How to Handle a Narcissist |

How to deal with a narcissist

You could be concerned about if your spouse, coworker, or relative is narcissistic. While many people exhibit what medical professionals refer to as narcissistic tendencies, such as arrogance and the belief that they are entitled to something, dealing with those who have narcissistic personality disorder can be more difficult.

Living with a narcissist necessitates the development of new or more sophisticated emotional skills, according to Kimberly Perlin, a clinical social worker with a licence in Towson, Maryland. She treats narcissists and specialises in assisting women in relationships with them.

It may be annoying and emotionally taxing to be around narcissists. Your connection can be centred around them. They may make you feel judged and worn out.

Carla Marie Manly, PhD, a clinical psychologist in Santa Rosa, California, didn't know her elder brother was a narcissist when she was a youngster. Growing up with this incredibly dominating individual was quite difficult, she claims. "I didn't realise this sibling was a deeply troubled narcissist until I was in my adult years."

How to Spot a Narcissist

Grandiosity is a major trait among narcissists. That implies they frequently seek attention and believe themselves to be more significant than others.

The ideal example is one of Perlin's customers. When he viewed my new website and was offended that it didn't include him, a client with whom I had been working for years ended treatment, according to her.

Narcissists typically:

  • have a great feeling of grandiosity (they frequently feel superior to others and have high degrees of self-worth, self-importance, and self-confidence)
  • Need constant admiration
  • Take advantage of others to get what they want
  • Believe others envy them
  • Exaggerate achievements and talents
  • Believe they’re unique or special
  • Are arrogant
  • Feel envy toward others
  • Have a sense of entitlement
  • Lack empathy
  • Are obsessed with fantasies of brilliance, power, or success

Narcissists and relationships

Manly gained a lot of knowledge about narcissists by dealing with her older brother and from her own experiences. "I've discovered that narcissists live for themselves. They frequently think they are faultless and assign blame to others for problems that occur at work, at home, or in social settings, she claims.

Narcissists will go to any lengths to achieve their goals. In general, they lack empathy and are unable to form strong connections with others, not even those closest to them.

A narcissist may crave adulation at work, even if it harms other people. They could mistreat coworkers, take credit for other people's efforts, or alter their behaviour to win the approval of superiors. There is frequently more to them than meets the eye, even if they may appear to be kind and diligent.

A narcissist may have an effect on the entire family at home. A narcissist who is in an intimate relationship with you could be very critical of you, aloof from you, and contemptuous of you. You could feel alone, disregarded, and invisible. If your parent is a narcissist, you could have experienced neglect or abuse as a youngster.

A narcissist should occasionally be avoided, especially if they are abusive.

I've decided to take a step back from investing in a close relationship with my sibling for the sake of my mental health, says Manly. She recognises that her sister doesn't see their actions to be problematic and that a continued relationship with her sibling would just make things worse because they have no interest in improving themselves.

Expect it to be difficult if you're in a relationship with a narcissist. In Folsom, California, clinical psychologist Forrest Talley, PhD, warns, "Buckle up, it will be a very bumpy ride." It will be a relationship that is quite stressful.

What to do with a narcissist

Follow these guidelines to deal with narcissists:

Educate yourself

Learn more about the condition. You can learn how to deal with the narcissist's strengths and shortcomings by better understanding them. Knowing who they are could also help you have reasonable expectations and accept the situation for what it is.

Create boundaries

Be frank about your limitations. It's okay if it annoys or disappoints the narcissist. Keep in mind that you are not in charge of that person's feelings, advises Perlin.

Speak up for yourself

Always be succinct and straightforward when stating your needs. Make sure they comprehend your request, advises Perlin. 

Watch your wording

Manly asserts that narcissists have trouble accepting constructive criticism. Make an effort to remark thoughtfully and positively.

Stay calm

If they try to argue with you or gaslight you, try not to respond. (making you doubt your reality). If they lash out, Talley advises seeing them as a 3-year-old who feels abandoned because their mom has set a bedtime.

Create a support system

Living with a narcissist may make you feel uncertain, confused, and self-conscious. Make sure you have a core group of individuals who can assist you in your life, advises Talley.

Bring in a counsellor

Although therapy won't make your partner less narcissistic, it could help you resolve certain issues. You can learn how to approach problem-solving with the narcissist from a counsellor.

What not to do with a narcissist

Avoiding certain situations is advised since they may set off issues with narcissists.

Don’t argue or confront

Manly believes it's preferable to avoid confrontation with narcissists. Even if it would be challenging to avoid them at all costs, it might be preferable to accommodate their demand to be in charge.

Don’t try to direct them

Narcissists enjoy being in charge and frequently worry about losing it. Manly asserts that attempts to mentor or train a narcissist "will frequently fail."

Don’t expect them to see your point of view

Making narcissists see things your way might not work since they don't want to confess when they're wrong or that they're unlovable.

Don’t expect deep, meaningful communication

Since narcissists lack empathy, honest, sincere communication frequently fails and may even provoke an angry outburst or a shutdown reaction, according to Manly.

Don’t go over past issues

Don't try to convince them that their actions have a lengthy history or that, for instance, they are eerily similar to their father, advises Perlin. When you convey wishes or injured sentiments, stay in the moment.

Keep in mind that people with narcissistic personality disorder typically don't change. Your relationship probably won't ever be healthy, even if you learn to handle it better.


What is the best way to handle a narcissist?

  1. Try To Avoid Direct Confrontation.
  2. Remind Yourself That You Are Not To Blame.
  3. Reiterate Your Need For Action Over Promises.
  4. Maintain Boundaries.
  5. Acknowledge When You Need Professional Help.
  6. Don't Accept Their Behavior.
  7. Know When You Need To Leave A Relationship.

How to handle a narcissist in a relationship?

  1. Educate yourself on narcissistic personality disorder.
  2. Don't internalize hurtful comments.
  3. Don't idealize your partner.
  4. Get your therapist.
  5. Set clear boundaries.
  6. Communicate how their actions affect you.
  7. Develop a support network.

How do you handle a narcissistic person?

  1. Educate yourself about NPD.
  2. Set clear boundaries.
  3. Build your self-esteem.
  4. Speak up for yourself.
  5. Find a support system.
  6. Practice skills to keep calm.
  7. Insist on immediate action, not promises.
  8. Understand that a narcissistic person may need professional help.

Best how to handle a narcissistic boss?

  1. Remind Yourself of Your Value.
  2. Keep a Paper Trail.
  3. Network for Yourself.
  4. Get Outside Support.
  5. Take Time for Reflection.
  6. Compliment Them Frequently.
  7. Remember Who You're Dealing With.
  8. Diversify Your Work Experience or Role.

How to successfully handle a narcissist?

  1. Reiterate Your Need For Action Over Promises.
  2. Maintain Boundaries.
  3. Try To Avoid Direct Confrontation.
  4. Remind Yourself That You Are Not To Blame.
  5. Don't Accept Their Behavior.
  6. Know When You Need To Leave A Relationship.
  7. Acknowledge When You Need Professional Help.

How do you handle a narcissistic husband

  1. Educate yourself about NPD.
  2. Set clear boundaries.
  3. Build your self-esteem.
  4. Speak up for yourself.
  5. Find a support system.
  6. Practice skills to keep calm.
  7. Insist on immediate action, not promises.
  8. Understand that a narcissistic person may need professional help.


It's difficult to coexist with a narcissist. There are things you can do to keep strong, supported, and psychologically healthy even if it might be demanding and tough.

Keep in mind that you are not the issue, and try not to take their actions personally. Establish clear boundaries, safeguard your self-worth, and look for supportive relationships with others who can relate to your situation.

Last but not least, keep in mind that you don't need to wait until a relationship becomes poisonous to quit it. The best thing you can do for your mental health is frequently to leave the circumstance.