When you first start dating someone, it can be easy to focus only on their good points and miss some blatantly obvious red flags. In fact, it can often take a long time before these signs become clear to you, and then you’re in a deeply committed relationship. Narcissism is one of the most common personality disorders characterized by an inflated sense of self and lacking empathy for others. Here are some warning signs that you may be dating a narcissist.
Shower You With Affection Early On
It undoubtedly feels nice to be appreciated by someone you’re interested in. However, if they start the relationship by constantly showering you with affection or even dropping The L Word way too soon, the person you’re dating might be a narcissist. This is a classic sign that they’re trying to win you over by proving how much they love you by inundating you with sweet sentiments, only for it to fall off once the relationship has reached a certain point.
Can’t Take Blame or Criticism
If you notice that your significant other is constantly on the defense and never willing to admit that anything is their fault, then the chances are that person has narcissist tendencies. Narcissists are usually highly self-absorbed and have trouble taking criticism for their actions or taking the blame when they do something wrong.
Always Bring the Focus Back to Themselves
Another clear sign that you’re dating a narcissist is that they constantly revert the conversation towards themselves when having conversations or arguments. They may even praise themselves or focus on their needs instead of whatever you’re discussing.
Start to Control You
While narcissists are typically incredibly self-centered, they also can be very insecure. This can lead to them trying to take control of the relationship. They may ultimately take control of you and your actions, dictating what you can and can’t do, who you can see, what friends you can be around, etc.
Judgmental of You
The last clear sign that you’re dating a narcissist is when you notice that your partner is highly judgmental of you while being unable to take criticism of themselves. This is usually because they have to find a way to feel superior to others, and they do so by making you feel diminished in some way.
Keep in mind that only a mental health professional can diagnose a narcissist; it’s important to remember that no relationship should make you feel inferior. Evaluate your relationship to consider if it is healthy or if you should seek additional support and resources.