By Rebecca Zung
Are you a victim of narcissistic behavior? Many experience the unkindness or selfishness that narcissists dole out. But, if you are unfamiliar with the traits of a narcissist, it can be difficult to comprehend why they behave in such hurtful ways. The cruel reality is that some narcissists take delight in hurting others and intentionally using certain tactics to make their victims more vulnerable to their whims. In this blog post, we will examine three of the most malicious behaviors used by narcissists and offer insight into understanding how best to protect yourself from them.
Number 1: The first cruel behaviors exhibited by narcissists is their tendency to engage in constant criticism and devaluation of their victims. This can manifest in overt ways, where they directly insult and belittle others, as well as in more passive-aggressive ways, typically associated with covert narcissism. In these cases, the victim may feel unsure about what exactly is happening, as the narcissist employs subtle tactics that undermine their self-worth and make them question their adequacy. It’s akin to experiencing death by a thousand cuts, where each criticism chips away at the victim’s sense of worth and leaves them feeling inadequate and worthless. This destructive pattern perpetuated by narcissists can have a profoundly distressing impact on their victims, causing immense emotional pain and damage to their self-esteem.
Number 2: Next, cruel behaviors exhibited by narcissists is withholding affection as a means of gaining leverage. This tactic is particularly prevalent in negotiations, which happens to be the area of my expertise. Deliberately withholding affection is not only a manipulative strategy employed by narcissists but also a deeply hurtful one. It is through these actions that they can exert control over others, exploiting their vulnerability and emotional needs.
Number 3: Lastly, one of the most cruel narcissistic behaviors is when narcissists shift the blame onto their partners for their own negative emotions. It can be deeply perplexing and incredibly damaging when narcissists consistently hold their partners responsible for any negative emotions they experience, even when it’s blatantly clear that the fault lies with the narcissist themselves. This behavior not only creates confusion and distress but also hampers the emotional well-being of their partners, making it difficult for them to establish a healthy and supportive relationship.
To conclude, the narcissist’s behaviors are like a nightmare that never seems to end. From devaluing their victims, to gaslighting them into questioning their experience and reality, to offering empty apologies, it can be difficult for those caught in the storm of a toxic relationship with a narcissist to find clarity and peace. Reaching out to get help is an important step in creating boundaries around undesired behavior. If you know someone experiencing manipulative behavior, provide support and encourage them to seek out professionals for assistance. Remember that no one deserves mistreatment. Everyone has a right to respect and kindness from those closest to them and themselves; so do what needs doing now and take back control of your life or another’s well-being. Be empowered. Be strong. Be proactive about looking after yourself and others who may be in vulnerable positions surrounding the narcissist.