Is it possible to spot a Narcissist on the first date?
Dr Lilian Cabiron. Oct 2016
Long ago a dear colleague of mine reminded me of the following: You can always trace back the reason for the end of a relationship to its presence in the first few dates. If the above statement is true how could it be possible to continue dating somebody who showed signs of a narcissist personality disorder on the first date?
Lets have a closer look at the dynamics of the first few dates with a narcissist. If there are warning signs, it can be extremely valuable to recognize them and exit a relationship that would be nothing less than toxic and traumatic for you.
The awareness about the red flags has to go hand by hand with a very generic declination to continue dating the narcissist. The smoother your exit the greater the chances he / she will leave you alone and move onto their next target. However, if you mention your reasons to leave or confront them with their actions it is likely that the narcissist will start a vindication campaign, even if you have been dating for a shot period of time.
During the first to the third date the “toxic” person most likely will let you know they are crazy. He or she will tell you a story of their life that is true, wrapped in a lie, wrapped in truth. For example a prior conflict and how they reacted to said conflict. The empath who hasn’t done deep self work will excuse or justify that craziness considering that this new partner was taken to the extreme for him or her to react that way. Narcissists will test your boundaries, they like to see what type of person you are and what will you put up with.
Here is a clear example:
Albert and Vi went on a date for the first time, they were having a great time, Albert was charming and seamed to be very interested in Vi and she was a professional in the mental health sector. So Albert shares this experience of his therapy “I was in therapy. One day the psychologist’s cell phone rang during the session, I grabbed it and answered. It was her husband, I told him she was busy with me implying we were lovers and passed her the phone saying “Dear, it is for you. Later on she had problems with her husband, because he was jealous, how did she dare to be interrupted by the phone when I was with her!”
Albert was visibly enjoying that memory and fond of it.
In the example Albert was clearly showing lack of empathy, compassion, a hypertrophic sense of entitlement and self-centredness. He was sharing all that in the first date with Vi. He was mentioning all these to his date to see how she reacted, if Vi reacted like it was not a big deal and excused him it could have been a matter of time until Albert started trying with uncaring, disrespectful and selfish acts. He did. Few months after that first date he announced that he would not travel to meet Vi, since they were living in different cities, he had too much work and it was far too important to leave it. However he expected Vi to travel. He was on his own and had just one dog to look after. Meanwhile, Vi was also working full time, holding a lot of responsibilities and she was the only financial support to her little son. While Vi and her son were visiting him the little one fell very sick and ended up in ICU. Vi was unable to speak the local language. Albert accompanied her at the hospital for a while but later on he left because he has to go for coffee at an acquaintance’s home and after that he had to rest because he was “to stressed” with the story of the little one. Vi had no chance to be supported. Immediately the point of the situation was how bad Albert was feeling and nothing about her.
The story continued for another 13 years of mental and emotional abuse and some years of hell dished up by Albert while Vi was trying to divorce him.
Narcissistic and toxic people show who they are at the beginning of a human interaction. There are red flags that are important to read. They tell you they are crazy. If you dismiss that craziness, if you become overly understanding and empathic then you must know that you put yourself in a high-risk situation, opening the door for abuse.
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