If you feel alone in your relationship, something is not right. In fact, something is very, very wrong because the definition of a relationship is a connection between two people where there is a regular, ongoing exchange of thoughts, feelings and experiences. Not so when you are in a relationship with a narcissist. Dr. Hawkins gives you 3 signs you are with a narcissist. When you’re in a relationship with a narcissist, everything is all about them – their life is all important while your life is at best unimportant , and at worst, non-existent.
3 Signs You Are With a Narcissist: Recognizing Emotional Neglect
Do you ever find yourself feeling utterly alone in your relationship, whether it’s a marriage, a work connection, or any other type of relationship? If you do, you’re not alone. Dr. David Hawkins, the director of the Marriage Recovery Center and the Emotional Abuse Institute, is here to shed light on the three unmistakable signs that you might be dealing with a narcissist or a self-centered, immature individual. It’s time to recognize these signs and explore the steps you can take to address the emotional neglect that often accompanies such relationships.
Sign #1: You Feel Alone
Feeling alone in a relationship is one of the most distressing emotions anyone can experience. Our feelings are a powerful indicator of what’s transpiring in our relationships, and they deserve our attention. If you find yourself consistently feeling alone, whether in your marriage, at work, or within your friendships, it’s a significant red flag.
Dr. Hawkins emphasizes that when people grapple with this feeling in marriage, they often describe it as a sense of invisibility. It’s as though they question their existence in their partner’s world. They feel like they don’t truly exist in their partner’s mind, and their presence isn’t considered part of their daily thoughts and experiences.
Sign #2: Your Life Seems Unimportant to Them
In a healthy, mature relationship, there is a reciprocal sense of importance. Both partners genuinely care about each other and are genuinely interested in each other’s lives. They inquire about each other’s days, taking an active interest in the details, no matter how mundane they may seem.
However, when dealing with a narcissistic individual, your life might seem unimportant to them. They don’t ask about your daily experiences or show curiosity about your thoughts, feelings, or activities. They lack interest in the intricacies of your life. Whether you had a dentist appointment or an important meeting at work, they don’t inquire about the details or express genuine concern.
Sign #3: Their Life Is All-Important
Conversely, narcissistic individuals place an overwhelming emphasis on their own lives. Their concerns and activities take center stage, and it becomes evident that you are on the periphery of their world. They appear busy, juggling numerous personal interests and pursuits, none of which include you. This discrepancy in importance creates a substantial emotional gap between you and them, leaving you feeling isolated and undervalued.
Taking Action: What to Do
Recognizing these signs is an essential first step in addressing the emotional neglect associated with narcissistic relationships. Now, let’s delve into practical steps to deal with these issues:
Self-validation is a critical tool in navigating such relationships. It involves reflecting on your feelings and acknowledging the truth of your situation. It is essential to validate your emotions, understand that they are valid, and not dismiss them as irrational or unimportant.
Share Your Feelings
Communication is key in addressing emotional neglect. When you feel alone, unimportant, or devalued, share your feelings with your partner or the person involved. It’s essential to do this without resorting to criticism. Express your emotions honestly and vulnerably, with the intent to foster understanding rather than blame.
Make Clear Requests
After sharing your feelings, it’s important to communicate your needs and desires. Clearly express what you’re looking for in the relationship. If you want more involvement, empathy, or support, let them know. Making your requests explicit can help the other person understand what you need to feel fulfilled.
Consider an Intervention
In some cases, you may need to consider an intervention. This involves disrupting the status quo of the relationship, even if it means “rocking the boat.” An intervention can be a means of setting boundaries and making your partner aware of the consequences if they continue to neglect your emotional needs.
Interventions can be specific or vague, depending on the situation and the level of urgency. They serve as a way to communicate that change is necessary and that you are willing to take action if your needs are not met.
Being in a relationship with a narcissist or a self-centered individual can be emotionally draining, leaving you feeling alone, unimportant, and undervalued. It’s crucial to recognize these signs and take action to address the emotional neglect you may be experiencing.
Remember the steps to deal with these issues: self-validation, sharing your feelings, making clear requests, and considering an intervention. While you cannot change the other person’s behavior, you can take control of your own emotional well-being and strive for a healthier, more balanced relationship.
If you find yourself struggling in such a relationship, seeking professional help from experts like Dr. David Hawkins and organizations like the Marriage Recovery Center and the Emotional Abuse Institute can be an invaluable resource. Your emotional well-being is too important to neglect, and it’s essential to take steps towards a healthier, more fulfilling relationship.
About Dr. Hawkins:
The internet is inundated with hyperbole and misinformation about narcissism, leaving many people confused and hopeless. Get the facts on narcissism and emotional abuse from someone who has been researching, writing about and treating narcissism and emotional abuse for over a decade.
Dr. Hawkins is a best-selling author and clinical psychologist with over three decades of experience helping people break unhealthy patterns and build healthier relationships.
He is the founder and director of the Marriage Recovery Center and the Emotional Abuse Institute which offers education, training and counseling for people who want to break free of, and heal from, emotional abuse. Whether the perpetrator of the abuse is your spouse, partner, parent, boss, friend or family member, we offer practical advice for anyone trapped in a toxic, destructive relationship.
In addition to narcissism & emotional abuse, you’ll learn about the lesser known forms of abuse, including covert abuse, reactive abuse, spiritual abuse, secondary abuse, relationship trauma and much more.