9 things a narcissist will do when you finally stick up for yourself

There’s a vast difference between standing up for yourself and provoking a fight.

The difference lies in respect.

Provoking a fight is about asserting dominance while ignoring the feelings of the other person.

Standing up for yourself, however, is about claiming your respect.

Dealing with a narcissist can be a tricky affair.

And savvy folks know that there are certain reactions you can expect when you finally assert yourself.

Here are 9 behaviors to look out for when you finally stand up to a narcissist.

1) They will play the victim

Narcissists have an uncanny ability to deflect responsibility.

And those who have dealt with them are all too familiar with this.

Victim playing is a psychological term that refers to people who habitually create scenarios where they are the victims, in order to gain sympathy or evade responsibility.

Think about it. It’s like those characters in movies who always seem to get hurt and then blame others for their misfortune.

When you finally assert yourself, a narcissist may react by claiming that they are being treated unfairly or that you are being too harsh on them.

So if you’re prepared for this, you can handle it better.

But remember, standing up for yourself doesn’t mean you’re being mean.

It simply means you’re demanding respect.

2) They’ll try to belittle your feelings

There was a time when I finally decided to voice my concerns to a narcissistic friend.

His immediate response? He brushed off my feelings as if they were insignificant.

Welcome to the world of emotional invalidation.

Emotional invalidation is a manipulative behavior where they dismiss your feelings, making you question your own emotional reactions.

Think about it. It’s like being in a conversation where you’re sharing your genuine emotions, only for someone to tell you that you’re overreacting or being too sensitive.

When I stood up for myself, my friend immediately tried to make me feel like I was wrong for feeling the way I did.

So if you’re prepared for this tactic, you can ensure that you stand firm in your feelings and not let them manipulate the situation.

But remember, your feelings are valid and they matter, don’t let anyone make you feel otherwise.

3) They’ll resort to gaslighting

Gaslighting is a form of psychological manipulation where the perpetrator makes the victim question their sanity, perception of reality, or memories.

Interestingly, the term originates from a 1938 play (and later a 1944 film) called “Gas Light“, where a husband manipulates his wife into believing she’s losing her mind.

It’s a particularly dangerous form of manipulation because it can be so subtle that you might not even realize it’s happening.

They could deny things they’ve said or done, distort facts and reality, and make you question your memory or judgment.

Being prepared for this tactic can save you from the confusion and self-doubt it can create.

Remember, trust your instincts and your memory.

You’re not crazy, they’re just trying to make you think you are.

4) They’ll give you the silent treatment

Silence is golden, but not when it’s used as a weapon.

In narcissistic behavior, the silent treatment is another common tool.

The silent treatment is a form of emotional abuse where they ignore or refuse to communicate with you.

It’s a way for them to assert control and make you feel insignificant.

This could mean ignoring your calls, texts, or even physically avoiding you.

So be prepared, this tactic can feel incredibly isolating and is designed to make you cave into their demands.

But remember, everyone deserves respect and open communication in any relationship. Don’t let their silence manipulate you into backing down.

5) They’ll attempt to charm you

Charm can be deceiving, especially when it’s used as a manipulation tool by narcissists.

They are often charismatic individuals, who know how to use their charm to their advantage.

This is often why they are able to draw people towards them in the first place.

When you stand up to a narcissist, they may decide to turn on the charm.

This could mean complimenting you excessively, making grand gestures of affection, or promising to change their behavior.

But be cautious, this is usually just another tactic to regain control and make you drop your guard.

Remember, actions speak louder than words.

Don’t let their charm distract you from the underlying issue at hand. Stand firm in your decision to assert yourself.

6) They’ll try to make you feel guilty

Guilt is a powerful emotion, and narcissists know how to wield it like a sword.

They have a knack for making you feel guilty for standing up for yourself.

They’ll twist the narrative, making it seem like you’re the one hurting them.

When you finally take a stand, they might imply that you’re being selfish or unkind.

They could even bring up past instances where they’ve helped you, suggesting that you owe them.

It’s heartbreaking to be made to feel guilty for simply demanding respect.

But always remember, it’s not selfish to take care of yourself and demand respect.

Don’t let their guilt-tripping make you back down.

7) They’ll question your loyalty

I remember a time when I stood up to a narcissistic friend. Instead of addressing my concerns, she questioned my loyalty.

She made it seem like my decision to assert myself was a betrayal.

This is a common tactic. They often question your loyalty when you stand up for yourself.

They might suggest that you don’t care about them or that you’re being disloyal.

It’s a difficult situation to be in, especially when you genuinely care about the person.

Regardless, standing up for yourself doesn’t mean you’re disloyal.

Don’t let their accusations sway your resolve.

8) They’ll resort to personal attacks

When all else fails, a narcissist might resort to character assassination.

Personal attacks are a common tool when they feel cornered.

Instead of addressing the issue at hand, they might start attacking your character, making derogatory comments, or calling you names.

Be prepared for potential personal attacks.

They might try to undermine your self-esteem to regain control.

But remember, these attacks are a reflection of their character, not yours.

Don’t let their words shake your self-worth..

9) They’ll threaten to leave

They understand that the fear of losing them can be a powerful motivator.

This is designed to make you back down, to scare you into submission.

But remember this: anyone who threatens to leave you for simply demanding respect and decency doesn’t have your best interests at heart.

You’re not losing a person, you’re gaining self-respect. Let them walk. You deserve better.

Final thoughts: It’s about self-respect

At the heart of this journey is a simple yet powerful truth – you are worthy of respect.

Dealing with a narcissist can be challenging, but standing up for yourself amidst this challenge is a testament to your strength and self-worth.

From clinical psychologists to survivors of narcissistic abuse, the consensus remains clear: maintaining your self-respect in the face of a narcissist’s manipulation is an act of courage.

Whether it’s navigating through gaslighting, enduring silent treatments, or resisting guilt trips, your resilience in these situations reflects your commitment to your mental health and wellbeing.

Remember, you’re not alone in this.

There are countless others who have walked this path before and emerged stronger.

Ultimately, dealing with a narcissist isn’t just about understanding their tactics.

It’s about reinforcing your boundaries, reaffirming your self-worth, and standing up for yourself – because you deserve nothing less.

Ava Sinclair

Ava Sinclair is a former competitive athlete who transitioned into the world of wellness and mindfulness. Her journey through the highs and lows of competitive sports has given her a unique perspective on resilience and mental toughness. Ava’s writing reflects her belief in the power of small, daily habits to create lasting change.

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