Narcopath red flags

Narcopath red flags DEFAULT

What do you get when you cross a sociopath with a narcissist? The least funny joke and the worst kind of hybrid: a narcissistic sociopath, narcopath for short. Both a narcissist and sociopath have an inflated sense of how important they are, as well as a constant need for praise and admiration. 

One commonality between the two is their ability to fool others in order to get what they want, without remorse. But what sets them apart is that a narcopath is unable to handle criticism or be viewed in a negative light, whereas a sociopath couldn't care less who thinks what or how they're perceived. 

When you hear the word narcopath you may picture a deranged, knife-wielding lunatic... at least that's what I pictured before I met my own. Unfortunately, this couldn't be further from the truth. Narcopaths are boogie men in disguise and wolves in sheep's clothing. Their abuse is sometimes so subtle that you don't see it until the curtain closes and your world is torn apart.

Still unsure if you're in a relationship with a narcopath? Here are ten telltale signs that you might be.

1. Things move from zero to one hundred in seconds.

From the beginning, nothing is normal with a narcopath. Things progress at warp speed, hop-scotching over the usual stages of a relationship. Instead of slowly getting to know one another, you go from the first date to planning your future together within weeks of meeting. And when your gut warns you things are moving too fast, you tell it to shut up because you've finally found your soulmate.

RELATED: Does Your Selfie Obsession Mean You're Narcissistic?

2. They're a broken record of compliments.

A narcopath will sweep you off your feet, place you on a pedestal, then worship you from down below. They'll tell you the things you’ve always wanted to hear, saying them over and over and over again.

But listen closely and you'll notice there's not much variation in these love monologues, and their sweet-nothings sound more like a script than anything from the heart. "You're the prettiest. The sexiest. The skinniest. The best mom. The funniest." If everything feels staged and too good to be true, it probably is.

3. They flatter you with comparisons.

There's no period at the end of a compliment. Instead, a narcopath compliments you by comparing you to someone else in their life.

In my case, he'd say things like, "You have such a sexy voice. Not too high, nor too low; it's just perfect. My friend Courtney's voice is super high-pitched and she has this weird way of talking through her teeth. Annoying." Or, "You have a great body. I guess I'm used to having more to hug with my ex!"

Praising you by putting down others is a huge red flag, not to mention incredibly distasteful. And while it's no doubt flattering to hear these praises, keep in mind that one day they'll be offering them to someone else and using your name to fill the second blank.

RELATED: How To FINALLY Move On From A Narcissistic Ex-Love

4. Your chemistry between the sheets is off the charts.

You've never felt this much passion with anyone else. Pushing all the right buttons in just the right ways, it's like they're reading your mind and its desires. The reason sex is so mind-blowing, at least in the beginning, isn't because they know what to do with their hands; they know what to do with your mind. They'll make you feel like you're the only one who's ever existed to them.

Yes, narcopaths are indeed that great... at acting, that is. By mirroring your every emotion they're able to make their own emotions seem genuine and fool you into thinking yours are real.

5. Their eyes are windows to nothingness.

My Narc-in-a-Box would stare at me with such intensity I'd become nervous, fidget, and quickly turn away. Speaking directly into my eyes with a deadpan and unwavering stare, I don't think he blinked once during our four months together. At times his gaze was so piercing that his pupils practically vanished.

But sadly, behind all that intensity lied a vast amount of dark nothingness. I turned away from that stare because it made me feel uneasy in all the wrong ways.

6. They always lead the conversation back to themselves.

On the surface, a narcopath seems hyper-focused on you and genuinely interested in learning all there is to know. Yet, the moment you begin divulging this information, they quickly interrupt with a story of their own.

It's like a revolving door: They ask you a question to gain the opportunity to talk about themselves. They're quick to interject with their thoughts and opinions, and always have a similar experience to share with you. Experiences that, once dissected, are nothing more than sweetly camouflaged one-uppers and indirect ways to let you know that they know better.

RELATED: 8 Reasons Why My Narcissistic Cat Would Be The Worst Husband EVER

7. They have a checkered relationship history.

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I've never met anyone with such an odd and storied relationship history. He traveled to Texas after meeting a girl online, then met his ex-wife online, and later flew in another girl he met online (through a quiz website!) all the way from Europe, before finally meeting me online.

Narcopaths often leave long trails of broken relationships behind them, but, of course, they were never the ones responsible for breaking them. And no matter how long ago it ended, they'll claim all their former flames still burn strongly for them from afar.

8. They use big words that have little substance.

Have you ever read something that initially seems incredibly deep and profound, until you reach the end and realize it's nothing but a nonsensical jumble of fancy words? A narcopath craves superiority and thrives on being smarter than everyone in the room.

The only the problem is that often times they're not, forcing them to fake it and pray no one catches on. On the surface, a narcopath seems highly intelligent and cultured, but dig deeper and you'll discover it's nothing but fluff.

9. They give because it makes them look better.

Give and you shall receive. Or, in the narcopath's case, give and tell everyone within a thousand mile radius who you gave to and exactly how much.

A narcopath doesn't give because it makes them feel good on the inside; rather, they give because it makes them look good from the outside. No kind deed goes unnoticed because they'd never allow it. Whether it's helping an old lady cross the street, giving a homeless person a buck, or donating to their children's PTA, they'll make sure someone knows about their generosity.

10. They're no stranger to the silent treatment.

Narcopaths love to dish it out. You may see glimpses of this passive-aggressive form of punishment early on in the relationship, or it might come on suddenly out of left field. Either way, the silent treatment is without a doubt the vilest and abusive trait that narcopaths possess.

Like a child, anytime they can't get their way or feel threatened, they stomp away with their arms crossed and punish you with a deafening silence. The harder you reach out, the more you cry, and the angrier you become, the better they feel.

It's normal for your partner to get angry, sulk, or brood sometimes. What isn't normal is using silence as a weapon to punish and control you, then sitting back and gaining pleasure from your pain.

Allison Zapata is a writer.


8 things that can keep you trapped in a relationship with a narcissist

abusive relationship
Skeronov / Shutterstock
  • Narcissists are highly skilled at picking their victims.
  • They select people who are vulnerable, either because of their past, or because they have high levels of empathy.
  • Here are some of the things that keep people trapped in toxic relationships with narcissists.

It's hard to walk away from a relationship you've put time and effort into. Sometimes it's right to fight for your partner, while other times it's best for you both to walk away.

But when it comes to dangerous, toxic people, it's even more difficult to know what to do. Narcissists — people with a grandiose sense of entitlement — are particularly damaging to be in a relationship with. They spin lies to keep you hooked, while they simultaneously chip away at your self-esteem.

There are certain red flags to look out for in a relationship, or on a first date, that indicate you could be dating a narcissist. If your partner happens to be one, continuing the relationship is going to be hard work — but not impossible.

If you do decide to leave, there are still a number of things that could keep you stuck in the toxic cycle. Here are seven of them to be aware of.

1. Love bombing

love hands
Alexey Laputin / Shutterstock

Manipulative people, like narcissists, can hook their victims in with a tactic called "love bombing." It's the stage of the relationship where they identify their target, then make them feel like the most special person in the world by showering them with compliments, affection, and gifts. At the time, the victim is likely to feel like the luckiest person alive, and believe they have found true love.

But the manipulator's intentions are not pure. Love bombing is simply reinforcement, where the abuser showers the victim with love if the victim acts how they want. If the victim doesn't, then the manipulator withdraws and becomes a new person — like Jekyll and Hyde. They withdraw all their kindness and instead punish the victim with whatever they feel is appropriate — shouting, giving them the silent treatment, or even physically abusing them.

Love bombing is a smart tactic because the victim believes the affectionate, caring partner is the real one, and they blame themselves for bringing out the monster in front of them. This keeps victims trapped because they bend over backwards trying to get their loving partner back — but nothing they do will ever be enough.

2. Gratitude

couple upset argument
ShutterDivision / Shutterstock

According to psychologist Perpetua Neo, gratitude can keep some people stuck in abusive relationships with narcissists, because nobody is 100% bad all the time.

"You can always find evidence of your partner being good, that's the whole point," she told INSIDER. "That is the way in which they operate so that you will always have selective evidence."

Narcissists expect any tiny, piecemeal changes they make to be applauded, and their mistakes ignored. But if their victims ever slip up, it's blown way out of proportion. But they are incredibly convincing.

"They will always use that to hold you hostage," Neo said. "In this sense you have to be really honest with yourself."

3. You're an empath

walking away
Black Salmon / Shutterstock

This is especially hard for people with high levels of empathy, Neo said, who are often targets for narcissists.

"People with high levels of empathy, people who over-give, people who are fixers, they tend to be in such relationships," she said. "They will over-inflate the gratitude and will underplay how much they are suffering."

Narcissists and highly empathetic people, like empaths, make a toxic partnership because the empath will want to fix the pain in the narcissist. Empaths have a lot of compassion and understanding to give, while narcissists thrive on someone worshipping them.

But while the empath gives and gives, the narcissist takes and takes, which is incredibly emotionally exhausting.

4. Trauma bonding

trauma bond
otnaydur / Shutterstock

Therapist Shannon Thomas, author of "Healing from Hidden Abuse," told INSIDER psychological abuse is insidious, and it occurs a over time like an IV drip of poison entering your veins.

She said victims can become biologically attached to their abusers through something called "trauma bonding."

"You have this back and forth, and the body becomes addicted," Thomas said. "When we're looking for something that we want, that we once had, which is a connection with somebody, and they are playing cat and mouse where they are pulling it back and forth, then the body really does become dependent on having that approval."

It's a bit like a drug addiction, except the victim is hooked on the emotional rollercoaster, and getting intermittent affection when they act how the narcissist wants them to.

5. Altruism

woman alone sad
kittirat roekburi / Shutterstock

Research has shown that some people stay in unhappy relationships longer than they should because of altruism. Essentially, they believe their partner is still putting effort into the relationship, so they try and reciprocate.

But you cannot read someone else's mind. So in most relationships, they end anyway, even when factoring in the altruism.

With a narcissist, however, it might be hard to figure out when to stop trying, because they exaggerate all their good points and refuse to believe any of their bad ones. This can be confusing for their partner, meaning they search inside themselves for the problem, rather than realising their relationship is toxic.

6. Downplaying abuse

sad man and woman

In the midst of a relationship with a narcissist, they are likely to start gaslighting, and twisting the victim's reality. The victim may find they end up being grateful for tiny victories, like the fact they haven't been physically abused in three weeks.

Psychological abuse is just as damaging as physical abuse, but it's harder to identify because there aren't physical scars. Unfortunately, manipulative people are often aware of this, and they can use this to their advantage. They know physical violence is the breaking point for many people, and so they will abuse and control their partner in every way up until that point.

"When people say, 'but he didn't hit me,' what they often mean is that they would leave if they were hit," said Lisa Aronson Fontes, a psychology researcher at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. "Their partners exert control one thousand ways but may stop short of hitting, if they know that would 'break' the relationship."

7. Repetition compulsion

girl window
Darren Baker / Shutterstock

In romantic relationships, people can sometimes repeat behaviours to make up for the falls of their previous ones. In psychology this is called repetition compulsion, and it essentially means you're trying to fix the past by pursuing similar situations or people who once hurt you.

People who grew up with healthy relationships and relatively few traumas are more likely to have a healthy attachment style. But those who weren't so lucky are more at risk of finding abusive, troubled partners over and over again.

"This is an unconscious attempt to make sure that they never again go through anything like they went through with their original caregiver," psychotherapist Allison Abrams told INSIDER. "The irony is that by engaging in these defenses that we've learned we are actually recreating the very thing we were trying to avoid."

Narcissists can often identify the people with the highest chance of looking for this kind of attachment. They want someone who is damaged, because they're more likely to go along with their lies and deceit because they're probably more scared of the relationship failing.

8. Financial control

empty wallet
Shutterstock / Champion studio

Financial abuse is when somebody controls how and when you spend money. Sometimes, they are the breadwinner and withhold or hide their money, while other times, they are a financial leech.

"There's also this behind the scenes way — keeping people in debt, and keeping family in debt, so the partner doesn't feel like there's money to live on," Thomas said, who has written a book about financial abuse.

The abuser essentially warps their victim's reality, Thomas said, because it's a way of taking away their humanity. When the victim tries to complain or get their needs met, the abuser will say things like "look at this house, look at the car you drive, look at the trip we just took." They make the victim feel guilty for not appreciating what they have, even though they have no control over their own life.

Healing and protecting yourself

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SewCream / Shutterstock

Once you've identified the red flags and the signs you might be a target for narcissists, the next steps are to protect yourself from their toxic tactics.

If you're just leaving a relationship with a narcissist, it will be difficult, but you will come out the other side stronger and wiser — especially if you vow to work on whatever made you vulnerable in the first place.

It's important to know that it takes the average person seven times to leave a toxic relationship. So if you struggled the first time, don't be hard on yourself.

If you suspect you're being targetted, run fast and far, Neo said. Remind yourself of your boundaries, and don't let yourself be tricked into thinking you deserve less than you do.

"Gratitude is sometimes dangerous because people say you should be grateful for the bad times," Neo said. "Instead, you should be grateful for your capacity to come through the bad times... Especially for people with high levels of empathy and the people pleasers."

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Five Common Narcopath Traits and Signs To Never Ignore

You typically won’t identify that anything is off with this individual until their personality issues affect their lives and those around them. When you add sociopathic tendencies to narcissism, it can increase a selfish and evil nature. According to the National Library of Medicine, Otto Kernberg was the first to describe this disorder back in 1984. He used the following characteristics to describe this mental health issue:

  • Aggression
  • Paranoia
  • Brutality
  • A diagnosis of narcissism
  • A diagnosis of antisocial personality disorder

So how do you protect yourself when this mental health diagnosis is often hard to spot? Here are five signs that you can identify in someone with this vicious form of narcissism.

1. Conversation Always Comes Back to Themselves

Like the typical narcissist, this person doesn’t care about you at all. They won’t want to be bored to tears hearing about your day when they could talk about themselves. Even if you try to speak to this person about things going on in your world, they will somehow bring the conversation back to making it all about them.

Their selfish nature is hard to deny, and they don’t have any qualms about the need to dominate the conversation.

2. A Checkered Relationship History

History is critical with any individual, as it is a good predictor of the future. You will often notice that this person won’t talk about their past, and there are no friends and family members to meet. They keep these things very concealed in their hearts because they can’t have healthy relationships.

In most instances, the family has written this person off due to their volatile behavior and can’t maintain friendships.

3. Playing Mind Games

Since you’re dealing with a master manipulator, you have probably become accustomed to their mind games. They don’t view you as a person they love or want to be around; instead, they only have affiliations with you for their gain.

Once they accomplish what they need, they won’t hesitate to drop you. A narcopath will use silence as a weapon, which is also to gain the upper hand and control you.

4. They Lack a Sense of Right and Wrong

Unlike ordinary people, the perceptions of those with this mental health disorder are skewed. While most people can define right from wrong, this person has no filters. In fact, they don’t care if something is wrong if it helps to further their agenda.

They see the world as one prominent place where there are tons of people to do their bidding. They only form “relationships” with those who will help them with their goal or scheme.

5. Their Eyes Are Empty and Hollow

One of the most frightening experiences when dealing with this sadistic form of narcissism is the look in their eyes. Perhaps, this is one of the defining ways to see if there’s any depth to them. The eyes have always been said to be the window to the soul, and it’s clear that something is lacking in the spiritual sense of this person.

When they look into your eyes, they can stare at you with a deadpan look. Some have noticed that they don’t blink a lot, but others feel that their gaze is so piercing that they’re looking straight through them.

The sad part is that it doesn’t have any substance with all the intensity their gaze brings. Behind all the piercing looks is dark nothingness. Many find it hard to look them in the eyes because they can make you feel uneasy. Is it evil that’s looking back at you?

Since this person is an untreatable narcissistic sociopath, they often commit horrific crimes with little thought. Could people like Jeffrey Dahmer have fit into this category which wasn’t known until recently? He was said to have above-average intellect, had a normal childhood, and no one thought he was anything but typical.

However, according to Biography, he killed 17 people, among other horrible acts. In theory, the average Joe living next door could have terrible secrets to hide. However, don’t be so quick to assume that only males dominate this category, as females can also be a narcopath.

There are good people in this world, and there are bad people. It’s scary when you’re dating or making new friends because you never know who will cross your path. As if having an antisocial personality or narcissism wasn’t enough, it’s a deadly combination when you mix the two.

The narcopath often flies under the radar until they do something horrible that brings attention to their mental health needs. Sadly, they’re usually the ones that make the news headlines. Learn the signs of this dangerous mental health disturbance and protect yourself.

Red Flag Warnings! Top 10 Narcissistic Red Flags To Watch For

13 Warning signs we’re falling for
Mr. or Ms. Completely Wrong.
Key feelings that signal it’s time to step back.
No matter how perfect it feels.

Articles, blogs, books, and experts talk about red flags for recognizing a con man, a sociopath, a narcopath, a narcissist. The thing is, that’s really hard to do because it’s normal to trust – and not at all normal to assume someone is lying – let alone to recognize a lie for the lie that it is.

Make a realignment in our thoughts to be sure we don’t put any blame or shame on ourselves for being human in the face of their utter inhumanity.

In our world, we wonder, “Why would someone lie?“, even we see that they are. Knowing the characteristics of a sociopath is need-to-know useful for breaking away from one of these creatures and shutting down their empty hot-air promises.

The truth is, these are criminals we’ve encountered. What we’ve encountered isn’t true love, but someone misrepresenting themselves; that is called fraud.

These entanglements are nothing but a scam, and larceny, intentional deception, abuse. They make for jaw-dropping stories; better than any movie we’ve ever seen; unfortunately it’s our actual real-life. 

The Narcissistic Sociopath Next Door, Down the Street, at Work, in Our Bed.

So, how do we protect ourselves from the sociopaths roaming around in our neighborhoods, or at work, or online… If we had only a past experience and information about them, we’d need to be on red alert constantly.

In order to avoid the estimated 12 million sociopaths in the USA, we’d never sleep. It would take extreme scrutiny. And we’d maybe never ant to go outside.

We Can Sidestep the User From The Moment We Spot Them

There aren’t two genuine people in this new exciting love thing; there’s beautiful us… and pathologically narcissistic them.

We’d be armed only with examining every barista for that intense stare; listening at any first date for them to break into an elaborate history of their stellar humanitarian, top-government-secret success.

Looking At People Around Us with Suspicion is No Way to Live

If the only way to detect a pathological user was by their behavior, we’d keep a constant watch for every co-worker’s relentless flirty-flattery. We’d be on the look-out for every tale of woe about others who’ve done them wrong.

Throughout a day we’d be on pins and needles waiting for the danger signs, such as that declaration of deep affection within one hour of meeting.

And again 30 minutes later. Then flowers at our doorstep. And another text 20 minutes later… It would go on and on as we rationalized the kind gesture or debated in our heads, “Are they a love bombing, life invading sociopath…?”

How Can We See Beyond and See the Real Clues

It’s one thing to be on guard checking someone else’s behavior, but couldn’t it be simpler than that? How can we more certainly avoid getting into that love bombing stage – and get out before we get got?

How to Detect a Con Man

There aren’t two genuine people in this new exciting love thing; there’s beautiful us… And them. How ’bout the next time our cheeks flush and our hearts go pitter-patter at the glance of a man – we pause for a moment.

We’d go nuts sorting through the nuts if we couldn’t nail down the real clues to seeing through them. There’s a more direct route to detecting a pathological user in our midst, one closer to home. It’s us!

There’s more usefully only one person to monitor for signs of falling in love with a sociopath; only one person to turn a honed hypervigilant eye toward.

Narrow Down the Odds of Being Hooked by a Narcissistic Sociopath

Here’s more good news: it comes down to this… not every Tom, Dick and Harry sociopath can worm their way into our lives. Pretty nifty. Why is this…? Because to be entangled into a true love scam, we have to feel attraction for them. We have to be interested in them. Otherwise, we won’t notice them.

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We Think They’re Normal

We’re not going to fall in love with a sociopath who isn’t a guy we think is a regular guy we’d fall in love with. Make sense? – So, considering how rare it is to meet someone we’re interested in (at least for me) perhaps there aren’t so many sociopaths to skip falling in love with!

Overall, how many men (or women) do we meet per year that we’d like to date? How many per month? Per week? – Maybe not so many. So, when we meet up with a man that makes our hearts flutter, sending dancing butterflies flitting ’round our heads: we stop.

We’ve Got the Clues

Right there we pull the reigns. This is when we examine that one person that can give us all the clues. All the red flags to alert us to danger if this person is one of these bad apples are right there within ourselves.

We can step over the trap of falling in love with a sociopath monster by learning a different set of red flags…

The first signs of being targeted by a pathological user are seen within ourselves and at the time of the very first abduction attempt. We want to extract our gorgeous selves before we’re good-and-truly hooked.

13 Red Flags Shouting: Warning! Falling in Love with a Sociopath

If we’re about to fall in love with Mr. Completely Wrong red flags will wave. If we’ve been in love with a sociopath before, these signs will be familiar.

  1. We are attracted and drawn to this person more powerfully than ever before to anyone. Or: we kinda aren’t interested, but we give them a try anyway for a nebulous reason we can’t even quite define.
  2. We can’t believe how amazing he is! We can’t believe this Prince Charming likes us!
  3. We live for and love every text, email or phone call he makes to us; If he doesn’t call or text we crash, plummet in an extraordinary way.
  4. We feel like we might die without him. Really, we think we just might be nothing without him (or her).
  5. He hints we are meant to be, soul mates, and the thrill is out of this world!
  6. He talks about an old girlfriend who was amazing; we feel bound to be better. A female sociopath will flatter her male prey saying that he’s “out of her league”, every normal man is inspired and driven to convince her she isn’t.
  7. We describe him as the kindest, sweetest, most perfect man in the Universe.
  8. We’re a perfect match we’re so alike. We click. We fit. In ways we never imagined.
  9. We think: Wow! It’s true: Kiss enough frogs and not just a prince, but a King has appeared!
  10. He makes every other man we’ve dated seem like a Cracker Jack prize we settled for.
  11. We feel over the moon. We feel we won the lottery. Only better.
  12. We quite adamantly think anyone – a friend or whoever – who says this guy isn’t the greatest thing ever is wrong.
  13. Underneath it all, we feel unhinged.

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Prey Are Ensnared by Our Normal Human Emotions

And now we’re in love with a sociopath. He waits with his claws pulled in and his fangs out of sight while we prepare to serve the ever-hungry sociopath our beautiful-selves on a silver platter.

This is all the effect of the hypnosis and snake charming power of a sociopath; this isn’t actually love. After winning our trust, they’re ready to slurp us up and take us on a ride in hell along the five stages of true love scam.Genuine love or concern for us or caring will never be part of the deal. This isn’t love; this is an attack.

What is real love? It takes two to be in love. It takes two to build a relationship. It takes time to build a relationship. – As in months and years. Not days and weeks. Real love with a real person in complex enough; a sociopath is stealing our life. There is no love.

Love is a complex matter that is
a reflection of each person’s attitude
and philosophy toward life.

~ Daisaku Ikeda

We’re Brainwashed, Hypnotized, Injected with Venom

A relationship with a sociopath is made up of a monster-demon, life-sucking parasite, and a person (us) spellbound by the learned tricks of the con man or con woman sociopath. It’s a true love scam. We’re in love with someone who doesn’t really exist at all. Even for themselves, they are nothing unless we believe their lies.

There aren’t two genuine people in this new exciting love thing; there’s beautiful us… and pathologically narcissistic them.

How ’bout the next time our cheeks flush and our hearts go pitter-patter at the glance of a man – we pause for a moment. Whether this is a first, or we’ve been in love with a sociopath before: stop. Slow it down. Watch. Listen. To ourselves.

Take Dinner Off the Table

Return that silver platter carrying that super awesome, valuable hot-dish of ourselves back to the kitchen. – And take the time for a brush-up-lesson, a check-in on real love before we take one more phone call or return one more text.

Make a realignment in our thoughts to be sure we don’t put any blame or shame on ourselves for being human in the face of their utter inhumanity.

Here’s to REAL True Love and Happiness!

Look into guided recovery coaching here.

Feel free to email me for coaching at personalized rates, [email protected]

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Red flags narcopath

Should you apologize if you did nothing wrong?

Should you apologize if you did nothing wrong?

Don’t apologize when you’ve done nothing wrong. That’s not your fault. Women are taught and socialized to say sorry—to feel sorry—whether they’re in the wrong or not. It’s a form of deference, and it’s a way of making ourselves smaller or just appeasing.

What do you call someone who says they will do something but doesn t?

Someone who says they will do something but doesn’t is called unreliable. To simply call them a liar won’t do because usually the intention is good but they rely on the fact that their circumstances have changed. It’s their words, commitment and character that you can’t rely on.

What is toxic personality disorder?

Much like psychopaths, toxic people are expert in how to control and manipulate others. They always know the words and actions that will send shock waves through you, set you on edge, put you into a tailspin of doubt, confusion, anxiety and worry.

What is a Narcopath?

A narcissistic sociopath (or narcopath) is what you can call a person who has both narcissistic and sociopathic traits — and it’s a really dangerous kind of person. What makes them so insidious is that they know how to hurt their victims and how to keep their victims around.

How can you tell if a woman is toxic?

7 signs a person is toxic

  • You’re left feeling emotionally exhausted after an encounter with them.
  • They try to intimidate you to get their way.
  • They try control you by guilt tripping.
  • They are easily jealous.
  • They constantly see themselves as a victim.
  • They give backhanded compliments.
  • They’re overly defensive.

What are the signs of a failing relationship?

7 Warning Signs You’re In a Failing Relationship

  • Resentment. Resentment grows when someone feels unheard or dismissed.
  • Disrespect. Mutual respect is a cornerstone of all successful relationships.
  • Dishonesty.
  • Mistrust.
  • Distancing.
  • Defensiveness.
  • Contempt.

What are red flags in a relationship?

“One major red flag in relationships is when everyday life, events, conversations, and basic interactions are frequently about that person — where there’s constant manipulation and abuse of power over you. “For instance, you could confront the person you’re dating about something they did or said that hurt you.

What are the warning signs of a bad relationship?

  • 7 Signs You’re in a Toxic Relationship. If these keep showing up, it’s time to get out.
  • Passive aggressive behavior.
  • Volatility.
  • “Jokes” that aren’t really jokes.
  • Walking on eggshells.
  • You feel like you have to ask permission.
  • Constant exhaustion.
  • Becoming isolated.

What are three signs of an unhealthy relationship?

Here are some signs to help you recognize a toxic relationship:

  • All take, no give.
  • Feeling drained.
  • Lack of trust.
  • Hostile atmosphere.
  • Occupied with imbalance.
  • Constant judgment.
  • Persistent unreliability.
  • Nonstop narcissism.

What are some red flags of an unhealthy relationship?

Here are 10 key relational red flags to look out for:

  • Lack of communication.
  • Irresponsible, immature, and unpredictable.
  • Lack of trust.
  • Significant family and friends don’t like your partner.
  • Controlling behavior.
  • Feeling insecure in the relationship.
  • A dark or secretive past.
  • Non-resolution of past relationships.

What is an unhealthy friendship?

In unhealthy friendships, people ridicule one another, gossip or spread rumors, or act mean to one another. Healthy friendships allow each other to grow and change. Unhealthy friendships are threatened when one person grows or changes. Healthy friendships are not possessive.

How do you know if it’s time to break up?

“It might be time to break up when those things are no longer true or if you are no longer able to communicate and hear each other.” “When you spend more time asking for what you need instead of getting it and you see no changes, it’s time to go,” she continues.

What are bad reasons to break up?

Here are 10 primary reasons why breakups and divorces happen, and 10 ways to avoid them.

  • Bad behaviors.
  • Cheating.
  • Misdirected anger.
  • Being unsupportive.
  • Toxic people.
  • Withholding affection and attention.
  • Lying.
  • Stealing.

When should you let go of a relationship?

If you feel anxious, sad or angry more often than you feel happy and positive, it may be time to let your relationship go. You deserve (and likely will) find a relationship you’re happy in, so don’t waste your time and well-being in relationships that often make you feel bad.

How do you know if a relationship is worth saving?

The first way to know if your relationship is worth saving is that you are both committed to growth, individually and together. When couples reach out for support, they are often in a difficult time of heightened conflict, betrayal, or disconnect.

How do you let someone go emotionally?

Tips for letting go

  1. Create a positive mantra to counter the painful thoughts.
  2. Create physical distance.
  3. Do your own work.
  4. Practice mindfulness.
  5. Be gentle with yourself.
  6. Allow the negative emotions to flow.
  7. Accept that the other person may not apologize.
  8. Engage in self-care.

Why is it so hard to leave a toxic relationship?

Because of the way it can impact your self-esteem, as well as the energy required to keep it going, an unhealthy relationship can feel like your everything — making it super difficult to leave. “For some, they see having an unhealthy relationship as better than not having a relationship at all,” Madison says.

What does an unhealthy relationship look like?

Here are some signs of an unhealthy relationship: Physical abuse: your partner pushes you, hits you or destroys your things. Control: your partner tells you what to do, what to wear or who to hang out with. They constantly check up on you or use threats (for example, to harm you or themselves) to make you do things.

How do you let go of someone you can’t be with?

Here are 17 tips to let go of someone you love so you can get back to living the life you want.

  1. 1) Don’t set a timer.
  2. 2) Take stock.
  3. 3) Let yourself feel whatever you are feeling.
  4. 4) Be kind to yourself.
  5. 5) Do you actually want to let them go?
  6. 6) Talk it out.
  7. 7) Let go of the blame and finger-pointing.

Why are narcissists so hard to leave?

Fear of being alone – Narcissists are skilled at destroying their partner’s social circles and relationships with family members. The prospect of leaving may equate to a feeling of being truly alone; Fear of reprisals – The narcissist may have created a culture of fear and anxiety in their partner’s life.

Why would a narcissist leave you?

Sometimes a triggering event will motivate the narcissist to leave. These are usually life-altering events for one of you. If you become ill or incapacitated or unable or unwilling to participate in the life the narcissist has designed, that may prompt the narcissist to leave.

How does a narcissist destroy you?

When a narcissist disappears from your life, they leave destruction in their wake. Through their love bombing, gaslighting, and manipulation, they’ve managed to turn you into a shell of your former self, with no clear way back to who you once were.

Do narcissists dump you suddenly?

They may leave you suddenly and rationalize it in any of a number of ways. Two common ones are: You aren’t who they thought you were. This explanation allows them to relieve themselves of any blame.

06/04/2019Manon WilcoxEducation

8 Red-Flag Phrases Gaslighting Narcissists Like To Use


Not all toxic people are narcissists but we still need to keep these people at arm’s length and not be drawn into their toxicity.


There are often red flags that we should never ignore which can tell us a lot about a person.  How many times do we see something at the start of a relationship and ignore it thinking it was a ‘one off?’  By the time we see the next one, we’ve almost forgotten about the first!  Please keep them logged in your head.  One or two instances may not indicate that someone is truly toxic but when these little red flags are waved in front of you time and time again, they become a massive warning sign of a treacherous path ahead.


  1. This person makes you feel on edge.  You can’t really put your finger on the reason but you’ve no doubt there’s something not quite right.
  2. They are rude or talk down to the waiter.
  3. They get too close far too soon.  Love doesn’t normally work that way.  It takes time for bonds to form and love to grow.
  4. They are charming to the point of being beyond the realms of normality.  Trust that old saying, ‘If something appears too good to be true, it probably is.’
  5. They tell you of how their previous partners cheated, lied, were crazy etc.  They play the victim and have got you feeling sorry for them.  It wasn’t their fault.  Yes, you’ve got it…  They are the common denominator.  They are likely to be the one with the problem.
  6. They have a short supply of genuine friends.  Friends don’t usually hang around toxic people for lengthy periods of time.
  7. You do most of the talking.  They do the listening, figuring you out, knowing your likes and dislikes so they can pretend to be the person you want them to be.  However, once the relationship is established, they switch to talking about themselves which of course is a much more interesting subject!
  8. They criticise your friends and family hoping to create the division that will eventually lead to your isolation from everyone you once held dear.
  9. Although critical of others, they can’t stand a taste of their own medicine, being extremely sensitive to any form of criticism.
  10. You find yourself being compared to ex friends, ex partners and family.
  11. They rarely have anything good to say about anyone.
  12. You feel you have to walk on eggshells around this person.
  13. They demand most of your time.
  14. They hate to be alone.  They need people to provide them with their much needed narcissistic supply. Perhaps being alone allows too much time for self – reflection.
  15. They don’t respect your boundaries.
  16. They use passive aggressive behaviour, such as the cold shoulder, stonewalling and the silent treatment for some perceived slight.
  17. They have an uncontrollable rage / anger.
  18. Pathological lying.  They lie even when there’s absolutely no need to and truth would be a better option.
  19. They never accept responsibility for their faults or accept blame for anything untoward.  Nothing is ever their fault.
  20. This person causes chaos where there was once peace and calm. (Divide and conquer).
  21. They lack morals yet expects yours to be high.
  22. They insult you and if you are offended, they tell you that you’re being much too sensitive.
  23. They suggest what you should wear, how you should do your hair… Once again, this is all about control.
  24. They show their true colours to you whilst maintaining their ‘charm’ to the outside world.
  25. They lack empathy and are either unable or unwilling to put themselves in someone else’s shoes.
  26. They are constantly seeking compliments.
  27. This person has a grandiose view of themselves.  However, underneath their grandiosity, may lie a low self-esteem.
  28. They think that they have the ability to know what you are thinking. Only you know that.
  29. They are envious of others’ possessions and / or accomplishments.
  30. They like to be the centre of attention, expecting your praise for minor achievements; expecting their needs to be met, after all, they are much more important than yours.
  31. This person is a serial flirter.
  32. They show no remorse.
  33. If they treat you badly, you must have done something to deserve it!
  34. They have a strong sense of entitlement.
  35. They are jealous of close relationships that you may have.
  36. This person possesses the most fragile of egos.
  37. They acts like they are above the law, rules don’t apply to them.
  38. They rarely apologise, and if they do, it’s either insincere or in their best interests to do so.
  39. They believe they can only be understood by high achieving important people, like themselves.
  40. They are in good form one minute and in bad form the next.
  41. They hold grudges / hatred for a lifetime against those who they believe have wronged them in some way.
  42. They are preoccupied with their image, always wanting to look good in front of others.
  43. They don’t express genuine emotion.

In order to preserve your health and your sanity, keep your distance from toxic people and their flying monkeys as far as humanly possible. There are generally two sides to every story. There is the truth and then there is the toxic person’s version. Their version rarely comes close when it comes to the truth and their flying monkeys or enablers pass judgement without listening to both sides of the story. Be patient. No one can hide from the truth for ever.

Written by
Anne McCrea

(From Narcissistic and Emotional Abuse, Shattering the Illusion, now available on Amazon)

Amazon UK

Amazon US


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Source: AdinaVoicu/Pixabay

People are easily charmed by a narcissist, especially codependents. Narcissists can be beguiling and charismatic. In fact, one study showed that their likable veneer was only penetrable after seven meetings. I’ve had a number of clients who claimed that the courtship with their narcissistic spouse was wonderful, and that abuse only began after the wedding. However, with greater insight, they admitted that there were signs that they’d overlooked.

Blind Spots when Dating a Narcissist
There are unconscious explanations of why you might not spot a narcissist. Here are some reasons why you might not recognize a narcissist:

  1. Sexualattraction. The greater the physical attraction and sexual intensity, the easier it is to ignore red flags. Individuals who can see auras maintain that sexual energy literally obfuscates mental and emotional energy—why lust is blind.
  2. Seduction. Narcissists are skilled manipulators. Some can be quite seductive, and not just sexually. They may be adept listeners and communicators or allure you with flattery, self-disclosure, and vulnerability—just the opposite of what you might expect from a narcissist.
  3. Idealization. Often narcissists are very accomplished, successful, good-looking, powerful, and/or multi-talented. It’s easy to idealize them and want to share in the benefits of their exceptionalism, especially if you feel inferior. People with low self-esteem, such as codependents, are more likely to idealize someone they admire. They may be drawn to typical narcissistic traits that they themselves lack, such as power and boldness. The downside is that idealization makes us ignore contrary information.
  4. Familiarity. If you had a narcissistic parent, being with a narcissist will feel familiar—like family. This attraction happens beneath consciousness and is often referred to as “chemistry.” With personal therapy, this attraction can change so that you easily spot someone who is abusive or self-centered. You might even be repelled instead of attracted to a narcissist.
  5. Codependency. If you have low self-esteem or are codependent, you may be unaware of your feelings, which can guide you. You may not feel entitled to respect and having your needs and wants met. Most codependents tend to accommodate and people-please other people―a perfect fit for a narcissist. This predisposition is stronger in early dating when you’re trying to make a good impression. Thus, you might overlook or rationalize feelings of discomfort and anxiety that signal trouble. If something does bother you, you won’t speak up about it and try to forget it.

Red Flags when Dating a Narcissist
Below are some red flags to look out for. Having a few traits doesn’t mean that someone is diagnosable with NPD—a narcissistic personality disorder—but they do not bode well for a fulfilling relationship. One study found that when narcissists knew the symptoms of NPD, they readily admitted being a narcissist when asked. So you can ask, too, provided they know the traits. Need for admiration, lack of empathy, and grandiosity are key. Look for signs of arrogance and entitlement, too.

  • Self-centeredness. For narcissists, the world revolves around them. Other people are only two-dimensional, meaning that narcissists can’t empathize. They’re in their own reality and see you as an extension of themselves to satisfy their needs and wants. When you talk to your date, is he or she interested in getting to know you, or talk only about themselves? Amazingly, some people do, as if their listener doesn’t exist. This is a tell-tale sign that you will feel invisible in the relationship. If you felt invisible in your family, you might take this for granted. You could possibly feel validated by the attention you give as a good listener. Beware that this pattern will likely continue.

As mentioned above, some narcissists are skilled communicators and will appear fascinated by you, even mirror your interests to make you like them. They may be good at short-term intimacy and make you feel like a king or queen; but eventually, they don’t keep up that act. You’ll discover that their motive is to get what they want; for example, sex, but that they’re not interested in getting to know more about you, your family, problems, or successes.

Be aware of other signs of lack of consideration: walking far ahead of you, making you track them down for a return phone call, arriving late, disregarding your boundariesand needs, or interrupting conversations to take calls from other people.

  • Arrogance. Narcissists feel superior to other people, and can be rude or abusive when they don’t get what they want. This is revealed in their behavior and how they talk about themselves and others. Is your date a fault-finder who criticizes or blames others, the opposite sex, or an ex? One day, he or she may be bashing you. When you go out, notice how he or she treats waitresses, car hops, and vendors. Does he or she show other people respect, or act superior to other certain groups, such as minorities, immigrants, or people of less means or education?

Narcissists like to be associated with high-status people and institutions. They think they’re the best and want to surround themselves with the best. This is due to insecurity. Does your date think only his or her school is the best, and require the best car, the best table at the best restaurant, the finest wines, and wear expensive labels, or name drop public figures they know? This may impress you, but will later depress you when you feel ignored or like a prop in their life.

  • Entitlement. This trait is a giveaway. It reveals how narcissists think that they’re the center of the universe. They not only believe they’re special and superior to others, but also that they deserve special treatment and that rules don’t apply to them. Does your date refuse to turn off his or her cell phone at the movies, expect others to do favors, cut in line, steal things like tableware, airline blankets, or hotel ashtrays, or insist on special treatment from the parking attendant, restaurant maitre d’, or server? If you’re a woman, does he expect you to drive to his neighborhood? A relationship with this person will be painfully one-sided, not a two-way street. Narcissists are only interested in getting what they want and making the relationship work for them. If they are rude to others, they may one day abuseyou.
  • Bragging and need for admiration. Although narcissists want to believe they’re superior, they’re actually insecure. Hence, they need constant validation, appreciation, and recognition. They seek this by bragging about themselves and their accomplishments. They may even lie or exaggerate. People who brag are trying to convince themselves and you of their greatness.
  • Control and manipulation. Narcissists put their needs first. They may manipulate you with flattery, belittling, or threats. Their lack of empathy may show when planning a date. Time and place might be a difficult negotiation or on their terms, especially if they sense that you’re interested in them. Initially, they may want to please you to win you over, but once they’ve made their “catch,” they want to please themselves. It’s the chase, not the catch that motivates them. Once they’re victorious, they can lose interest, and move on to the next conquest before it gets too emotionally intimate. If not, they’ll be emotionally unavailable and keep you at a distance, because they’re afraid if you get too close, you won’t like what you see.

Some Tips
Listen to what your dates say about themselves and past relationships. Do they take responsibility or blame other people? Pay attention if they admit to serious shortcomings, commitment issues, infidelity, criminality, addiction, or abuse. Equally important, notice if you feel anxious or uncomfortable, pressured, controlled, ignored, or belittled.

Learn about narcissistic relationships, why narcissists are codependent, and why they’re drawn to codependents and vice versa. In recovering from codependency, you’ll build self-esteem, your estimation of your worth will rise, and you’ll expect to be considered, listened to, and treated well. You’ll convey an expectation of respect by maintaining healthy boundaries, by being assertiveabout your opinions, feelings, needs, and wants.

Learn about Dealing with a Narcissist.

© Darlene Lancer 2017.


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