Have you ever stumbled upon a friend who acts in a way that hurts you and your mental health? If yes, you are probably having a friend who is a narcissist. Let’s find out more about how narcissists treat their friends and ruin their lives.
A good friendship is one that is supportive, respects one’s boundaries, and has a good understanding. If we are about to take the wrong path, a friend must care for our lives and advise us not to take that path. Good friends will always strive to grow with their friends in order to develop integrity and an appropriate environment. Contrarily, narcissistic friends would treat their friends in a way that is toxic, abusive, and mentally exhaustive.
Adding friendships in your life should be a confidence booster, stress reliever, help at tough times, and make a healthy lifestyle. However, if your friend has a narcissistic personality disorder or narcissistic traits, the friendship will not be as healthy as you hoped. A narcissistic friend will use various abusive patterns to devalue, control, and gain superiority.
How do Narcissists treat their Friends?
Narcissists appear to be adept at friendships, yet they tend to reflect their malevolent conduct onto their friends. The friend will eventually see that the narcissist is becoming more jealous, denigrating, abusive, and gossiping. Narcissists would treat their friends in such a way that they damage their positive qualities and devastate their mental health.
Narcissists are often envious of their friends’ abilities, personalities, assets, relationships, and accomplishments. They want to be the center of attention in any event, even if their friends are the ones who deserve it. This is why narcissists want to always be superior to their friends.
To be superior, the narcissist either strives to acquire more than what their friends have or tries to exploit the friends to make less than them. In this manner, narcissistic friendship will always stay competitive. The narcissists fantasize that the potential of their friends suppresses their self-loathing mentality and work hard to be more successful to retain their self-esteem.
Narcissists are experts at devaluing their victims but, will the narcissist devalue their friends? Without a doubt, narcissists will try to devalue every person they are close with to not let down their self-esteem behavior. Narcissists are ungrateful and empathyless beings who can intentionally devalue their comrades just to fill up their grandiose sense of entitlement.
A friend who is a narcissist doesn’t care about your success and achievement. Instead, he/she chooses to devalue you to lower your self-worth and pride. “It’s your right to be proud of your hard work and achievement” even though the narcissists don’t like it.
Your narcissist friend may say things like these to devalue you,
“I’m so happy for your success, what a luck”
“My friend is the luckiest one to achieve this”
“If it wasn’t my help that day, you probably wouldn’t have won this”
We know that narcissists don’t take responsibility for their actions and blame shifts on others to hide them. The same happens in a narcissistic friendship. The narcissist will consciously tease or blatantly expose the insecurities and flaws of their friends in the name of sarcasm. If the friend reacts to it, the narcissist will effortlessly gaslight you by shifting the blame saying “you can’t even take a joke” or “you have no sense of humor”.
You can never confront a narcissist for their malicious behavior as they are capable of easily guilt tripping or blame shifting you.
A narcissistic friendship can be as abusive as any narcissistic relationship. Yes, just being a friend of yours, the narcissists are capable of abusing you. A narcissistic friend can hurt you in a variety of ways, including cutting off your Friend Circle, destroying your Relationship, using you as a flying monkey, creating intimacy in a friendship, and trapping you in friends with benefits.
It’s difficult to get away from a narcissist even if they are just a friend of yours.
Threaten or Blackmail
Ever your narcissistic friend blackmailed you to not expose them? A narcissist will always gather information discreetly and take note of all their friends’ vulnerabilities or insecurities. In such a way, they can use them as a threatening weapon to restrict or control your actions.
For example, if you are about to reveal your narcissistic friend’s cheating activities to his or her spouse, who is also a friend, the narcissist will use your vulnerabilities as a trump card to blackmail you and prevent you from protecting the victim. They may say,
“If you say about this to my spouse, I’ll open about your parents’ miserable lives to the public” or “If you want to snitch about me, I’ll leak your wardrobe malfunction pics of you that I took on that day”
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Narcissists never feel guilty or remorse for their actions. Their self-pride will never let them acknowledge the mistake and genuinely ask for an apology. Even if they apologize, they give an apology that is self-centric and gaslighting. For example, “I’m sorry that you feel that way”, “I never meant to hurt you”, etc.
A narcissist’s apology is entirely contrived and will simply be utilized as a hoovering tactic. After apologizing, the narcissist expects the friend to forget the narcissist’s error and accept them immediately. They expect the friend to swiftly break the boundary and accept the narcissist, regardless of how bad the mistake is.
If you refuse to accept your narcissistic friend’s apologies, he or she will depict you as heartless, mean, and rude in front of others while glamorizing their apology.
Remind you of their good deeds
Do you remember when your narcissistic friend pretended to be supportive and understanding? That was most likely the last time your narcissistic friend did something kind for you. At the beginning of a relationship, every narcissist will appear charming and enthusiastic.
The narcissist will constantly list or deceive you into believing that they have done wonderful actions in the past. The friend who is a narcissist expects the victim or pals to be eternally thankful for small or no aid from them.
The narcissist expects constant validation and attention, to do that, they gain control over their friends by reminding them of past deeds.
Has Unreasonable Expectations
Friendship with a narcissist will always be one-sided. The friend who is a narcissist will frantically seek your attention, support, and affirmation while offering nothing in return. According to the narcissist, they believe they are superior to you and that you must validate them at all costs to maintain the friendship.
What if your male friend tries to cheat on his girlfriend? You would confront him and say not to, right? However, if a narcissistic buddy cheats in a relationship, he or she will want you to validate their behavior. They will say (let’s assume a girl who is a narcissistic friend of yours),
“He deserves better, that’s why I cheated on him”
“I was drunk af that I couldn’t resist kissing him”
“If you were in my place, you would also do the same”
“Although I love my current partner, I can’t still get over with my ex”
“My boyfriend lacks the romance that this guy had, I had no other choice”
“You know my boyfriend is not that romantic nor good at sex, right?”
Steals your Friends
Narcissists are envious of their friends’ potential and personalities. They envy your socializing skills to make a good friendship. Since narcissist wants them to be your center of attention, they devise plans to ruin your friendships with others. On narcissists’ point, they can make as many friends as they want, but their closest friend shouldn’t.
To ruin your friendship with others, the narcissistic friend will spread gossip or talk ill about you behind your back and act as if nothing happened. In fact, they might end up stealing your dear friends.
Not just a narcissistic friend, but no one has the right to treat their friends in the manner described above. To deal with a narcissist as a friend, avoid exposing your vulnerabilities, keep your distance, cherish other healthy friendships, and avoid contact if at all feasible. Remember that if you are in a friend zone with a narcissist with whom you want to establish a relationship, now is the time to distance yourself from the narcissist and avoid narcissistic abuse.