Narcissism. It’s seems like it’s everywhere. Across self-help YouTube channels and books, how to spot a narcissist is now a common part of modem life. It makes one wonder why this self-absorption is so common place now and why is it so commonly associated with millennials.
Narcissism is not simply one having self-adoration of their looks, rather it’s now seen as a mental health condition based off the philosophical underpinnings of solipsism; the concept of the self being the centre of the universe.
As such, the hallmarks are now widely discussed and ever present. However, as Steven Fisackerly (couple’s counsellor and author) points out, rather than dismiss the issue and discard the person from your life, he outlines coping mechanisms instead. He argues that whilst people recognize it as a mental health issue, so often people don’t treat it with the same label of compassion as other issues relating to personal well-being.
Here are some vital things to remember and utilize when your partner is clearly a narcissist.
Remember What You Are Dealing With
Allowing people to behave well and given freedom to be positive is an important part of healing and improving their welfare. However, as Fisackerly points out, always remember what you are dealing with. Narcissist’s, when they are feeling low, will often look to make someone close to them feel worse than they do. As a result, look to protect yourself when you sense a problematic low mood from your boyfriend or girlfriend.
If the mood becomes quiet or snappy or typically obstinate to an agreed activity together, remember you aren’t always dealing with a very happy person and as such their coping mechanisms aren’t attuned as other more adjusted people.
This is the first step as Steven Fisackerly identifies to managing a narc through compassion rather than avoidance.
When ones partner begins to demonstrate low mood, expect some level of provocation. It could simply be silent treatment excused as not feeling well or doing something you have previously admitted deeply frustrates you. The very objective here is for reaction.
Look for this as a sign to begin your own circuit breaker. Witness any sense of adrenaline spike and changes to your own emotional state. Using something called an anchor, which is a set of words you use to describe this person and what’s happening when you were more rested. Say these to yourself whilst visualizing yourself talking practically to her without any emotions. When replying with a pseudo stupidity so as to distract the person from the any seriousness to the conflict to take the power back
Engage in activity where focus is on something else
Allowing this will enable a better mood climate to then offer a new activity to do. If this person was disappointing you with a last minute let down, find something independent of this to undertake yourself and be free to allow him or her to join.
This pattern of behavior has a short to midterm affect as ultimately it takes a lot of patience to mentally care for someone who is inside the relationship with you. But as a methodology towards someone you genuinely love, it is an advancement into the behaviors psychology towards the condition.