply for this friend and saw passed the brokenness and when I started to nit be so available and things were happening in NY life my friend could and would not be a part of it. I told her sad news and needed her then more than ever and she kicked me to the curb..qith no justification except ro say ..thi gs keep happening and I think we should keep our distance it’s just not heathy for me..we have been keeping our distance..I have wanted to check on her and she comes to mind and is heavy on my heart every now and then I always knew when somwthing was going on with her I miss the good times hut ut got rough and I thought also I was trapped I wish things would have been different bit I have to except that she really wasn’t my friend

  69. Name I

    narcissists aren’t bad. I am one but I don’t think I’m %100 but I do admit I am capable of being 100%.
    But I want friends. I have no family and everyone’s left. I just want company and I’m lonely and I want to be loved. So why is this a bad thing? I just don’t know how to get it. I’m not hopeless and you don’t have to get away from me and I try not to just take. But everyone hates narcissists. I didn’t choose to be this way. I just have found that no one stays so why should I be anything but selfish?
    And I’m curious, is this stereotyping or is it for a fact that everyone with this “disorder” has to react in the same way by the book?

    • JEX

      I totally get you! I think I’m narcissistic too.
      Everyone has left me: friends family and I feel lonely. I don’t completely understand why I’m so bad! And yes, I agree since fm everyone leaves and isn’t strong enough to help us understand our mistakes we get worse by thinking “who cares they leave anyway”. I don’t get why it’s a bad thing and I feel bad that everyone hates narcissists, like we’re demons! We can’t help it and we’re as deserving of love as anyone else. It’s just wrong that people encourage others to abandon narcissists just because they can’t handle us and learn to teach us. How are we supposed to act any different if people just walk away without explanation?

      • Cecelia K

        JEX, narcissists don’t get explanations because their friends/spouses/mates/whoever have learned from experience that the N won’t listen. When we have tried to tell Ns what the problem(s) is (are), they get offended and fly into a rage and attack (usually verbally), or they give us the silent treatment, or they punish us in some other way. Have you reacted to anyone this way who tried to tell you what was wrong? And besides, what is stopping YOU from Asking why they left? If you really want to know, and don’t just want to attack and condemn the people, you need to go to them and HUMBLY ask them why they left. No one likes getting verbally attacked, and if that’s what they expect from you, then they are naturally going to avoid getting attacked, especially if they have learned trying to tell you what’s wrong is futile. So Don’t Blame the people you have hurt. Accept responsibility for your hurtful actions. That’s the first step toward healing and reconciliation. But don’t be surprised and don’t blame them if they are hesitant to accept your apology, because we have also learned that narcissistic apologies aren’t usually sincere.

        And No, if you don’t treat people with love, you Don’t Deserve love, just like anyone else. Truthfully, none of us Deserves love, because we are all sinners, and God tells us in His Word, that we actually deserve to spend eternity in Hell, BUT because He loves us unconditionally, He sacrificed His one and only Son to pay the price that We Should have paid for our sins, and then God resurrected His Son, Jesus, from the grave so that He is alive and in Heaven, and “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9). God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.

        And yes, biblically, we are called to love our enemies, those who treat us harshly, but it is extremely difficult to do so, and even though God tells us to love Ns, they still don’t get to feel Entitled to love and kindness when they won’t offer the same to us (or for that matter, even if they do offer love and kindness, but expect something in return).

        That’s great that you have a friend who has stuck by you in spite of how you have treated her, and if your actions have truly improved, even better, but if you still persist in any narcissistic behavior, don’t be surprised, and don’t blame her if she does eventually leave. And JEX, remember, outward behavioral changes aren’t really worth much if you still have a narcissistic/sinful heart. If you have not received Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and repented to God of your sin, and asked Him to give you a new heart, I urge you to do so. Email Pastor Dave if you would like to learn more. I know he would be more than happy to help you.

      • Cecelia K

        I had another some more thoughts… If you know that you mistreat the people whom you resent for leaving, then why do you need an explanation from them for their leaving? IT’S BECAUSE YOU MISTREAT THEM! I think you know that, deep down. They are most likely weary and exhausted from you beating them down all the time, if you are like most narcissists. If you want people to stick around and love you and be your friend, then you have GOT to STOP mistreating them. If you don’t know how to do this, then seek help from a (preferably Christian) counselor. Talk to a pastor of a strong, biblical church. But as many have testified on here, we suspect you DO know how to treat them with kindness and respect, because narcissists typically show love, kindness, and respect when they are surrounded by an audience of people who don’t really know them, or when they want to manipulate the person to get something they want. You know the right thing to do; you just choose not to do it when it doesn’t suit you. And even when you do the right thing, it’s with wrong motives.

        Again, it all comes back to the condition of your heart. You have a heart that is centered on selfish desires (and that’s how we ALL start out – not just you), and Jesus Christ is the only One who can change your heart and give you a new one that is centered on pleasing and glorifying Him. That’s why God created all of us, JEX – to glorify Himself! But because sin entered the world, it separated us from God, and brought His wrath on us, which is why Jesus came – He bore God’s wrath for Our sake on the cross – so we wouldn’t have to. Those who believe this and acknowledge their sin and repent of it and acknowledge and receive Christ as Lord and Savior are no longer under His wrath, but are saved from eternal death and destruction. Those who don’t face an eternity of being separated from God, in Hell – where there will be “weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

        And finally, remember that he who wants friends must show himself friendly (to paraphrase a proverb from the BIble) – but it must be genuine, sincere friendliness out of truly caring about the other person, and not just to get them to be your friend.

    • snowbootz

      I couldn’t help but respond to this thread. Having been the recipient of a narcissist’s jealous, vindictive, and spiteful behavior, I can tell you, no decent, sincere person wants to be around you. Nor should they. Your comments about YOUR loneliness, and desire for ‘friends’ is a testament to your disease. I hope you’re not waiting around for another unsuspecting ‘strong friend’ who can deal with your nonsense to come along so you can fill your narcissistic emptiness at their expense. Instead, try getting some professional help from someone who is paid to understand your hateful and hurtful behavior. If that fails, try seeking out your own kind. That should be a blast for you….

    • Loretta

      I feel the same way about my boyfriend. We’ve had a rough 3 years but still hold on. I have broken up with him so many times over his behavior. He has been good to me and shows a lot of concern for my welfare. Helps me with money, gas and food. We’re an older couple and i think he’s slowing down. He just loves to be loved. I’m a very affectionate person and the more i love him the more he thrives. I have fought over the idea of him being bad. Sure he’s a bit selfish but so are a lot of people. I’ve seen goodness in him and pain. He always tells me that he loves me. It is better to Love than to never have Loved at all with caution. I think age is mellowing him out. Something interesting though. Even though we spend a lot of time together and not fighting, he still says he’s lonely when we’re not together for just a couple days. I think emptiness and loneliness is always with him. God Bless you and may you come to the reality that God is always there for you and God is Love.

  70. Evelyn

    Even though I am not sure, I think my friend is a narcissist.
    I have been friends with her for about 10 years now and I have now noticed the way she acts.
    Now that we are in different schools we see sometimes on weekends. But it is always me who is going to her house and when I have other plans – for example with my other friends or my family – she gets so mad at me and makes me feel so quilty! It’s hard for me to try to please her all the time! She also tries to make me feel bad about myself, like pointing all my flaws and tells how perfect she is.
    And people think she is such a beautiful person just because of her looks. She sometimes acts differently around other people to get them like her and she is acting like they worship her.
    She is also trying to make me jealouse of the most stupidest things… its really stressful!
    I dont know how I can get rid of her because she is making me feel so quilty everytime I try.
    I dont know what to do.

    • fedup

      Stop replying. Don’t answer her calls, texts, social media–avoid her the best you can. That is what I had to do. I just stopped responding. The opposite of love is not hate–it is apathy. So stop caring. Don’t expect yourself to be able to do it right away–it took me 8 months from the conception of realizing how narcissistic my friend was to finally stopping the hang-outs in March 2014. Slowly ease your way out of hanging out with her everytime; let her know you’re BUSY and can’t hang out…She will get the picture.

      • JEX

        Do you think she felt bad about you just leaving her though? I’m not saying your wrong or anything, you’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do! And I know narcissistic people are selfish anyway but don’t you think that’d make it worse?
        I used to be a narcissist but because of a friend who never left and instead taught me the correct way to act, I am much better! So your story just reminds me of myself and how some people slowly left me because I was narcissistic. They slowly got busier and no longer wanted anything to do with me and I didn’t understand why because they didn’t explain and it hurt and so I feel it made my narcissist tendencies to get worse because people abandoned me anyway so why not be selfish? So I’m not trying to start an argument or say you done anything wrong. I was only wondering if you thought about how she might have felt….even if you don’t care. That’s fine 🙂

  71. JEX

    Hi so I think I feel offended by this. Maybe. I think I and most everyone has narcissistic tendencies. And I may be a narcissist a lot but I have reasons and besides, it’s a condition that that person can’t really see in themselves. I’m not saying they’re blameless of course but from my perspective, I have lost so many friend and family (I’m 21 years old), probably because of being narcissistic BUT it still HURT when people started setting boundaries and leaving without much explaining and then I’m left angry and more narcissistic because now I have proof that other people will just leave. So I know it’s hard to change a narcissist and who’d want to be around someone like that? But how I got over the MAJORITY of my narcissistic unruly behavior was someone, a friend, who was severely honest and harsh with me and yet never left. She continually told me what I was doing wrong and what I should do instead and pointing out my flaws and yet loving me without condition and never leaving me. And she really didn’t have time for my behavior or the energy and yet she stayed. If it wasn’t for her, I’d be a really terrible narcissistic, I mean I’d be destroying relationships! Please don’t hate narcissism, it’s not pretty, but we’re also not monsters or demons (not completely), just humans that are tainted. Please be more respectful of mental illness.

  72. Dianne

    I have been a very close friend with an elderly lady for 7 years..i have been her everything as she kept telling me..she made me feel so special. .slowly i stopped going out with other friends and spent all my time with her..which i enjoyed very much we had a lot of fun. .after a while she would make me feel guilty if i had no time or i put my family first…so i always worked it out to make sure i had time for her…she spoke i jumped…people started aaying things about me like i destryed her relationship with her kids and surely she was paying me..she never did..and her children didnt have a lot to do with her b4 me…that why she needed me…always thought she was such a beautiful gentle loving lady….i got sick with a thyroid condition 4 months ago…toxic…when i felt i could not fuction…all of a sudden an old friend if hers starting helping her…we still spoke on the phone and did a small amount together….she appeared very secretive….we wouldnt talk like we used too…i started to feel very insecure…as i loved her with all my heart…starting questioning our friendship…she would gwt all defensive and saying i was attacking her…it would be her yelling at me…this type of thing went on for a few weeks…then a week ago ahe told me she doesnt trust me not to get upset with her again and she wanted me out of her life…i am devastated….thought we could work through it…i supported her through 2 bowel ops… a heart attack…all her bills groceries clothing etc..i got sick and she gave up on me…when she said she wanted me out of her life…b4 she left she asked if i called would u talk to me…we spoke a few times.she said she was confused and didnt no what she wanted…give her a few days to work it out…the next day she said friendship is over….does this lady sound narcisstic. ..not to mention pick on me my family….since the end..her children have contacted me ro see if im ok….

  73. Sarah

    Hi

    I desperately need some help here.

    I have a person I thought was a friend. I confided in her a lot about things that were going with my relationship. Lots of these were extremely damaging when passed onto other people.

    She has a number of children in care and she thought I would help her get her latest child home. She showed me a lot of reports and one described her as having NPD. I didn’t think much of it at the time she was really nice, a lot of the time she appeared to be going out of her way to help me.
    A while ago I began to withdraw from the friendship because she was taking up so much time, I had no time for anything else.

    A few weeks back my partner and I had a fight. I needed to get away for a while and she let me stay with her.

    Things went downhill.
    She started trying to convince me not to move on to another place to live. She somehow convinced me I needed to do things to protect my daughter however I think that as she claims to have experienced violence in all her relationships this was not based on my experience but on her own. I did some then began to think I was going too far. She started saying that I needed a court order so my partner could not contact me and obviously I didn’t think this was in anyway necessary.

    Anyway things started to go really wrong then.

    She came home and was really passive aggressive. I couldn’t work out what was wrong but thought she was just tired.

    I had taken my daughter over to school which she had told me I could not do because I would be putting her at risk. I had no way to get there and she had said she would help by driving me there. She was ‘too busy’. She didn’t know I took my daughter myself until we got home later and little one was in her uniform.

    Then she started asking questions about my dog, we got from a rescue. I didn’t really click on to what was about to happen. Later that night she came home and started being really pleased with herself. I thought she had just been in a bad mood and that was it but no. She claimed the rescue I had the dog from, had been in touch and that as she works there, they had asked her to ‘take control of the dog’. I loved my dog more than words. I didn’t hear anything from the rescue yet but we got into an argument and she started being really horrid saying I couldn’t do this that and the other but that she had been through this all herself and that I had better stay with her in case I had a weak moment and wanted to get in touch with my partner. I decided then to leave.

    I left. Biggest mistake.

    Since then she has unleashed all hell. She contacted my dad who lives in a different country spewing lies and venom. Sent me loads of messages over facebook and I ignored them. She ended up taking the dog by lying to the police, she showed every message about my partner to the police and reported me as missing!! Then she set about contacting social services to try to have my child taken into care. So far this hasn’t happened so instead she went to the ‘father’ of my child who we have not seen for three years and who is an alcoholic to say that she is not safe with me. His friend has now been in touch saying that he contacted her as she could witness that my daughter told this friend my partner brushes her hair too hard????

    I feel like everyone is listening to her even though she is lying. I spoke to her social worker and he apologised as he said he had information that he was not able to share due to confidentiality which would have saved me from all this. I am scared the last person who crossed her was her ex-partner and he is now in prison because in spite of a court order that he has to stay away from her, she encourages him to visit and picks up and brings him a great distance to see her then has him arrested. She asked me to lie (and another friend) to get him to her house then get him to go out remove his stuff and we were supposed to say he had just turned up kicking off. (obviously I didn’t)

    I don’t know what on earth to do she won’t stop till I lose everything. What can I do???

    Thanks

    • Wow! I have heard stories like this, but this is intense! These are just ideas: Go to the police yourself to see if you can get a restraining order against her. She has stolen your dog, lied about you being missing, threatened to separate you from your child, and contacted others to hurt you. Obviously she is unhealthy and unsafe. I would tell the police that you fear she might take your daughter next. Sometimes the reason these people get by with so much is that we are afraid to stand up and hand it back to them. Is there a safe place you can go while this gets worked out? Don’t answer her calls or let her see you or your daughter.

      As I say, these are just ideas. Be strong and stay positive. She has no right to do these things. You were duped by her. That happens. Now that you know, you have to protect yourself and your daughter. She has already done too much.

      What do some of the rest of you think? I will certainly be praying!

  74. ronja

    so almost a year ago i had been looking for a new roommate. I some how found a woman which seemed very charming at first. we would sit and talk and drink together, i now feel like such an idiot for confinding like that in a stranger, but how could i have known she will use everything i told her against me? At that time a guy i have dated had broken up with me. Her boyfriend has broken up with her too so for a couple of months we have been sitting and talking about them. I was still very heartbroken, and I told her I was hoping to get back together with him, and that he treated me very very nicely. she said “well at least you had some one that treated you nicely, my boyfriend was an asshole”. I sensed something was a bit “off” about this woman, like she kept going on about how my relationship had only lasted two months so I should get over it. it seemed quite cold, but had no idea what was yet to come. I have introduced her once to that guy who had broken up with me. she said he seemed quite into me still. at the time he insisted me and him would stay friends, and was showing up at the bar I hang out at almost every day chatting up all my friends. then march that year, as it appears, he had made a move on my roommate via a dating site! at first I was shocked, but I still thought she was at least on my side. and now comes the part where I feel like the biggest idiot ever, because she some how manipulated me into agreeing they go out on a date. she said she never does things like that, he is too short for her anyways, and if I refuse it would seem like its because I told her to and I want to appear “cool” in front of him. I was very drunk and some how agreed, regretted it after a second but it was too late. the next day she tells me she wants to go out with him. I told her it’s ok, but I want her to move out of my flat. all of a sudden she became agressive, started shouting “I could see this guy if I didn’t live here”. she said “I am not your friend I don’t owe you anything. (even though she had been to my parents house for dinner, I invited her to meet my friends) I was somewhat scared, but still had no idea what kind of person I was dealing with. in the end she said she wont do anything with him, I went abroad. she even sent me a hearts message on fb on my bday, asked my friend what gift she can buy me. but as I got back, though she was seeing three other guys – she told me she had slept with my x. I was completely crushed and mad. Luckily I had somewhere else to stay, but i wrote to her please move out. she said “you know I can ask you to leave” (legaly we were both on the lease, but of course she had been there for only two months and I have been there for two years so telling me that was very unfair) she also started denying everything, saying I told her I got over him, that we were not friends, and accusing me of something that happened months ago when I left the door of the flat open. she also said “you never invited me to meet your friends”. which of course, I have, and the opposite was true because I asked her to find out if I can come to a trip with her and her friends and she didnt even reply to me. after two months that awful woman has finally moved out (only later on I found out she had moved in with that guy!) leaving me completely crushed, with anxiety attacks, and the worst part – blaming myself. i went to berlin for a few months, where I ran into her x boyfriend. he then told me he reckons she has NPD and when I started reading about it it all made perfect sense. I stopped blaming myself because I understand she used my weakness against me, and probably would have seen him anyways since she has no regard for other humans but her. I had also learnt she has been physically violent with her ex, had crazy jealousy fits, and also that she tried to get back together with him while she is already living with my x (which made it obvious for me that its not some great love or something like that, he is just another victim of hers) she told her x that me and that guy were not even going out but only sleeping around, that i was crazy and unstable and so on. my friends were amazing and stopped contact with both assholes which im very greatfull for , but still I am very much angry and since its a small town I still have to see them from time to time. thinking about his friends (some are my acquaintaces too ) meeting her and taking her side, not understanding what a bi**ch she is just makes me cringe. It does help when I read what other ppl with similiar experiences have been through, this experience of something lingering long after the story is over, like an unresolved issue. people dont understand why im still hung up on this, and its so hard to explain to some one who hasnt been involved with such an awful person.

  75. ronja

    oh ye also forgot to mention she kept saying “I’m getting very tired of this story” or “shit happens in life” which is of course another thing I realized narcsists do because they cannot feel another person pain, especially if its inflicted by them.

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