STOP RIGHT THERE! YOU ARE DATING A NARCISSIST Part 2
I hear the term narcissist thrown around too freely and much too often. Firstly, let me explain to you what a narcissist is NOT. It is not a crafty term used to blanket the fact that this man is not into you. Life happens!
However, there are many signs and characteristics that detail narcissistic behavior. My list will not cover all of the signs, but I will touch upon the ones that I have experienced.
In the simplest of words, a narcissist has a magnified self-perception of identity. A narcissist above all else has low self-esteem although it may not be easily detected. The behavior may be a ramification or consequence of childhood issues. Perhaps the child was bullied, or genetics, or parenting styles. It could stem from a range of things.
Example: I was dating a guy, (a comedian whose name I will not mention… (let us call him Jesse) He had game! He was charming and an awesome conversationalist. We talked on the phone for 9 hours during our first phone conversation. I was drawn in by his beliefs and the lifestyle he spoke about. And when he spoke about the love he had for his children…On our first date, we visited a small comedy club. He was well-known and it became noticeable as we entered. He introduced me to his peers. As Jesse was attending to other friends, one of them was making passes at me. This guy actually asked me to go out with him after the show was over. When he noticed, I could feel the walls closing in, and then he was swallowed whole by the room as his emotionally helpless hand reached for mine. He never said a word to the guy. He told me he would talk to him later. I watched him and it was visibly obvious that he felt bad about the situation. I also knew that he would not confront this guy because he was intimidated. (low self-esteem)
When the clock struck twelve midnight, he began yelling out, “Happy Birthday to me!” and he did so over and over. I was a little embarrassed. And then Jesse leaned over to me and asked me if I had googled him. That struck me as strange. I had no idea it was his birthday. Now he had drawn attention to himself. People walked by to the leave the club barely celebrating him on his self-proclaimed holiday.
He was MANIPULATIVE. After we left the club, we went out to eat. He confessed his feelings on the first date and placed me on a pedestal by telling people how pretty I was and drawing them into me. He went so far as to introduce me as his wife. Many women would be taken by this, but I viewed it as a way to compensate himself for how inadequate he felt at the club that night. At that moment, I felt sorry for him. When I got home that night, I googled him. I found that he had hosted the Showtime at the Apollo. I was a little impressed, but I did not mention it to him.
His second attempt at proving himself or putting both himself and I on this pedestal occurred on our second date. He had a young lady to proposition him in my presence just so he could tell her that I was his girl. He was sinking. At the time, I did not realize these tactics. In fact, I was stunned by how he handled it.
All the while that he was building me up, he was tearing me down by criticizing me. And it hit me like a tidal wave. Jesse did not like the television shows that enjoyed. He went so far as to say that I did not talk to him the way Michelle Obama spoke to her husband, Barack Obama. I was hurt because for a time, he made me feel that I was good to him. I wanted to do better. He had convinced me that I was the problem. Doing better would not salvage the relationship. I was breaking down by how he was never responsible for his actions and that my cries fell on deaf ears. He was more than aloof. Jesse showed a LACK OF EMPATHY. He tried to invoke jealousy by speaking on other women and how phenomenal they were. I think that was his way of bringing me down. The straw that broke the camel’s back is when he told me that he was a celebrity after a disagreement we had. GRANDIOSITY…He picked the perfect career choice by being a comedian because he could mask his pain by entertaining others and maintain their attention by deflecting. That was when I reached my breaking point and told him that Jamie Foxx is a celebrity. Jesse was only a fan with a backstage pass. I was done.
My next encounter with a narcissist was different. Although Jesse and this guy who we will call Ryan both exhibited narcissist traits…their behaviors were slightly different. Ryan was polished and exercised more decorum than Jesse. Ryan emotionally bombarded me with compliments early on. It looks good on paper, but there was a lot of pressure with this one because he was a perfectionist. He came into the relationship with a list of things about what he liked his woman to wear, and the hairstyle he most favored. I was under tremendous pressure because all I wanted and ever want to be is me. He called me guarded often which made me feel emotionally bullied into releasing more of myself. I was not ready. And felt it was too early to go in so strong. He was a perfectionist and thought he was overly deserving of things. (ENTITLED) It seemed that he was building walls to mask and protect any chance of vulnerability. Narcissist…if you ask me, I think they try to beat us to the punch by causing the pain they fear will be inflicted upon them. Ryan would immediately try to berate me like a child and hurriedly discontinue our phone conversation if I said something that he did not agree with, or if I attempted to address any issues. He was emotionally bulletproof by his own doing. When I was sick, he would be so non-responsive that you could hear a rat piss on carpet. He was highly irritative.
Things Ryan did were for show. For example, he staged events to appear interesting and important. He put up an enormous Pharcyde to convince everyone that he was mighty. He often broke plans without actually breaking the plans verbally. The truth is, in many cases, this is the scheme of things. They do NOT follow through. I told him of the importance of my being heard, but he muted me with his silence and I eventually faded into my own shadow. I was not going down the path of emotional abuse.
Although, it may seem that I walked away like a champ, parts of me suffered and I struggled. Both relationships were contaminated. The moods and inconsistency put a soil on my soul. Please tune in next week for my final installment of STOP RIGHT THERE! YOU ARE DATING A NARCISSIST! same place and same time where I will share with you what I know about recovery, recoupment, self-defense, and how to survive the aftermath of dating a narcissist! Bye for now.