Explore Signs of a Narcissist Girlfriend
In recent years the term narcissist has become overused and is commonly associated with people who think a little too much of themselves, who’s vain or obsessed with how they look or how many followers they have. The reality of true narcissism is a much more worrying picture – and something that can destroy all relationship types – whether it’s family, friendships, or romantic relationships.
A narcissist suffers from a mental health condition narcissistic personality disorder, and causes several different personality defects that often cause distress to the people around them. The main characteristics of narcissistic personality disorder include:
- Lack of empathy for others and animals.
- Continued relationship problems across the board (work/home/school).
- Want or need excessive attention.
- High or exaggerated level of self-importance.
- Selfishness at the expense of others.
- Inability to think about the emotion or feelings of others.
As a mental health disorder, there is no black and white checklist for meeting a Narcissist Personality Disorder diagnosis. However, the following nine criteria are considered the official criteria for diagnosing a narcissist.
- High level of self-importance.
- Obsession and fantasies about future unlimited power and success.
- Belied they will only be understood by other “special” or “high status” individuals.
- Need for excessive admiration.
- Lack of empathy.
- Envy of others/belief others is envious of them.
- Sense of entitlement.
- High level of arrogance.
- Interpersonally exploitative behavior.
As the above list shows, living with or having a relationship with a narcissist or someone with narcissistic tendencies can be extremely difficult and destructive. However, if you’re not a psychologist what signs can you look out for at home, to know whether your girlfriend is experiencing true narcissistic female behaviour and whether she could be a female narcissist sociopath?
Characteristics of a Narcissist Woman
There are no huge differences between how men and women narcissists will behave. However, some studies have found that men who suffer from long-term NPD often have a slightly stronger experience of the disorder's characteristics. However, as a rule, spotting a narcissistic girlfriend is the same way as you would try to spot a narcissistic boyfriend, parent, friend, family member, or colleague.
If you’re worried that your girlfriend might be a narcissist (or you’re worried someone else in your life could be) the following list of characteristics can help you work out why certain people treat you in the way they do.
How to Spot a Narcissist in a Relationship
Many people think women are unable to be narcissists – a quick google search for “can a woman be a narcissist” will bring up thousands of instant responses. The truth is, both men and women can suffer from NPD – so it’s important everyone knows how to spot narcissistic spouse signs:
They Won’t Define or Continue to Redefine the Relationship
Not wanting to label a relationship doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a bad thing. However, a common narcissist trait is to make you feel like you’re in a committed relationship to enjoy the benefits, while not putting a label on it allows them to still portray themselves as single and use you until a better relationship prospect (or better benefits) come along. Not defining a relationship on it’s own shouldn’t be a red flag, but if you find yourself ticking off other things on this list – it’s a way how you can tell if someone is a narcissist.
They Make Jokes About You
Like not wanting to label a relationship, teasing on it’s own isn’t always a bad thing within a relationship. However, ongoing teasing that becomes increasingly worse, or repeated teasing over things you’ve expressed you’re uncomfortable with, can be huge signs your girlfriend is a narcissist. This action helps a narcissist lower your self-esteem and increase their own and convince you that it’s over. This is the beginning of destroying the power balance in a narcissistic relationship.
Gaslighting is a relatively new term in the world of relationships – and gaslighting isn’t reserved only for people who have NPD, but it is one of the biggest tell-tale signs of the disorder. Often narcissist women will tell lies or spin the truth to distort your sense of reality and question your own emotions and reactions to different situations and their behaviour towards you and other people. If your current partner is gas lighting you, you might find yourself experiencing:
- Disconnection with your “old self.”
- Worries about being over-sensitive.
- Saying sorry too often.
- The decrease in confidence.
- Increase in anxiety levels.
- Feeling like everything you do is wrong.
- Worried about how to respond to your partner.
- Making excuses to yourself and others about your partners' behavior.
- Feeling like something is wrong, constantly.
They’re Always Right
One of the biggest and most common things narcissists do believes they are right about absolutely everything. It is impossible to argue with a narcissist – they will always be right, and better still, they will always be helping you by educating you about what’s right and therefore doing you a favor.
When it comes to relationships and especially disagreements within that relationship, if your partner is a narcissist, you can quickly feel like they don’t listen to you, don’t understand you, won’t take responsibility for their actions, and will never and ever compromise.
A narcissist in a relationship believes they are doing you a favour by inviting you to share their great life with you but have little interest in your dreams or aspirations because theirs are better. For this reason, to protect your mental health and retain your sanity, it’s important not to engage in negotiations and to avoid arguments with your narcissistic partner.
Whether you’re late for a meal, the car windows were left open overnight, or they backed out of plans with your family at the last minute – it will always be your fault (or at a push a third party), but it will never be due to them, and they will make sure other people know this too – how you’d be nowhere without them organizing your life and helping them out constantly.
They Won’t Allow You to End Things
Narcissists truly believe they are perfect and anyone in their life is lucky to be there with such a wonderful friend/parent/partner – and the idea that anyone would ever want to walk away from them is beyond impossible realize. They will use every tool in their power, even admitting fault for maybe the first time in your relationship to get you to stay with them and believe they have changed. This admittance of their bad behaviour makes many victims feel like – because it’s the first time they have admitted fault – that they really will change, but it’s just part of their plan to keep you by their side and within weeks, if not days they will be back to their narcissistic traits.
No Long-Term Friendships or Family Relationships
A narcissist is often surrounded by people because they use them for their benefits. It’s hard to spot a narcissist at first as they usually have hundreds of friends and contacts they see regularly – but the lack of family relationships or long-term friends can be a huge red flag. Over time the cracks in a narcissist begin to show, and many people walk away or are dropped by the narcissist themselves when they no longer have a use for them. Narcissists will often be unhappy with maintaining relationships with friends and family, often making you feel you have chosen your friends over them because they never see their friends.
Lack of Empathy
You’ve never seen them cry at a film; they don’t spot a smile at children or beautiful sights, they have no responsibility to people experiencing pain or suffering – if any of these sound familiar, your girlfriend might be displaying signs of NPD. Equally, if it feels like they never ask how you are, or how your day was, or they never want to hear about or discuss your emotions, it could be a huge red flag.
About Relationships with Narcissist Women
Relationships with anyone narcissistic can be tough, and often – especially without being prompted – will a narcissist realize their behavior isn’t normal and seek help for it. Often, it’s best to leave the relationship entirely and move on with someone new after a period of healing. It’s also important to consider that if you try to make it work with a narcissist, it is unlikely they will stop and ask themselves “how to stop being a narcissist in a relationship” and continue their negative pattern of behavior with any future children too.
However, as with all mental health conditions, even narcissistic behavior in a relationship can be stopped with the help of either medicines or therapy, or a combination for the two, and over time the symptoms can be easily managed, making it easier to take the relationship forward and consider things like starting a family or living together.
If you suspect you or your partner are experiencing narcissistic symptoms, relationship councilors can be the best place to start and help you and your relationship get back on track. Otherwise, speak to a medical or mental health professional with the approval of your partner.