It can be very difficult when you meet someone that seems to have a great sense of self only to find out that is the only sense that they have. Narcissistic personality disorder can be very hard to live with. Discovering that you are dating someone that has narcissistic personality disorder can be a real let down and it may be something that you cannot easily detect at first.
This disorder in named for Narcissus of Greek legend who fell in love with his own reflection. Dating someone with narcissistic disorder is sort of like living with someone that loves themselves above all else but it is not quite as simple as that.
These are high maintenance people that “work harder than anyone else” that “dress better than anyone else” that are “smarter” “faster” “prettier” “ more loving” you name it and they have the market cornered on everything and anything.
Combined with all of the above a true narcissist does not have a lot of empathy for other people or their situations, they also require constant attention which can quickly get old and draining.
The signs do not typically present themselves right away. You may think that this person is a great person that takes good care of themselves. They may seem to just be self-involved at times and the little clues over time become much more obvious.
When you are dating a narcissist you will notice that they dominate every conversation allowing you to barely get a word in edge wise. Most of the conversations that they hold are relative to who they are and what they want you to understand about their life or their situation.
Another clear sign is when someone gets “annoyed” when you try to take over the conversation or even worse they blow you off and just talk over you. Of course if what you have to say is about the person than the conversation would be fine and they will gladly join in.
Envy of others that verge on obsessive is another sign and the belief that people are envious of them is also prevalent. There is also an element of having to associate only with people that are of like greatness.
There will also be a load of conversations about why family and friends are inferior.. They will find fault with both yours and their own friends and family. They will find error with just about everyone and the closer you get the quicker you will become the main focus of the belittling and rude comments.
Everyone likes to have their ego stroked once in a while but a narcissist demands it. If you cannot than you will likely not be together for too long. They demand to be told that they are the best at just about everything because they really do believe it and take serious insult if you should complement someone else.
Criticism even in the smallest form can cause a reaction that ranges from sulking to throwing a full out grown up tantrum with banging things and vehement denial that you are mistaken.
Unfortunately this type of behavior escalates as you proceed forward with the relationship. The more comfortable the narcissist is with the relationship the more obvious the symptoms of this disorder become.
Understand that all of the symptoms are actually cover up for feelings of insecurity, shame or feelings of inadequacy. There is no known cause for this type of personality disorder and the treatment is largely dependent on the participation of the narcissist, which can be a difficult. Most narcissists do not believe that there is anything wrong with them.
Can you help a narcissist? “Curing” a narcissist is not something you can take on alone. It can take literally years for a narcissist to readjust their ways. There are no quick fixes and there are no medications that can treat this personality disorder.
Only psychotherapy can help and there is no particular time limit. It can take years to help a narcissist to get to a place where they can be empathetic to others and find a way to focus on something besides themselves. Successful treatment requires 100% cooperation. Of course as mentioned earlier to get treatment one would need to realize that something is not quite right. Narcissists are not typically willing to come to terms with this disorder so most do not seek help or do they get help.
If you are dating a narcissist than you are at a crossroads and have to decide if you can deal with the situation as is or if it is best for you to leave the relationship. If you are not up to the challenges it is best if you leave the relationship or you will find yourself in a very unhappy place.