Most people think they can spot a narcissist quickly; however, the loudest and most intrusive person in the room is usually not your typical narcissist. They often prefer to stay covered in a crowd at the beginning and exude an inconspicuous charm, but often appear very self-confident. Sometimes we notice certain typical behavior patterns of a narcissist too late.
Not all of the following signs are an absolute prerequisite for the quick discovery of a narcissist, but they can help us to „unmask“ them faster.
The following signs can signal a potentially narcissistic person. Any person, regardless of gender, can be a narcissist. We use the masculine form here for the sake of simplicity.
- Extremely charming
He senses what you would like to hear and then says exactly the “right thing”. So if you think you have met the partner of your dreams, it is very possible that he is a narcissist who knows exactly how to use his charms. Because anyone can rarely resist their charm, this is the first step in taking power over you.
- The magic of his attention
His undivided attention gives you the impression that you have found a unique bond. He feels your need for harmony and empathy, he himself is not able to feel true empathy though.
- Shared interests
Your interests supposedly seem to mirror all of his interests, making you the perfect prey to a narcissist because you are quickly lulled and infatuated by the many similarities. He does this not out of true interest or charity, but to gain control.
- Plays with your feelings
He will admit his deep feelings for you as soon as possible and lure you further into his trap. He also confesses his „romantic“ feelings more than most other people, on a daily basis. At the moment this probably feels great, but in retrospective you realize how exaggerated and over the top this behavior was.
- Special gifts
To further spin his plan of manipulation, a narcissist likes to give great gifts, which in turn makes you feel like you’ve hit the absolute jackpot and are being very much appreciated. That gives you the feeling that you can’t just let someone like that go, because who else is this attentive? However, as soon as he knows that you have fallen into his trap and that you feel a sense of belonging with him, the gifts will decrease drastically, since you are now trapped.
- Constantly present
A narcissist is constantly present, either through phone calls or loving text messages. In doing so, he ensures that you will always remember him.
- Self reflection
This is almost impossible for a narcissist. This often results in strongly criticizing and degrading behavior towards you.
- There are no apologies
A narcissist cannot take responsibility for his actions or his behavior. If you ask for an apology, this is usually met with criticism of you or ends in more manipulation or gaslighting (*see next point for further explanation).
Often times, in a relationship with a narcissist, you experience some form of degradation, which further confuses you. He will assign you a clear place in the “hierarchy” and will do everything to ensure that you stay in that position. He does this in order to maintain his own position of power. He will convince you that it is your own fault that you were hurt and you will hear statements like „you are too sensitive“.