21 Major Red Flags of Narcissistic Behavior

Ever felt like something was off while dating someone new? What red flags helped you realize you might be dealing with a narcissist?

1. Love Bombing Early On

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He showered me with compliments and gifts right from the start, making it all seem like a fairy tale. But this intensity felt overwhelming and insincere, tipping me off to his manipulative tactics.

2. Rapid Commitment Push

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Within weeks, he was talking about a future together, pressuring me for an immediate commitment. This rushed intimacy felt forced, signaling his desire to control.

3. Conversational Monopolist

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I noticed that our conversations were always about him. He never really listened or showed genuine interest in my thoughts or feelings.

4. Reacts Poorly to Criticism

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Any critique, no matter how constructive, was met with hostility or extreme defensiveness. He could never handle even the slightest criticism.

5. Gaslighting Tactics

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He often twisted facts and situations to make me doubt my own memory and sanity. Recognizing this tactic helped me see the psychological manipulation at play.

6. Lacks Empathy

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His inability to empathize became apparent when he showed little to no reaction to my emotional needs or struggles. It was all about his feelings, all the time.

7. Expects Constant Praise

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He needed endless admiration and validation. If I didn’t comply, he became cold or passive-aggressive.

8. Obsessed With Perfection

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He projected an image of perfection in all aspects of life and expected the same from me, setting unrealistic standards for our relationship.

9. Past Relationship Patterns

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Listening to him talk about his exes, it was clear he saw himself as the perpetual victim. Everyone else was the problem, according to him.

10. Isolates You From Others

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He subtly tried to sever my ties with close friends and family, framing it as us “against the world.”

11. Financial Domination

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He either bragged about his wealth or, inversely, expected me to pay for everything, using money as a control tactic.

12. Public Persona vs. Private Reality

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In public, he was charming and sociable, but at home, he became a completely different person—moody, withdrawn, or aggressive.

13. Non-apologetic Behavior

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He never genuinely apologized for anything. If he did, it was always “I’m sorry you feel that way,” never acknowledging his own wrongdoings.

14. Uses Love as Leverage

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He used my feelings for him as leverage, threatening to leave or withdraw affection if I didn’t bend to his wishes.

15. Sudden Mood Swings

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His emotional states were unpredictable, ranging from ecstatic highs to terrifying lows, keeping me constantly on edge.

16. Blame Shifting

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Nothing was ever his fault. He always found a way to shift the blame to me or someone else.

17. Manipulates Your Feelings

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He played on my fears and insecurities, manipulating my emotions to keep me under his control.

18. Keeps You on a Short Leash

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He needed to know where I was at all times and frequently checked in under the guise of concern, but it felt more like surveillance.

19. Jealous and Possessive

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His jealousy wasn’t just a sign of insecurity; it was possessive and stifling, aimed at keeping me from interacting with others.

20. Disrespectful of Boundaries

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He consistently ignored or violated my personal boundaries, testing my limits to see how much control he could exert.

21. Unrealistic Expectations

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His expectations were sky-high and non-negotiable, designed to be impossible to meet and leave me perpetually trying to prove my worth.

Afterthoughts on Dodging the Narcissist Bullet

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Recognizing these red flags early saved me from what could have been a psychological nightmare. If you spot these signs, trust your instincts and prioritize your mental health—sometimes the best relationship is the one you walk away from.

The post 21 Red Flags of Narcissistic Behavior: A Personal Guide first appeared on Pulse of Pride.

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