Relationship Stages With A Narcissist Or Borderline And Triangulation

So you thought you’d finally met the woman or man of your dreams. Sure, they came on a little strong at first. The compliments seemed a bit excessive and even premature.

- Advertisement -

Ignoring that nagging voice in your head, the relationship developed at a fast pace, faster than most of your other relationships and friendships.

At some point, perhaps you questioned their sincerity and insta-adoration? Maybe you even had doubts about them such as, “Is this person psycho or is it love at first sight?” After all, how can someone really know you well enough after just a few weeks (or a few days) to see all of your admirable qualities in such technicolor magnificence? How can someone who barely knows you seriously love you in such a short amount of time and be willing to commit to you so quickly?

The answers are they don’t and they can’t. You were being drugged with flattery, or love bombed.

A client once asked, “Well come on, what guy wouldn’t fall for a beautiful woman who says you’re the most amazing man she’s ever known and best sex she’s ever had?” Actually, quite a lot of men and women don’t fall for it. In fact, they become skeptical and concerned especially if the compliments are way over the top and they’re being pressured to make a fast commitment (e.g., going engagement ring shopping after only a week or wanting to move in together right away).

Relationships with narcissists, borderlines, histrionics, sociopaths — whatever the DSM classification may be — begin in reverse.

Meaning the relationship starts with a really intense, decadent dessert, and by the relationship’s end you’re dumpster diving for the measliest scraps of sustenance. A relationship between two emotionally mature individuals with boundaries and healthy senses of self develops steadily over time and builds up to dessert after pesky little things like friendship, intimacy and trust have been established.

Not so with narcissists and other emotional predators and con artists. They’re like the stereotypical used car salesmen or sales women of relationships. For example:

Well hello there, Carl/Connie Codependent, do I have a deal for you today! Only someone as smart, savvy, sophisticated, cultured, traveled, intuitive, honest, loving, handsome, beautiful, sexy, talented, blah, blah, blah as you can see what a GREAT opportunity this is. And because you’re soooooo special to me, I’m going to offer this deal to you and only you (wink, wink, nudge, nudge). Your life will never be the same if you hitch your wagon to my star. Together we’ll create crazy works of genius! What do you mean it sounds too good to be true? I thought you were more intelligent than that? It’s okay, I forgive you for doubting my motives. Now, I’ll just need you to sign here, here and here. Don’t worry about that, it’s just the fine print. Yes, and the devil is in the details.

Now, if an unscrupulous salesperson slithered up to you at the local used car lot and laid it on nice and thick like that, wouldn’t you reflexively raise an eyebrow to their patter? You’d wonder, and rightly so, if the salesperson was trying to unload shoddy goods for their own personal gain at significant cost to you. No matter how shiny and attractively presented a narcissist might appear to be at first glance, under the hood they’re all lemons. And not the plump, juicy ripe lemons from which you can make lemonade. They’re the hard kind that only yield a few drops of juice even when using an industrial grade juicer.

It’s a painful thing to accept once your narcissist reveals who they truly are. Seeing behind the mask may cause you to go into extreme denial. How else could you stay after that, right? If you don’t understand the dynamics at play, it’s difficult to comprehend how things deteriorated from the initial intense love fest you shared with your narcissist to being vilified and tossed away onto the scrap heap. It’s actually pretty easy to grasp once you know how relationships with narcissists and borderlines begin, develop and devolve. Abusive personalities repeat these patterns over and over again with each new target and relationship.

 

The Stages Of A Relationship With A Narcissist

There are three predictable relationship stages with most narcissists, borderlines, histrionics or sociopaths: Idealize, Devalue and Discard. Eleanor Payson describes this extremely well in The Wizard of Oz and other Narcissists. First, there is the idealization stage in which you can do no wrong. You’re unlike any other man or woman they’ve ever known. You’re better, kinder, smarter, more talented and more loving. Only you can truly understand the narcissist’s pain and see into their misunderstood little black heart. You’re her hero or his angel — not like all those past lovers who were so nasty and abusive to the perennial victim, Ms. or Mr. Narczilla.

- Advertisement -
Dr. Tara J. Palmatierhttp://shrink4men.com/
The first Shrink4Men was published by Dr. Tara J. Palmatier, PsyD on January 12, 2009. Dr. Palmatier began Shrink4Men because she recognized that men who are in abusive relationships in which the perpetrator is a woman do not have the same support resources as their female counterparts. Dr. Tara holds a PsyD in Clinical Psychology and an MSc in Counseling Psychology. She has over 24 years of experience delivering direct services to diverse populations in a variety of settings. Dr. Tara currently publishes the Shrink4Men website, blog, and forum. She specializes in helping men who are trying to end relationships or seeking coping strategies for dealing with their abusive wives, girlfriends or exes, many of whom have been diagnosed with a personality disorder or whom they suspect have personality disorders or traits.
Sponsored

11 COMMENTS

  1. It’s troublesome to me that you lump borderline and npd in together here and essentially equate the two and the behaviors. This leads to further misunderstanding and stigma around bpd that is even more damaging to those suffering it. While bpd is a cluster b disorder, what drives it, the thought processes and triggers are totally opposite from those of a narc or sociopath and their motives are completely misrepresented here and in a lot of current literature about the topic. New studies approached from a more empathetic and understanding point of view would educate you that borderlines are not emotional con artists as you described, as narcs are. They don’t have shallow or no emotions like a narc. They don’t manipulate others for the purpose of getting what they want and then discarding them. They do feel remorse. In fact borderlines experience such deep, intense emotions they have trouble containing them, they’re desperate for love and affection they never received as children and act out in child like ways to achieve it without realizing it, they have severe fear of abandonment and so may never discard even the most toxic relationship let alone one that is providing them love and understanding. They are so remorseful that causing someone else pain can lead them into a spiral of self loathing and even self harm. Their outbursts and rages etc aren’t calculated as a means to an end, they are instant, uncontrollable reactions to triggers that cause them to think irrationally in those moments.
    Please don’t perpetuate the misunderstandings about bpd. One of the hardest things for someone with bpd is always being misunderstood, their intentions twisted, and vilified when all they wanted was love

- Advertisment -

Latest

Wise picks for 'Caption This' image Published on 15 November. Click to read more selected captions submitted by our readers.
Provide a creative, relevant caption for the picture and we will select the best captions to publish it with the image and your name after 49 hours. Wise pick for the image will be published on 21 November #captionthis #caption
Your role in the narcissistic cult can vary based on how your usefulness is perceived by them and how effectively you can meet their needs.
This Shift is affecting our consciousness and every aspect of life: our political, social and economic structures, the environment, institutions, our relationships, every thought we think and every feeling we feel.

Editor's Pick

Don't ignore these symptoms.
The colors you find the most alluring can indicate your most dominant trait. What is your dominant personality trait?
How to distinguish between the “good” and the “bad”? Here is an easy list to help you spot the nice ones from the fake ones
If you’re ready to show to the world the real you, this post might just be the beginning of your journey to authenticity.
- Advertisement -

Popular

Clear your mind, gaze upon the following 6 Sigils and Choose the one that speaks to you most. Read on to find what it means for you
The psychoanalysis test is quick and easy. Its effectiveness is astonishing. All you have to do is read about the first figure that caught your eye. Take a look:
Useful Psychology Tricks that will give you an upper hand when dealing with people

Latest quotes

- Advertisement -