20 Narcissistic Terms: A Glossary of Terms for Understanding Narcissism

20 Narcissistic Terms

12. Mirroring

A narcissist will mirror what they see in you from your mannerisms to your dress sense, your behaviour and your likes and dislikes. They basically become just like you.

13. Narcissistic Supply

A narcissist is lost without narcissistic supply. They need supply like a plant needs water. Narcissistic Supply consists of attention, admiration, respect, adulation and even fear. Without these vital nutrients of life, the narcissist will become dysfunctional.

14. No Contact

No contact is put in place by a victim in order to give themselves time to recover. It is not in any way similar to the narcissist’s silent treatment. A narcissist who initiates the silent treatment is doing so as a punishment and to exert power and control.

No contact is a self-imposed set of rules whereby there will be absolutely no contact with the toxic person, (No texts, no emails, no phone calls, no snooping on social media). It has been likened to building a wall between you and a toxic individual. You will not care or even be aware of what happens on the other side of this wall. (Minimal contact is advised in circumstances where one has to co-parent with a narcissist).

15. Projection

A narcissist is an expert at projecting their own character flaws or bad behaviour onto others. They will not hold themselves accountable for any wrong-doing and will blame others for the very things that they do themselves. The main objective is to make themselves feel superior.

16. Scapegoat

The scapegoat is blamed for just about everything that goes wrong. A child in a family may be singled out and subjected to unwarranted negative treatment.

17. Trauma Bonding

This term comes from a real-life hostage situation where a number of hostages became emotionally attached to their kidnappers, (The Stockholm Syndrome). Trauma bonding is a misplaced loyalty where a victim is emotionally bonded with their abuser and finds themselves unable to leave an unhealthy or dangerous relationship. The victim remains loyal to someone who has betrayed them time and time again.

Want to know more about trauma bonding? Read We Often Stay In Abusive Relationships Because of Trauma Bonding

18. Self Esteem

Self-esteem is the overall judgement one holds about their own self-worth which would include pride in oneself, self-respect and self-assurance.

19. Triangulation

Narcissists thrive on chaos. They provoke rivalry and jealousy between people, creating triangles in order to boost their own ego.

Looking to know more about how narcissists use triangulation in manipulating people? Read Relationship Stages With A Narcissist Or Borderline And Triangulation

20. Closure

Closure in a normal relationship involves open and honest communication about what has gone wrong, you wish each other well, say goodbye and move on. After a relationship with a narcissist ends a target is left with so many questions and no answers. It feels like the book has been closed before the story has ended. We cannot expect any form of closure from the emotionally immature narcissist who is completely lacking in empathy with no regard for your feelings. The only closure in this type of relationship is the closure you give yourself.


Narcissism is a horrible thing to experience, and it can totally drain your mental and emotional energy. However, knowing these narcissistic terms might help you understand this evil better, and aid you in tackling it. If you want to know more about narcissistic terms, then check out this video below:



Written by Anne McCrea Originally appeared in Narcisist And Emotional Abuse Printed here with prior permission

20 Narcissistic Terms
20 Narcissistic Terms

8 thoughts on “20 Narcissistic Terms: A Glossary of Terms for Understanding Narcissism”

  1. Narcissist are not this way with all of their friends/partners but when they find the perfect victims they are just as you describe.

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