Psychological insights on relationships: rejections, breakups, making relationships happy, unhealthy dynamics, and general psychology.

Red flags in relationships | Do toxic relationships get better?

31 toxic behaviors and red flags in relationships explained. How should you behave if you find yourself in this kind of partnership dynamic.

Group of people

This article is for those who want to improve their relationship. Those who just want to hear that they are right and the other side is wrong will be disappointed. But there, I am ready to risk fewer reads and not cater to anyone to save some of your relationships.

Notes: This article must be taken only as informative. Only a psychotherapist can assess your relationship, dynamics, and what is happening behind the scenes. Only a professional (psychiatrist or psychotherapist) can evaluate what a person is doing and its roots.

31 toxic behaviors and red flags in relationships:

1. Gaslighting

  • There are three roots to gaslighting:
  1. The person genuinely believes in their truth (psychotic person); this reminds on gaslighting and is important to mention. (“We can’t see each other because I feel and know that you hurt me and you don’t love me.”).
  2. An attempt at manipulation and dominance.
  3. Lack of compassion and interest in you.
  • With the first group (psychotic persons), changes are unlikely because they are in their truth and cannot be persuaded otherwise (if someone has slipped into psychosis, a clinical approach may be needed).
  • The second group goal is to make you feel crazy because it provides them satisfaction. This type is satisfied when a person in front of them feels defeated and powerless.
  • Third group: They just aren’t interested in you, but maybe they have something to gain from you, so they stay around.
  • If gaslighting is typical in your relationship, I recommend distancing yourself from that bad relationship. Gaslighting involves elements of empathy deficiency and manipulation. Manipulation is prone to narcissistic personalities. The recommendation is to leave such an unhealthy relationship because it will permanently change you for the worse.
Rejected man

2. Silent treatments

  • It is one of the most challenging forms of emotional and psychological abuse.
  • The message being sent to the person is that they are so worthless that they are practically non-existent and invisible. Considering that we depend on the presence of others (since we were babies, we relied on it. Throughout the difficult history of humanity, what mattered was whether someone would help us), Silent treatment subconsciously evokes in a person the emotions of being in a life-threatening situation.
  • However, it might be a pattern that neurotics picked up in early life. Fearing confrontation, the person punishes the other in the least aggressive but effective way.
  • If you have someone who applies this mechanism, I recommend two things:

1. Check if that person can stop using this mechanism (the mechanism may be copied from the primary family): That’s how mom solved things. She was silent for weeks. In that case, the recommendation is to practice new patterns.

2. Distance yourself from the toxic relationship if you recognize psychopathic traits in the person (lack of emotions).

Note: As long as you are emotional, you cannot objectively see who you have in front of you. Whether the person has a personality disorder or a copied pattern, it is best to leave that conclusion to a professional.

A beautiful woman

3. Failure to fulfill promises

  • You must consider that the person promised something they never intended to fulfill. Perhaps you forced them, or maybe they are incapable of giving you what they promised.
  • We think that all people are capable, for example, of stopping lying. They are not. If it is a deeply ingrained habit that originated from being forced to lie since childhood, because if they didn’t lie, the consequences would be fatal (broken glass = punishment. Broken glass = grumbling all day), the person has the trauma of not lying. This is just an example that applies to anything someone might be doing.
  • The second option is laziness and all the background characteristics: selfishness, egocentrism, and lack of energy.
  • They differ because the person in the first group is genuinely unhappy and regrets such behavior. It is also evident that they suffer from being “stuck in their habit cage.”. They behave like someone who doesn’t know what to do since they choose between trauma and the right thing.
  • The second group of people wants you to stop bothering them, but there is no emotional response (excluding anger when you exaggerate).
  • The recommendation is to seek psychotherapy. Only those from the first group will agree to seek help.
Handsome man standing

4. Constant arguments and discussions

  • It’s obvious that both of you need to gain basic communication skills.
  • The reasons why people are constantly arguing can only be known clearly once they sit in front of a relationship counselor. Still, the fact remains that both sides need to learn how to communicate.
  • Assuming the other side is at fault and constantly provoking the arguments, the task of the first person is to change their tactics and try to understand why it’s happening. What is the underlying issue? Does the person want to say something but struggle to communicate? Is the person argumentative by nature? Do they want to hurt you, or do they feel that some injustice (emotional, psychological, physical, material, etc.) is being done to them?
  • Or maybe you have to understand yourself because you are doing that.
  • I recommend changing tactics for a few months (specifically, just listening to the other person and addressing what they want to say and why they are doing that through arguments). A person can change because you listen to and understand them.
  • If things start to change in those few months, it’s a good sign.
  • If they don’t change despite your patience and suggestions, you probably have a conflict-prone personality in front of you. Life with conflict-prone personalities is full of conflicts and will remain so until the person changes it.
Angry woman

5. Controlling

  • Three typical factors could be behind it: insecurity, a form of emotional-psychological sadism, and a personality trait.
  • Narcissistic personalities also try to control their partner, but they don’t do it openly; they let their partner decide what’s best for them (usually based on constant pressure and reassurance of the narcissist’s truth). Don’t forget, narcissists will never allow the finger to be pointed at them. Everything must be your fault.
  1. If it’s insecurity, the person needs help with reassurance, conversations, and gradual exposure to what they fear. The emotional reaction can be a sign of insecurity. The person acts as if they are hurt and genuinely believes that your behavior is hurting them.
  2. If you suspect sadism, distance yourself from that relationship. Sadism is accompanied by a lack of empathy and compassion. It can be recognized by the fact that the person does not negotiate.
  3. If it’s a personality trait (control is learned in the family and taken for granted, possibly cultural), you can talk to the person and, over time, convince them of the benefits of your way. In sporadic cases, a person changes by more than 50%. Changes are often 10-15%, but that may be enough for a functional relationship. A personality trait can sometimes be recognized by the person’s attempts to explain their reasons for trying to gain control.
Beautiful black woman

6. Manipulation

  • If you recognize manipulation, it’s likely a narcissistic person, and in that case, there’s no help.
  • The recommendation is to distance yourself from such unhealthy relationships. Manipulation is most commonly a characteristic of narcissistic personalities.
  • Lying and distorting the truth, as well as gaslighting, fall into manipulation.
  • If you recognize the helplessness behind it (which requires you to stop thinking about yourself and start thinking about the other person, observe them, try to understand their perspective, and try to put yourself in their shoes), know that you are not being manipulated. A person deals with themselves and tries to achieve something.

7. Poor communication

  • A characteristic of neurotics most often.
  • It’s possible that social skills were not developed in childhood or were sabotaged. The background could be fears of judgment, fear of making mistakes, lack of critical thinking, etc. This is overcome by developing social skills.
  • In unmastered communication skills, the person either imitates a model learned in childhood (silence, distorting the truth, pretending not to understand the partner, etc.) or tries to learn different communication models along the way.
  • You can teach communication techniques and show them how you want them to talk to you.
  • This is done patiently, trying different techniques until you find one that suits both parties.

8. Isolation

  • People with narcissistic personalities are prone to this behavior. They isolate people to have complete control over them. The person (partner, family member, friend, etc.) is left alone without someone to turn to, making the partner the only place they can go.
  • There are other reasons why this is done, but they are rarer.
  • If someone isolates you, understand that there may be an attempt to establish complete control over you.
  • Be particularly cautious with covert narcissists who isolate you from other people with their behavior. (“I’m afraid to be alone. Don’t go to your friends.” “Your parents don’t like me. I’m so sad.”). To protect that person, you will start doing things in their favor and give up important people in your life.
Black-man

9. Disrespect

  • Probably learned in childhood from some role model.
  • Less often, the person aggressively defends against your behavior.
  • Whether disrespect occurs spontaneously or only during a disagreement can help to distinguish it.
  • It can also be differentiated based on what needs to be respected. If decent things are not respected or are mocked, and it happens even when there is no ongoing argument, you are dealing with a very unpleasant character. If disrespect appears more like a burst occurring during an argument, resembling an attempt to hurt and offend, then it might come from helplessness.
  • If decent things are not respected or are mocked, and it happens even when there is no ongoing argument, you are dealing with a very unpleasant character. I use the term unpleasant character because it can contain many different characteristics that come from different sources.

10. Violence

  • The absolute recommendation is to leave that unhealthy relationship, whether the person is violent or if you provoke violence against yourself.
  • I know I just said something shocking, but sometimes people have the urge to experience some form of violence. This need is subconscious and can come from various sources, but the underlying source is the need for aggression towards oneself and self-punishment.
  • In any case, whatever the background is, leaving that bad relationship is the only solution because the cycle of violence or provocation of violence will continue.
  • The only way to change something is to seek the help of a psychotherapist, which cannot be done while you are exposed to violence (whether you provoke it or allow it because the person is violent).
  • In this case, it is necessary to live without violence for some time for it to become your new regular, and then work on eradicating that need. While exposed to violence, it is your normal way of living, and you participate in that dynamic.
  • So, remove yourself, get used to a life without violence, and talk to a therapist about your changes and progress.
A group of people are standing

11. Jealousy

  • The root is, of course, in insecurity. The question is whether the person is inherently insecure or if you’re adding fuel to the fire of their insecurity.
  • Important note: Jealousy can be dangerous because people who are extremely insecure fear losing the object of their love and are willing to do anything to protect themselves from that emotional pain.
  • Jealousy can also come from dangerous psychological disorders.
  • Convert jealousy into optimism. If a person gains confidence and is sure of their partner’s love, jealousy will decrease or disappear.
  • If jealousy bothers you, first check if you contribute to its dispersion. Many times, I’ve spoken with people who endure jealousy but, on some level, enjoy it because:
  1. confirms their partner’s love,
  2. makes their partner more insecure, giving them an advantage,
  3. reciprocates for perceived slights,
  4. entertains them, etc.
  • If you are provoking jealousy, conversations with a professional are necessary. How and where did you adopt this mechanism? What do you gain from such dynamics?
  • If a partner is unjustifiably jealous, the relationship probably needs to end because it involves profoundly ingrained insecurity.
  • Such insecurity is treated in psychotherapy, and there’s a very slim chance that a partner can cure it.
  • Dealing with such a person guarantees challenging times, a life full of guilt and justification, and ultimately, a very challenging psychological and emotional state.
Man and woman break up

12. Ignoring boundaries

  • If the person reads your messages, enters the bathroom when unwelcome, or disregards your wishes, you’re dealing with an immature, spoiled individual whose boundaries weren’t set in childhood.
  • Usually, there’s no malice behind this. Through conversations, a person can be educated (like a spoiled child), and the relationship can become functional.
  • If a person aggressively and openly disrespects your clearly communicated boundaries, it might be an aggressive character. In that case, you need to remove yourself from the relationship because the person speaks the language of aggression. They have a need for dominance, and that need is ingrained in their character.
  • When someone uses this “language,” it’s very challenging to change, and that’s only if the person doesn’t enjoy their superiority over you and others.

13. Ignoring your needs

  • It’s likely a narcissistic or spoiled personality. Both categories are unchangeable because they want to keep a pattern that brings them such good benefits, always fulfilling their needs.
  • The third option is a selfish personality. Selfish people aren’t necessarily bad; they do what they want. They may seem bad because you interact with them, but then you have to choose. Changes are also in the range of 10-15% because selfishness always serves them well.
  • You can fulfill those needs yourself or find another partner who pays attention to your needs.
  • Of course, first, check if your needs are realistic (e.g., if you need to travel to the Maldives but the person doesn’t want to fulfill it… then you might be spoiled).
  • Suppose your needs are realistic and your partner refuses to fulfill them. In that case, you’re dealing with one of these three categories, and life with them will certainly remain the same because they have no good reason to change something that brings them so many advantages.

Neglected needs

  • Lack of empathy, selfishness, and egotism are narcissistic traits.
  • Lack of awareness of consequences, lack of time or resources, lack of communication, lack of social skills, and neuroses.
A woman wants to rid herself of toxicity in a relationship

14. Drama

  • Probably a very immature person with a narcissistic personality.
  • They are not called “drama queens” by chance because this behavior puts them in the spotlight, and their whims are fulfilled. Just like in childhood.
  • They enjoy their voice, thoughts, and roles. They feel like the main characters in a play.
  • They may also enjoy the dopamine rush obtained after tormenting the other party until they leave. Anticipation and a dopamine boost might be what they seek. But they enjoy the role and that theater.
  • The other option is massive neuroses (irrational fears), where ugly scenarios seem likely and are sure to happen. Long-term psychotherapy is needed for the person to be convinced that their fears are irrational.

15. Physical violence

  • Aggression, lack of empathy, sadism, lack of self-control, complete absence of self-control. Or all together.
  • It is necessary to leave that toxic relationship.
  • It is also essential to question how you ended up in that relationship. There’s a hypothesis that we know who people are very quickly in the first half-hour (but certainly in two weeks). Regardless of how fast you realize that the person is violent, it’s a good question to ask: why did you expose yourself to them and stay with them?
  • If you have ever stayed in a physically violent relationship, I highly recommend psychotherapy.
  • Masochistic tendencies can be recognized here.
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16. The person thinks only of themselves

  • Narcissistic personality (not referring to narcissistic disorder, which is the most severe form of narcissistic tendencies). They are generally unchangeable because thinking only of themselves works well for them in life. Selfish people don’t see any advantage in changing. Please don’t delude yourself into thinking they’ll suddenly notice you.
  • They are not necessarily evil, but people around them always feel like they are in second place, which changes a person over the long term, making them feel inferior and less valuable.
  • Theoretically, you can live with them, each leading your own life and taking as much as you can for yourself. The problem is that you might become such a person—thinking only of yourself and treating people outside that relationship the same way.
  • The second option is to consciously accept being the one who sacrifices to get what you need from the other person to be with them. In this relationship, you can only persist if the sacrifice is conscious and intentional, and you give up changing such a person.
  • The third option is a breakup.
Handsome man

17. Feeling Disrespected

  • Hmm, that is a tricky one. Because if you’re at a point where you’re seeking respect, you’re not actually in a bad emotional-psychological place. You’re not a broken person satisfied with minimal love and content with having peace and, let’s say, “basic things.” Let’s separate the levels: basic level (peace), middle level (respect), and advanced (progress).
  • The middle level we’re discussing (seeking respect) involves being heard and considering your thoughts, emotions, and suggestions. So, you demand this. Seeking respect means you’re not afraid and recognize that you deserve more. You have self-confidence and a positive self-image. Congratulations.
  • If you’re asking for something below that level (you’re upset, and someone ignores you), it’s not about respect; it’s a lower level. Your basic needs aren’t met. It’s a struggle for basic human needs: peace, recognition, and acceptance.
  • So, if you’re at a point where you demand respect, that’s good. You’re holding up well, and you can get what you want through quality conversations.
  • It’s also recommended to consult a couples’ counselor.

18. Blaming You for Everything

  • It is a tremendously bad place to be because it pushes you into an eternal inferior role. Life is spent justifying, redeeming, and trying to avoid feeling blamed. However, if you’re dealing with someone who inherently blames others, you’ll never escape blame. Mainly because it might be projection (“I didn’t do that, you did”), rationalization (“It had to happen”), or denial (“No, that’s not true. It didn’t happen. You’re imagining it”), etc.
  • All energy goes into rectifying blame and thinking about it, even when there’s no real reason for blame. Hypothetically, if you do something, you’re guilty; if you don’t do something, you’re still guilty.
  • This behavior will permanently change you, and after a few years of practicing it, you’ll internalize being automatically guilty, even when no one projects guilt onto you. Moreover, when we act guilty in front of people, there’s a countertransference, and people accept that game, unintentionally emitting guilt towards us or avoiding us because it’s tiresome.
  • If you have a partner who projects guilt onto you, I strongly recommend distancing yourself, not because they’re evil but because they will change you. I’ve sat with too many people who carry an enormous sense of guilt, which isn’t rational.
Toxic couple

19. Toxic Communication

  • Insulting, humiliating, belittling, mocking, etc.
  • These are people with heightened aggression and, maybe, sadistic tendencies.
  • It could be a narcissistic personality.
  • Sometimes, it’s someone so bad with themselves (neurotic) that they choose to attack and torment to gain some advantage. This is rarer.
  • All three groups communicate in an ugly manner, insulting, hurting, demeaning, and humiliating. They differ only in whether you notice the absence of emotions and coldness in their behavior, even enjoyment (aggressive, narcissistic, or sadistic personality), or whether you notice emotion and the person struggling in pain (neurotic personality).
  • In the first two variants (aggressive, sadist, and narcissistic personalities), you need to leave that unhealthy relationship.
  • In the third variant, the person needs long-term psychotherapy to give up this pattern and adopt a different behavior pattern when they are in pain and hurt. Such psychotherapies take a long time.

Constant criticism

  • A pattern likely learned in childhood from some figures.
  • It can also come from neurosis and dissatisfaction. It is possible that the person does not know how to communicate their fears and dissatisfaction.
  • It’s possible to unlearn it and adopt new ways of communicating.
Man and woman in toxic relationship breaking up

20. Competition

  • A better option is for the person to have catastrophic social skills. They always want to win, and it amuses them. They don’t concern themselves much with how others feel around them (it can be tiring because people don’t always want to compete). As you can see, the underlying reason isn’t malice. Usually, these people have a lot of energy.
  • A worse option is a more aggressive person or a narcissistic personality.
  • However, I’m not referring to people who destroy others (which these two types of personalities are prone to). I’m referring to people who enjoy competing, which amuses them. In this case, you can give them the illusion of competition without taking it personally. It means something to them, but maybe not to you. If you change your way of thinking, you can easily give it to them.
  • The problem is that no one likes to be constantly defeated (but some people can handle it.).
  • If you have a person who wants to defeat you, remove yourself from that bad relationship. Because it’s not a competition; it’s a need to destroy you. The background could be psychopathic.
  • Competition and destruction can seem similar, but they are not. They come from different sources and partner needs. One is almost funny, and the other is dangerous.
Woman in toxic relationship

21. Walking on Eggshells

  • If you find yourself in such a unhealthy relationship, it means this dynamic is acceptable to you, and you’ve practiced this behavior before, probably in your parental or caretaking home.
  • Unfortunately, it speaks to you that this dynamic is the only acceptable one. You recognize walking on eggshells around someone as the first form of love. That is, personalities that demand this from you are recognized as someone offering love. Someone in your family was probably like that.
  • You may be a logical match for such a person. It’s normal for you to walk on eggshells (I’m not saying it’s pleasant; it’s incredibly uncomfortable, but you can do it). And the other person finds it normal to demand this from you—a logical pair.
  • It requires self-exploration: how did you end up in a relationship where walking on eggshells is part of the dynamic?
  • Potentially fixable if both parties come closer by 10-15%. One side starts demanding and resenting less, and the other stops behaving defensively.
  • Another and smarter option is obviously psychotherapy for both. The person who undergoes psychotherapy usually rejects this other person because they are no longer a logical match.

22. Desire to Make Partner Feel Guilty

  • Sadistic tendencies. Possible psychopathy. Characteristic need for torment. The need to defeat, humiliate, and maybe fundamentally destroy another being.
  • Less frequently, it comes from personal injury and a need for the partner to feel the same as us (guilty).
  • If this is the source, it’s usually done through despair and tears and quickly ends because the person cannot maintain it.
  • If there’s no despair behind it and guilt is part of your life next to that partner, it’s a very dangerous place to be.
  • Read also the paragraph: Blaming You for Everything (which distinguishes between “pouring” guilt and the desire to make the person feel guilty, which is a psychopathic desire).
Man and woman are fighting

23. Dishonesty

  • From “best” to worst:
  1. Fear and habit of avoiding the truth
  2. “White lies aren’t a big deal. If I say them, I’ll avoid unnecessary trouble.”
  3. Opportunism
  4. Disturbed personality.
  • None of these reasons justifies the person or is suitable for coexistence. Some of them have very ugly motives, while others have less ugly ones.
  • Disturbed personalities, while not necessarily malicious, always lack a sense of others and empathy. They are unaware of the consequences of their actions and only try to overcome them when they are involved.
  • Living with them can lead to troubles (financial, for example), but also to permanent damage to your personality because you spend your life trying to convince the person of the truth. And always fail. Remember that dishonesty is their principle.
  • Trying to convince them depletes all your energy. Energy goes into persuasion, and ultimately, everything seems pointless. You remain exhausted, confused, and disappointed on a deeper level. You may intentionally change yourself to cope with this profile of people.
Black couple fighting

24. Financial restrictions

  • There are two roots: narcissistic and neurotic.
  • The first implies that a person wants to control another person, so finances are a form of control. If you feel threatened because you have no means, it is possible that you are under the control of a narcissist.
  • If it is of a neurotic nature, financial control comes from fears.
  • The person is probably in childhood or scared of financial well-being or poverty.
  • It is also possible that their strength lies in financial resources, and that is why it is difficult for them to give them up, and you help them to acquire as many of them as possible.
  • This is a very difficult type of person to change (narcissistic is not at all).

25. Resentment

  • As a result of mutual dynamics, resentment often stems from a pattern of mutual hurt and conflict.
  • The person harbors resistance towards the other due to a history of mutual pain and discord.
  • In order to fix this dynamic, the person should “make amends” for what the partner is experiencing. It must be clearly communicated that it is redemption.
  • Also, from that moment on, they should start practicing a new joint dynamic.
  • A person who feels resistance towards another person needs to learn to communicate more directly and openly, because one partner is often not aware that he is hurting the other person.
  • Sometimes resentment toward a partner comes from selfish motives. For example, one person fell in love with someone else and unconsciously developed resentment toward the characteristics of the current partner in order to leave him more easily.
Man and woman breaking up

26. They strip away your self-esteem

  • It usually stems from attempts at control over a person or a situation.
  • Control is a trait of narcissistic personalities (although it shouldn’t be confused with narcissistic personality disorder).
  • People who undermine others’ self-confidence do so in various ways:
  1. By criticizing (either directly or subtly targeting the weaknesses or faults of the other person),
  2. By comparing (highlighting deficiencies or weaknesses in comparison to others),
  3. By humiliating (mocking or ridiculing their appearance, abilities, or achievements),
  4. By withholding information (to weaken the person),
  5. And by ignoring or neglecting (sending a message to the person that their needs are irrelevant).
  • If you recognize that someone is intentionally destroying your self-esteem in these ways, it means that they want to change you as a person and damage you on a very deep level.
  • If you think he does it unintentionally – that is no excuse for him.
  • Destroying another person is a matter of choice. Anyone can decide to start doing it for whatever reasons are behind it.

27. Hoping for change

  • There are two main scenarios: in one, someone merely hopes for change without actively pursuing it, while in the other, someone desires a different partner altogether.
  • In the former situation, it becomes imperative to initiate tangible steps towards change.
  • Maybe you or your partner are a passive person, or something worries and scares you, so you don’t dare to change.
  • Conversely, in the latter scenario, one can opt to either exit the bad relationship if it no longer aligns with their needs or seek inner peace within the existing relationship.
  • If it is the latter situation, perhaps there is opportunism in the background, waiting for a better opportunity while the partner is being used.
  • However, the most detrimental option entails remaining entangled in a unhealthy relationship that stifles personal growth and perpetuates dissatisfaction for both parties involved.
Man-and-woman-break-up

28. Lack of support

  • Motives for withholding support can vary, ranging from neurotic reasons to narcissistic ones, at the root of both lies neurosis.
  • Envy is a common reason why people may not support you. They may withhold their support if they don’t have other means to sabotage you.
  • Individuals with low self-esteem may feel threatened when others succeed or progress. Consequently, they may attempt to diminish or discourage others from feeling better in comparison.
    Insecure individuals lack the energy and support for others because their own insecurities consume all their energy. They are usually self-centered and may undermine others’ confidence to ensure the focus remains on them.
  • Rationalization serves individuals to justify their lack of support. Phrases like “It’s not the right time for you to do this” or “That’s not a good project” stem from neuroses and narcissism.
  • Control: Again, it comes from two sources—fears of abandonment and narcissistic motives—where the individual fears losing control over the person. The person lacking support is under the control of the narcissist.
  • Control is a typical tool that narcissists use in their interactions.
Black woman

29. Shaming

  • Shaming is a manipulative strategy that narcissistic personalities frequently use to assert dominance, control, and superiority over others.
  • Narcissists often use subtle, covert methods (passive-aggressive remarks, sarcasm, or veiled insults disguised as concern or constructive criticism, etc.) to shame their targets, making it difficult for the victim to recognize and confront the abuse.
  • Narcissists seek to assert control and manipulate them into compliance.
  • Narcissists often target sensitive areas or vulnerabilities in their victims. They may focus on aspects such as appearance, intelligence, achievements, or personal relationships, using these as leverage to assert superiority and diminish their victim’s self-worth.
  • Over time, renewed exposure to narcissistic shaming can have profound effects on a person’s mental and emotional state. The person begins to doubt himself, feels unworthy, and feels inadequate, which feeds the narcissist’s cycle and causes the person’s complete psychological and emotional destruction.
Black couple breaking up

30. Feeling inferior

  • The problem with feelings of inferiority is that they are usually a shared dynamic.
  • One partner must feel dominant and more powerful in order for the other to feel inferior.
  • A partner who behaves more powerfully probably has tendencies in your character. They can come from narcissistic behavior, but also from a feeling of powerlessness and fear of being seen through.
  • A person who feels inferior is probably looking for and expecting this dynamic due to previously seen dynamics in the family. It is possible that one parent was inferior to the other, so the person copied that behavior.
  • This dynamic can be unlearned with great effort (if a narcissistic person is not involved), and healthier behavior can be learned.

31. You feel attacked

  • The difference is between feeling attacked and being attacked.
  • There are three roots to this feeling:
  • You have that feeling, but in reality, the attack is not happening. If that is the case, you may need to see a psychotherapist because that problem comes from something deeper within you.
  • The attack may stem from the partner’s powerlessness and the lack of support due to inferiority issues. It can also arise from increased neuroses, which lead the partner to attack. This behavior may be learned. Also, the person may no longer have the capacity to endure something that they interpret as injustice or aggression against themselves.
  • If the attack comes from a narcissistic person, then it is an attempt to control you and keep you in an inferior position. It is also about showing power and dominance over you. People like this are unchangeable, and your mutual dynamic will not change either.
Handsome man

In this blog post, I provide you with some general recommendations and clarifications.

Each of these profiles requires analysis by a professional to see where certain behaviors come from, as the same behavior can stem from different sources. Someone might lie to save themselves, while someone else lies to gain something from you. None of these behaviors are justified or desirable and must be worked on, either with your help or individually.

In each case, it’s also necessary to question yourself: How did you end up with such a personality? Unfortunately, some of these behaviors are unchangeable.

Dee

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