The Narcissist and Rejection: What Happens When a Narcissist is Rejected?

When we are rejected from someone we care about, we tend to take the rejection particularly hard. What tears us apart is the blow that this rejection leaves on our ego. What will happen when you start ignoring the Narcissist? How will he or she deal with this rejection?

How Do Narcissists Act or Deal With Rejection?

The narcissist has that kind of enormous reaction to even the slightest (perceived or real) criticism or disagreement as if it were outright rejection. The narcissist is constantly on the lookout for slights. He is hyper-vigilant. He perceives every disagreement as criticism and every critical remark as complete and humiliating rejection: nothing short of a threat.

‘Narcissism’ includes a person’s idea that he or she is superior to others. A narcissist believes that he has attained perfection and has strong feelings of entitlement. Narcissists seek attention by whatever means possible in order to boost their self-perception. The term for this attention seeking is Narcissistic Supply because the compliments, fear, and admiration are supplying the ego.

Narcissistic Injury

When there is any kind of threat to his belief about self, a defensive stance is taken. Narcissistic Injury is any threat, real or imagined, to the narcissist’s grandiose self-perception (known as the False Self) as perfect, omnipotent, omniscient, and entitled to special treatment and recognition, regardless of his actual accomplishments (or lack thereof). Narcissists invariably react with Narcissistic Rage to Narcissistic Injury. Contrary to common opinion, Narcissistic Rage is not a reaction to stress – it is a reaction to a perceived slight, insult, criticism, or disagreement-all considered acts of rejection in the mind of a narcissist.

Facing Narcissistic Injury can cause people with narcissism to act aggressively. Narcissistic Rage is the term used to describe this aggression which can include violence. The anger that comes out as a response to criticism can be directed toward others or to the self.

Narcissistic Rage

Self-directed Narcissistic Rage is a common reaction to Narcissistic Injury. The narcissist turns the rejection and criticism inward. Shame, anxiety, and sudden depression occur with the merest slight or criticism. Outward rage is usually directed specifically toward the people who criticized the narcissist. In extreme cases, a narcissist singles out anyone who resembles the critical person.

The narcissist actively solicits Narcissistic Supply – compliments, admiration, subservience, attention, being feared – from others in order to sustain his fragile and dysfunctional ego. Thus, he constantly courts possible rejection, criticism, and disagreement. The narcissist is, therefore, dependent on other people. He is aware of the risks associated with such all-pervasive and essential dependence. He resents his weakness yet dreads possible disruptions to the flow of his drug: Narcissistic Supply. He is caught between the rock of his ‘habit’ and the hard place of his frustration. No wonder he is prone to raging, lashing and acting out, and to pathological, all-consuming envy (all expressions of pent-up aggression).

How Will The Narcissist React To Rejection?

Narcissists perceive every disagreement – let alone criticism – as nothing short of a threat. Most narcissists react defensively to this. They become indignant, aggressive, and cold. They detach emotionally for fear of yet another Narcissistic Injury. They devalue the person who made the disparaging remark, the critical comment, the unflattering observation, the innocuous joke at the narcissist’s expense. By holding the critic in contempt, by diminishing the stature of the harsh conversant – the narcissist minimizes the impact of the disagreement or criticism on himself.

Like a trapped animal, the narcissist is forever on the lookout… Was this comment meant to demean him? Was this utterance a deliberate attack? Gradually, his mind turns into a chaotic battlefield of paranoia and ideas of reference until he loses touch with reality and retreats to his own world of fantasized and unchallenged grandiosity.

Interestingly, when the disagreement or criticism or disapproval is public, the narcissist tends to regard it as Narcissistic Supply! (“Any publicity is good publicity”). Only when they are expressed in private – does the narcissist rage against them.

Types of Narcissistic Rage

Narcissistic Rage is a reaction to Narcissistic Injury. Rage has two forms:
I. Explosive – The narcissist erupts, attacks everyone in his immediate vicinity, causes damage to objects or people, and is verbally and psychologically abusive.

II. Pernicious or Passive-Aggressive – the narcissist sulks, gives the silent treatment, and is plotting how to punish the transgressor and put her in her proper place. These narcissists are vindictive and often become stalkers. They harass and haunt the objects of their frustration. They sabotage and damage the work and possessions of people whom they regard to be the sources of their mounting frustration.

Anxiety and Rejection

The narcissist has a limited and underdeveloped spectrum of emotional reactions. Anxiety characterizes all his interactions with the opposite sex and any situation in which there is a remote possibility that he would be rejected or abandoned. Anxiety is an adaptive mechanism; it is the internal reaction to conflict. The anxiety is because he needs the relationship more than others do.

The termination of a relationship represents rejection and abandonment, which the narcissist fears most. The narcissist would rather pretend that a relationship is still valid than admit to the demise of it. He doesn’t violate the relationship “contract” because he is afraid of the reprisals and of the emotional consequences. But this is not to be confused with developed morals. When confronted with better alternatives – which more efficiently cater to his needs – the narcissist annuls or violates his contracts without thinking twice.

Moreover, not all contracts were created equal in the narcissistic twilight zone. It is the narcissist who retains the power to decide which contracts are to be scrupulously observed and which offhandedly ignored. The narcissist determines which laws (social contracts) to obey and which to break.

The narcissist regards abandonment or rejection by his emotional-sexual partners as a final verdict concerning his very ability to have such relationships in the future. He is assured that his partner was uniquely equipped to succeed in their relationship and he becomes frightened.

Why the fear? Because if this partner, as qualified as she was, as desirous of him as she was, failed to sustain the relationship – surely, no one else is likely to succeed. The narcissist believes that he is doomed to an existence of loneliness and destitution. He stands no chance of ever having a resilient, healthy relationship with another partner.

The narcissist would do anything to avoid this conclusion. He begs his partner to return and re-establish the relationship, no matter what transpired. Her very return proves to him that he is worthy, the preferred alternative, someone with whom maintaining a relationship is possible.

The narcissist is mortally terrified of being abandoned by his partner. And ignoring him can make the narcissist jealous. This fear drives him to minimize his interactions with his partner to avoid the inevitable pain of rejection. This, in turn, leads exactly to the feared abandonment. The narcissist knows that his behavior instigates that which he is so afraid of. In a way he is happy about it, because it gives him the illusion that he is in exclusive control of the relationship and of his own fate.

Ultimately, the narcissist loses his partners in all his relationships. He hates himself for it and is enraged. This constant inner turmoil generates unremitting fear manifested in the form of anxiety attacks, or an anxiety disorder. In the course of such life crises, the narcissist briefly believes that he is intrinsically defective and dysfunctional when it comes to establishing and to maintaining relationships (which is true!)

Disclaimer: In this article I chose the Narc to be Male but of course this can also be the other way around. Narcissism is not gender specific.

References Used for the article: What happens when the narcissist is rejected

  • I recently left a Narcissist after a 5 month relationship. He had been cheating on me with several women.
    What should I be prepared for regarding any reaction from him?

    • Lots and lots and lots and lots etc. of lies, to you and to the other women. Don’t believe he has ‘let go’ of any of them, he has simply left them ‘hanging’ in case it doesn’t work out with you. Get rid of him NOW! Good luck!

  • I just want to point out that not all narcissists are men! My estranged wife is definitely a narcissist. To Jan above be prepared for lots of made up lies to be spoke of you by your ex.

  • I’m divorcing my narcissist husband after 23 years of marriage and three children. After just turning 50 I choose not to live out my later years walking on eggshells, being bullied, which lead to an unhappy life. He only gets gratification when he brags about his family, while bullying us behind the scenes and anyone else who he thinks is below him in public (waitresses, cashiers, receptionists service workers). He is very controlling as well. Is there any chance he may get dangerous? I have had concerns occasional behavior that seems unbalanced. He also has anxiety for which he has treated with Valium for about 18 years.

  • My mother is a Narcissist and I left her after my dad died. 13 years later we are talking again but nothing has changed, if anything she got worse. Can you believe she is jealous of the relationship my brother and I have amazing! She has now become scary in the way she talks and threats she makes I don’t know what to do has anyone else gone through this? Please help cause I feel like I’m going crazy with the her tantrums then the next day she acts like nothing ever happened… Help

    • Read about daughters of narcissistic mothers. It will define your pain as of the author of the website knew you. I’m am also a daughter of narcisist mother. Be aware that we tend to welcome a lot of people that are toxic to our lives because of that relationship.

      • Good Lord, no s**t huh? I’m 61. Divorced from a narc after 18 years. Did trauma rehab – when someone strangles you, you do sort of go numb!! The purpose of my response – yes, we ARE magnets for that which we haven’t “healed” in ourselves – it comes to us in the nicely wrapped up package of toxic individuals. So glad to have done work, and continue to do so, to keep my sphere clear of that garbage. It’s a challenge in these times, but being “awake”, finally, makes all the difference!

        • So happy for your release of this,I have a circle of narcs around us,it’s aweful,trying to break free????

  • Thank U for a great website.

    I grew up with a narcissistic mother & I have just recently pinpointed this issue. Now I’m realizing that 2 of my oldest female friends also are serious narcissists! One of them I asked for a 6 months break, because I’m going through therapy & need peace to do this work/repair on myself. It’s very hard to come to terms with the fact my mother didn’t/wasn’t able to love me. When confronted with the “rejection” my friend freaked out on me in emails. She tried to keep the contact by saying she had a gift she wanted to send to me etc. In a sober language I refused the acceptance of a “gift” & told her that I will see her in 6 months.
    With the other friend it’s much easer, because if I don’t contact her, she doesn’t contact! Maybe except for X-mas where she likes to gather people & show of herself, her home, her family & those of her friends who are highly educated – just like herself – & praise/admire her for just about anything!!
    Here comes the HIGHLIGHT OF MY STORY: On & off I have suffered from bullimia for many years. Having the realization of understanding the dysfunctional dynamics I have accepted for so many years (I turned 50 in August), moving on to working in therapy with myself has made my bullimia slowly vanish! Hoooooorraaaayyyy! I don’t find myself constantly thinking about food/candy/chocolate/nuts/chips! A couple of times I’ve even forgotten to eat!? This has all happened within 2 months!?
    I know this is going to be an ongoing process for the rest of my life, but I embrace that fact. I look forward to really accepting what these women have done to me, move on without my old friends & try to maintain a relation with my parents for the sake of my beloved 8 yrs. old nephew. I can do it – U can do it!

  • I was friends with a narcissistic person at my job for a short period of time until I started noticing how I bad I felt being around her, it was as though her very presence debilitated me. It was so strange because she was able to brainwash almost everyone around her, the managers, clients, literally everyone. When I showed any sign of rebellion, her “crew” and even some people closest to me would quickly shut me down and tell me that I was jealous of her. While this particular narcissist was highly attractive, I wasn’t in any way shape or form jealous of her, because thats just not who I am. She literally brainwashes everyone into making her the center of their world. It is honestly the weirdest creepiest thing. Anyways after a while of her toxic behavior I just stopped responding to her altogether and completely avoided her. I deleted her from facebook and she’d literally keep requesting me, it got to the point where I thought she was stalking me. I’d see her everywhere around the office holding up her facade. My best advice is to avoid these people at all costs… they will literally suck away your joy and happiness.

  • Don’t be scared, keep calm and ignore them. That’s all you really have to keep in mind. Then you simply watch them work their arses off trying to get your attention. They will find a multitude of ways to do this but keep your cool and eventually it becomes hilarious watching them get all worked up over the lack of attention. An insulting sarcastic comment also does the trick then back to the original state of ignoring. F**k these people and all their ways of subduing us. They are empty underneath.

    • So true! That was very well said. These narcissistic individuals are literally draining and always want to have their way. Once you start ignoring them they do everything they can to get into your good graces.

    • I’ve been researching what the narc fears most. We, the ex abused need to learn all we can and fight them using our wealth of knowledge. Get to know how they operate. I’m going to a counselor to document all the abuse for the D-day event. It will be the greatest show on Earth. Starring my ex the dramatist. She is real good. She got in with the big money people. She gets bored quickly. I don’t expect her to last long and already signs of crumbling. I pray to God, go get her. She will be the cuckoo in the courtroom. I refuse to be belittled and raked over the coals after she left me and my son. I told her good riddance right in front of my pastor. Christians, don’t even tell me I need to be reconciled or that I don’t have grounds for divorce. You tell me that after living in Hell for the past 5 years.

  • I am smack bang in the middle of a narcotic rage by an ex who kicked off just before xmas and because i blocked every avenue of contact has managed to get to my children and friends with awful vile cursing messages to hurt and scare me.. Had non stop texts of how hevwas going to hurt me and mine and damage our cars and priority etc etc ..posted my name photo and address on facebook. Have had to get police involved. PHEW. That was good getting that off my chest. Thankyou for this site. Happy new year everyone. :). Polo.

  • Over the last three years I have realised that the behaviour of my mother and sister has a name. Narcissism. Mother lied, used money as a weapon, put me down, took my paintings and was totally self absorbed often losing her temper. My sister is even worse. She rages at me and terrifies me. She puts me down, thinks she is wonderful, in fact she ticks every one of the boxes. My ex. Was narcissistic too! Maybe after years of their behaviour I felt comfortablewith this? Who knows. But you can escape. I left my ex. He killed himself 5 years after. My mother died last weekend. Hurrah! My sister went on a rage and I threw her out of my car. No longer could she or my mother bully me. I used to call them the old bats and avoid them as much as possible. I just have to get through the funeral…and I will close the door to that terrifying chapter. I now have a lovely relationship with a normal man. I have three beautiful well balanced children and some truly supportive friends.

  • My Marist discarded me after I said I didn’t want to go out one night. I was suppose to be her puppet I suppose but she took up with another man right away. New , old I don’t know but called me twice with butt calls when she was out clubbing let me hear her in the background laughing having fun, band playing. Haven’t heard a peep for 5 weeks. Did run into her one night at a pub. I ignored her , she sat there looking at me like that’s right I dumped you. So I haven’t attempted to contact her and hopefully she will never need me again .she is attractive so doesn’t have a problem finding willing men which of course in known to me she was doing all along.

    • iv just left a narcissistic controlling manipulative patronising cheat he’s only just admitted it but I left him 3 and half months ago which he had no idea as I work away and told him I was staying with family to help out with somethings they needed help with as they lived along way from were I was living with him. In that time I got a flat of my own and once he went off on his selfish holiday on his own I went back to the house and got my belongings and told him iv left him and I know everything about you and a woman you was seeing when we lived in spain, then I blocked him on fb and what’sapp. A week and half later he sent me an email which I didn’t think he could send as thought I blocked him on that too but it was sent from his new email address, telling me yes something happened with me and this woman but was only the once and will never happen again and wanted me to try again and it’s cost me the woman I love so dear. I told him no don’t want you back and told him more and he knows I know more and he hasn’t messaged back since.

  • I notice that this essay is extremely sexist as you point the narcissist as being a male and the person dealing with the narcissist as being female . . . That’s not how it works. It is not gender specific. Also, to deliberately divide positive as being female and negative as being male is really telling about the ridiculous sexist garbage being put out in the MSM. SAD.

  • I was in a relationship with a Narc for about three years. At first I didn’t quite notice it or at least it wasn’t often enough and later was in utter disbelief as to what was happening. I thought possibly he had a learning disability, I thought he had a complex, I thought he was hypersensitive then after a while I came to the conclusion that something just wasn’t right with him. He would say my facial expressions made him feel like I would attack him and accused me of being violent. I never touched him mind you. I always stood my ground with him though and I think that frustrated him to no end. Our last interaction resulted in him physically attacking ME. I needed ex-rays because I thought my jaw might have been dislocated. It actually wasn’t the first time he hit me but this time was scary! He gone now by order of protection. I have peace in my life now.

  • Very interesting article and hits the nail on the head. I just broke up with my Narc Girlfriend and it is one of the most difficult things to do after trying to break up with her for several months. I finally told her I can’t do this anymore, but she turned it around on me to make me feel like I was the one responsible for everything and that she broke up with me. Physically, she is the most beautiful woman that I have ever been with, she is not a mean person at all, she just only cares about herself. She is Colombian and without a visa, so over the last 2 years I visited her 10 times, well tried to visit her because the last 2 times she met with me for only 3 hours and that was to buy her clothes. Bought her a plane ticket to visit me in another city, had me go to the airport and wait for her to arrive for 4 hours and finally told me that she didn’t get on the plane because she didn’t feel like traveling. I supported her financially for 2 years, supported her family, but none of that mattered. I told her that birthday’s mean a lot to me and I would love to get something special from her, maybe a special message on facebook or something. She was too busy to do that, but promised to do something special for Christmas….not even a Merry Christmas, then promised me she had a surprise on New Years for me; nothing again. I had to tell her that I deserve to have my needs met, to be treated better, and receive absolutely nothing from the relationship. She promised to change, but actions were never congruent with her words. During weekends I wouldn’t hear from her, maybe a message early Friday morning, then she would ignore me until Monday or Tuesday. I told her that I am fine with not talking every day, but at least respect me to tell me that she won’t be available. Her response was that she is not my secretary. So this is what happened when I had to end things.

    She is the type Type II Narc listed above, passive aggressive. When I tried to confront her and discuss issues in the past, she would do one of three things when I ask her difficult questions. 1. Pick out one piece of what I said and turn that around into why she is a victim. 2. Answer only one question that is benign or respond with a different subject so I never had any resolution. 3. She would ignore me for days to punish me for her Narc Injury. When we broke up, there was no discussion about things, she first blocked me from all social media accounts and then changed her phone number, yes over the top, but that is what she did. She would tell me things like she is not going to work because she doesn’t feel well and get angry at me for contacting her later in the day because she was at work. In the past someone posted a snapchat of her drunk and kissing another man, when I confronted her about it she told me that I didn’t see what I saw and that is the way people dance in Colombia (plausible deniability). I would ask how her night was in the morning, she would tell me that she was at home, but a few minutes later tell me that she was going home. Confronting her about this, she said that she spent the night at her mothers home and that was what she was referring to. After 2 years I told her that my expectation was that she finally add me as her boyfriend on facebook and at least post a picture of us together since she has pictures posted with her and her male ‘friends’; she would promise and promise, but refuse to do that for me.

    I learned that it was all about control, when she knew that there was something that I really wanted, she would dangle the carrot in front of me, but never actually follow through with anything. She knew birthdays were important to me – by wishing me a happy birthday which is what I wanted she would give up control. Facebook was important to me – by adding me on facebook she would give up control. And the list goes on. For anyone in a relationship with an Narc, you need to get out of it if you ever want to be happy again.

    • wow, im have a similar tale, im an absolute secret after a year yet they are gathering followers every day and i dont exist, im told its my insecurity, etc, blocked from all media yet expected to foot the bill and take care of business and im the damaged one.

  • Hello guys,

    How this is me. How do I recover from NPD. Is it paradoxical that i am trying to recover just to get the grace points after rejection? Everything said here sounds exactly like me.

  • Wow

    I am also going to be 50 soon and have realized my mother is a Narc.

    Sadly i am and have been a family business since i was 14 years old. I have been added as a minor partner about 8 years ago.
    The partnership is just another angle to control me and my family. I have two kids and have been married for 23 years.
    Its so hard to be happy w controlling narc mother. When something good happens to me she acts out strangly. Making me feel badly or diminishing me in public and more often behind closed doors. So it feels like its not worth me trying to be or have success.
    All this time i have been berated ” whats wrong with you, your crazy,nuts,nuts,why do you have to be like that, you dont like me,”. Sadly didnt realize she was manipulating my father and only sister behind closed doors with this bs for many many years. Had no idea and always wondered why they couldnt see my points of being mistreated and controlled.

    Always thought it was just me.

    Now realizing what i have let her do to me i have serious frustration,anger and resentment.

    Recently i have extremly limited my exposure with my mother. But she has been continuing gaslighting me in all the ways she can.

    I read recenrly never let a narc know your true fears. Well i have made this mistake many times with her so she has a truckload of buttons she can push. I wish i would have realized this earlier.

    I dont feel it is ever going to end.

    Financially i am tied to the business and believe leaving would create all sorts of issues w family amd all partners as well as my financial future.

    Someone recently told me its not worth your sanity.

    I am now again contemplating leaving and starting over for my sanity as well as my wifes sanity as she is completly sic and tired of all this.
    She realized this many years ago has been since forgotten by the narc mother

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  • I am reading something I have never found in all other reading materials and research I have come across here.

    When has “the narcissist believe(d) that he is doomed to an existence of loneliness and destitution”? When has he had the chance to stand a healthy and resilient relationship? Sure, narcissits are hungrily seeing attention and if the attention is no longer forthcoming, then s/he will suffer from being cut off of his/her supply of fuel. But, as people with such disorder don’t form emotional bonds with anyone, I am puzzled to read that they are seeking a healthy and resilient relationship as this is not their nature.

    I also thought they were resilient and moved quickly on to the next source of fuel since they have multiple victims lined out and are never short of supply, or is this just bogus.

    Once you come to understand the narc’s behavior patterns and manipulative schemes, it’s easy to predict their behavior. By not playing their game and calling on their bullshit or ignoring them, except for high functioning or malicious ones, some will chill out for a bit. But each one acts differently and I met some who went full on on the rage from narcissistic injury, he lost his integrity and was on the counter attack.

    I didn’t contact or engage in social media for a while with the narc whom I have been entangled and neither did he. As soon as I posted an update of my life on social media, he reacted and called me as he needed to seek fuel from me and couldn’t bare the fact I was enjoying life with others and without him. And, boy he looked discontent although he was trying hard to hide it from me.

    In short, narcs are their worst enemies. Theri paradoxical behavior in wanting admiration mixed with their desire to cause anxiety and anger in their victims are counterproductive to keeping any healthy human being on a leash for long.

    Once you understand the patterns of their erratic behaviors, you will regain rational and self respect and eventually stop putting up with such bullshit regardless of the idealization period and intermittent reinforcement.

    I have left my abusive and manipulative partner who was more on the anti-social personality disorder spectrum.

  • You will never win with the narcissist, but you will will if you get him out of your life. He will fume, watch your back, but you get to rock on with the kind of friends that walk on two legs instead of slither or run on all fours through life. Don’t waste your energy on getting even. He is miserable and will waste his life in angry, jealous, rage full, insecurity. Let him rip. You find people to love who will love you right back.

  • i was very empty meeting my husband got ,married after five months of dateing
    beware most narsist have many personalities they can be likable charming and be a child preditor.all at the same time these men seek vunerable souls that are looking for love in all the wrong places. they will Prey on you and any one who is willing to give them there narsistic fix.even children Try to get natural councelling as well as spiritual CHRISTIAN therapy you will need it to recover these people are usually wolves in sheep clothings. to good to be true wanting to suck up all your time in the begggining not because they admire you but are looking to find your weekness to use against you

    pray for them
    do not let them Prey for you

  • I know how tough is it, and i still struggle from the break up with a narcissist. They are sort of crazy, not boring and because of the love bombing phase in the beginning it is kind of difficult to unhook.

    She ended up the relationship after 8 months over text as in the previous 2 times. That was the 3rd break-up and i decided that this should be the final one and blocked her phone and maintained no contact. During the time after i was reflecting on the relationship with all the stages etc what i did wrong why i turned out this way and to my surprise her profile was perfectly fitting the one of a narcissist. Felt like i was blinded for that during the relationship.

    In first phase, she was love bombing me like crazy, then after 2 months the first break up came really out of the blue – reasons i dont get a message everyday, you didnt do something i asked and so on… then i just said, i respect your decision, and two days later she wanted desperately to get back and next cycle started again with a break up in 2 months with similar continuation.

    Then with time i noticed how superficial she was, she liked art and classy stuff but really without understanding. Highly controlling, but all coming from insecurity. Thus always needed to reminded how great she was and etc. Every criticism was like a tragedy and it really felt like walking on egg shells. She was very sensitive about her reputation and even in school she told me she was beating her brother at home just because he was bullied at school and having a looser brother was affecting her reputation. Then the bad stuff from her past started to emerge slowly spoon by spoon, like she had an abortion, playing bottle sex games and as a result getting f****d out of bad luck.

    In the meantime, she was complaining why i am not reacting badly when she is behaving badly with me. She told me she was the best friend of bosses and at the same time conspiring to have competitive colleague of hers to get fired. When introducing her to new friends she liked the ones who “showed her their weaknesses” and she really wanted to meet them again. She disliked the judging ones.

    As i said earlier she broke up by text by ”i cant do this anymore.’ and then i thanked her for the relationship and was over. I wish it worked better and she wasnt that way, we just me so romantically the first time…

  • It still is very, very sad- I was in love with my narcissist for ten years. Despite the abuse, I do feel that deep down inside there was a person who could have been the best man in the world.They are mentally sick and truly ruin their partners if we let them.
    My heart breaks for the person he may have been if the illness had never developed. There were moments in time I would see a flicker of light in his eyes, a flicker of of love- I truly believe God was giving me glimpse of the real person. My hopes are some day I will walk through the gates of heaven and I will see him…smiling at me and holding out his hand. It will be the healed man I once loved. He will look at me and smile and let me know it wasn’t his fault-he was simply crippled by a horrific mental illness. He will tell me how much he loves me and this time I will see it in his big brown eyes and know it’s real, No more lies and deception, he will be the man God has created and God has fixed. This time, I will truly feel loved by the heavenly man behind the mask, the man God fixed and allowed me to feel unconditional love and acceptance. No more “false self”, he will be real and walk through the gates of heaven with me by his side.

    • Your response literally made me cry. I have recently kicked my husband of 5 years out of the house after finally running out of tolerance for his behavior. Yet … there’s a reason I married him, and I don’t think I’ll ever stop loving him. I’ve seen his struggles to come to grips with his problem and improve, but also seen enough by now that I know that he just … can’t … ever get there.

      I know exactly how you feel. I, too, believe that there’s a very good man in there, but smothered by devastating insecurity and fear. Also like you, I don’t think I’ll ever truly meet that man in this life.

  • Thank you for this insight. It is a very helpful article and so true! I have experienced 28 years of narcissistic rage, abuse and fear. I divorced him yet still stayed. But after finally having enough (and learning what narc are) I ended our relationship. My kids are young adults and could see how he treated us was wrong, so they were angry and didn’t want to speak to him. He then commited suicide 11/19/17. Everything I have read says this is uncommon but everything I read in this article about feelings when rejected would make sense for a narc “to end” all the anxieties, fears,etc. How uncommon is suicide of a narcissist?

  • I was just screwed over by a seemingly friend who said she was going to help me out with housing because I was homeless this winter. She said she had friends who were very helpful. I said “yes” I will accept the help and she called my family who she knew I NEVER talk to, and asked them to help me out with the rent for an apartment. She has absolutely no boundaries at all. Now I have to call her back, and I know she might blow up for setting boundaries with her, and for telling her she cannot speak with my family. I’m so upset, but I know this will finally end and I’ll feel better once she is gone from my life.

  • Narcissistic or sicopath behaviors, its scarry to married to a person for 13 years and he has no shamed in lying and making everything about him and he lyer in every thing he was worst then my own dad this guy did a domestic violence restraining order against me and tooken my children away from me with no prove got to love family court system. They don’t do portical and they dont know whats best for my children they give the abusser my children. No joke i had a paper trail and facts to prove how can people sleep by giving the abusser my children.

  • I’d love to see a comparison of normal behaviours/reactions compared to that of a narcissist, in various situations. Sometimes a narcissist has you so bogged down that you need to read a basis of comparison.

  • I am in a dilemma.I was in a gay relationship with a narcissist who started the devaluation process a couple of months ago, and I’ve now found out is in a relationship with a woman. I have asked him to meet up to talk about out it several times (we are currently in different cities) and he has agreed and then cancelled several times – although still texts, now and again, with intermittent reinforcements.
    Though I am very upset, and wish things could be as they were, I am educated in the subject of narcissism enough to know I need to go no contact now. Trouble is, I am going to be working around him in a a few months and feel like I am not strong enough to be able to see him and talk with him normally. I would prefer him to know that I want to have no interaction or conversation at this time and have the chance to prepare for that. But I also know many narcissists would not react in an honourable way to a request like that. Any suggestions? Should I write and explain what I want – and if so what kind of tone should I use? I am very fragile about this situation and need a plan. Thank you.

  • This is describes my current boyfriend. I broke up with him twice and he Bagged to me and convinced me he will improve and he does. I am just afraid this behaviour will come back later on. Please I need advice.

    • It will come back. This is a cycle that will repeat itself for as long as you are together. Run and don’t look back. I’m almost 20 years into this- spare yourself the trouble and trust ur intuition.

  • This article has been extremely helpful. I have never understood his attempts to smooth out the relationship from the perspective of fear of rejection and that narcs will do it even when they know the relationship is doomed. As the codependent, empath, optimist… I am finding I am programmed to keep him happy bc that means I will experience less emotional pain in the short term. Definitely not the long term. Long term outcomes with a narcissist = immense pain.

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