The Most Cruel Things Narcissists Do

I don’t need to remind you that narcissists are some of the cruelest people on the planet.

Intent on destroying you and everything in your life, they won’t stop or care, or even be aware of your boundaries – because they have none for themselves.

A lot of people come to me and ask me what the very cruelest things narcissists are capable of doing, because they want to protect themselves from the worst behavior possible.

What did I do with the answers I gave them?

I compiled them for you – my wider audience.

So here’s what I know to be the cruelest things that narcissists do.

They Avoid Intimacy

The first on my list is incredibly cruel, in particular if you are in a relationship with a narcissist.

They avoid intimacy. 

Intimacy isn’t avoided because neither party is actually displaying an interest in it or because it isn’t top of the list of both people within that relationship.


Intimacy is avoided as a way for the narcissist to punish the person they’re with. What you have to remember is that any relationship with a narcissist is superficial. It is like bathing in shallow waters.

Because there is no depth, two people cannot connect further than the initial stages. 

It can be the same for all kinds of intimacy; it doesn’t need to be physical. Intimacy can be how two people connect and show their vulnerable sides to each other.

This can be found in friendships as well as romantically connected individuals, but either way, expect a very cruel twist of the narcissist trait to appear through lack of any form of intimacy.

The Narcissist’s Limited Capacity

The challenge the narcissist has (that they will never dream of telling you), is that any form of intimacy is deemed as harmful. What if they reveal their true selves to somebody, only for it to be brutally rebuffed? It’s far better, surely, to just put up those walls of steel and act like intimacy is for the weak only. 

Attachment issues are prevalent in narcissists. They don’t see the value or even safety in relationships, so intimacy is seldom with the effort.

This isn’t to say they don’t want closeness, rather they view intimacy as suspicious.

To the narcissist – intimacy is a threat of so many things, entangled with disappointment and abandonment. They won’t want to invest their time if their time will end up being wasted or abused by the innocent party.

Sounds highly ironic, doesn’t it?

Never Confuse Intimacy with Sex

Sex and intimacy with a narcissist looks very different. The narcissist will see sex as an act. It is a way to express a desire that has a start and an end, but to go deeper into other acts of love, such as trust, talking, honesty, openness – these are the kinds of intimacy a narcissist will deprive you of, and that is very cruel.

They Breadcrumb

Breadcrumbing is highly destructive to the person on the receiving end. 

What exactly is breadcrumbing?

Do you ever feel that the tiny little snippets the narcissist gives you in terms of mental or emotional attention goes such a long way? It’s amazing how they can make you feel with even just the smallest fraction possible.

Why is that?

Well. Let me tell you.

Narcissists use breadcrumbing as a form of validation. The one thing you crave the most is to be locked in a permanent state of safety and love, and when that isn’t felt by you, you will look for anything, and I mean anything to make you feel those things are still there in some way. 

Give a Little, Take the World

The narcissist will cruelly hand over the minimum needed to make you feel on top of the world, like a drop of rain during a drought. The problem is that tiny drop feels great in the moment but does nothing in the long term to make your world a more balanced place.

The narcissist will act like they’re giving you everything you need, meanwhile you are settling for what is a ridiculously unfair gesture.

Breadcrumbing is when you are so hungry for food, that when you finally sit down at the table to eat, those few crumbs look amazing. If you were to zoom out and see them for what they really are, you will notice how they go nowhere to nourish you. 

They asked me to dinner!

They paid me some attention.

They didn’t answer his phone once.

They told me how attractive I look.

They remembered my birthday!


These are basic things most healthy relationships should be seeing. 

Those little things are enough for people who, for a long time, may not have been seen, but in narcissistic relationships, these nice little things appear after a period of devaluation, so draw you back in.

You deserve better than scraps. 

Future Faking

I will call you later.

I’ll text you later.

Oh, I’m so sorry. I fell asleep.

Work got busy.

I totally forgot, I had so much on. 

Future faking is so sinister. It is a strong form of manipulation by keeping you hooked with promises you want to hear that never appear in reality.

They want you to hear what you want to hear without considering that you assume they will keep their word. 

Some Day

Ah yes. Some day.

I’d love to marry you someday.

I want three kids with you someday.

We should take a holiday, just us, someday. 

Let’s travel the world together someday!

We should definitely do that…someday.

When do these days come?

They never do, of course. They cruelly only remain in your dreams and wishes, but future faking will be so cleverly laid out for you that you won’t see the lies or excuses as anything other than, “Oh well, I guess they were busy today, that’s too bad. Next time!”

Keeping your hopes up like this is meant to keep you hanging around. They don’t necessarily want you, but they don’t want your supply to leave either because you make them feel good and boost their confidence.

They need that around to replace their inability to provide it for themselves. 

Reassurance Without Proof

The narcissist will delve into the world of manipulation by coaxing you to do something just to be with them.

They promise and reassure you that they will take care of you so you can pursue your dreams, and then leave you financially dependent on them. Once you’re in that spot, they can physically exert much more on you than before. 

There is never proof in future faking, but it doesn’t stop those being promised from looking for it. 

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