The Insults You Hear in a Narcissistic Relationship

Many people don’t even know what a healthy relationship looks like. Hearing an insult to those in a narcissistic relationship may just be a normal, everyday experience felt and experienced – but it shouldn’t be!

Insults, by and large, are not a part of a healthy relationship. 

In narcissistic relationships, they are prevalent. 

You’re the worst.

I can do better than you.

Are you sure you’re happy with what you’re wearing?

The way you wrap gifts is absolutely terrible. 

Insults have contempt, and they intend to hurt and devalue another person. There’s nothing funny about them, and the feeling of hurt they leave you with are signs that you are in a narcissistic relationship.

So, how can you override the dominant word of the narcissist, and get your power back?

Name Calling

Narcissists love to call names. It seems like an odd thing to love, and it is. That’s why it’s right up the narcissists’ street to do so. 

It’s in their very nature to call you the things that they are. If that seems confusing, think about how you might be called a pig for eating quickly, or treating yourself to a bar of chocolate. What about being called drab because you aren’t all dressed up at a certain time.

These are learned insults the narcissist has picked up along their journey of life. Likely it came from childhood, seeing in action a narcissistic relationship between their parents take shape before their eyes.

The narcissist has learned that to make you feel bad – they will call you names.

Usually the name is a reflection on themselves that they’re too afraid to admit to being.

Diminishment of your Abilities

You’re such a terrible cook.

You really can’t knit to save your life.

Anything you put your hand to, or feel you’re good at is crossed out and tossed in the trash by the narcissist.

They don’t want to see you being good at anything; if you are, they won’t like it because it isn’t them being good at it.

How dare you show your talents off? The narcissist won’t have it.

Personal Insults

If I were with you solely for physical intimacy, this relationship would last only a few days. 

What a way to cut into your personal confidence – by calling anything personal to you out in the first place. This is how the erosion begins. 

Narcissists will do this to remind you that you’re so bad at something that nobody else could want or desire you. 

What does that leave you with?

It leaves you with no choice but to stay with them, because the alternative has somehow been made to look even more terrible than what you currently have. 


Your top doesn’t suit your features.

Are you sure you’re happy with what you’re wearing?

Now – these comments are less directly insulting. The narcissist isn’t telling you that you look horrible, but they are doing something much more covert.

The narcissist is asking you to question yourself and challenging what you look like so that you feel bad about yourself.

These are still insults, and the narcissist knows exactly what they are doing when they raise an issue about how you look. Remember, they want you to agree with them and choose to wear something different. 


Likely because you looked absolutely beautiful, and they felt threatened by it.


I don’t like the bedsheets you put on the bed this morning. Why do you insist on putting flowers/stars/anything at all on things when you know I don’t like them?

I wish you understood how much I hate your chicken curry. Not being funny – it’s just a preference.

Ah yes, looking like they are doing you a favor by telling you what they don’t like so that you can appease them by making or doing what they do claim to like. 

Don’t be surprised when these types of insults change, and next week the narcissist loves stars or your chicken curry. They want to keep you guessing their next move because they believe a healthy relationship is based on inconsistency and goalpost moving.

Choices you Make

It isn’t unusual for a narcissist to insult the choices you make.

Whether that means deciding to learn a language (why bother?), joining a fitness class (you don’t need to do that; you look fine as you are), or joining a walking group (I can walk with you if you want? You don’t need a group for that).

The narcissist is insulting your ability for free choice by pretending they know what’s best for you and how they can optimize your time without you going out and becoming independent and making new friends. 

They would rather insult your curiosity to try new things by bombarding you with opportunities to spend more and more time with them – something you might be keen to avoid.

If it Harms – it’s Unsafe

If the insults of a narcissist are harming you – you are not in a healthy relationship.

There is a difference between soft-hearted jibes and pure insults meant to hurt and cause pain. If you knew you were hurting somebody, you stopped doing whatever was causing the pain.

Insults can include body language and tone – and all fit into the concept of insulting behavior. 

Insults are a way of communicating contempt with somebody, and you shouldn’t have to listen to or tolerate any of them, especially if you feel the insults are changing who you are as a person. 

This leads to an unsafe and insecure union, and the longer you stay in it without changing your boundaries, the worse you will feel.

The Narcissists ‘Love Language’ is Intended to Dominate

The insult is known as the narcissist’s love language. They think they are doing you a favor by being honest and can often say, “I thought you valued honesty in a relationship? I was just trying to be honest.”

Don’t buy it. 

They cannot use your natural and normal love of loyalty and honesty to make you feel terrible about yourself, nor should they be allowed to do so. 

They Aren’t ‘Joking’

One last thing to remember is that no matter what insult you hear from a narcissist, never assume that they’re making it better by telling you that they were ‘only joking’ after the insult. 

You shouldn’t accept hurtful comments based on the belief that they were just messing around and looking for a laugh because the laugh is never at anybody else’s expense. 

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