Questions & Answers about Narcissistic Abuse & Recovery... Helping YOU to understand this virulent form of insidious, toxic abuse, and what you can do to protect yourself and start healing. 

What are the hallmarks of Narcissistic Abuse? 11 You Need to Know!

What are the hallmarks of Narcissistic Abuse? 11 You Need to Know!

Narcissists are nothing if not predictable. In the romantic Narcissistic scenario, the 'Trifecta' is typically, 'Love-Bombing', 'Devaluing' and 'Discarding'. Often followed by 'Hoovering', and then the whole cycle starts again. When they get to the devaluing stage, that’s when the ‘nasty’ really begins. The will start by doing any or all of the following – and these are just some examples…

A Narcissist will...

Criticize you – your clothes, the way you walk, talk, eat, think… nothing about you is ok anymore at this stage. They will find fault with everything.


Discredit you – nothing you’ve achieved will be of any value. They will constantly play up their achievements, and play yours down. Nothing you’ve achieved is any value in their eyes, but they will constantly play up their skills and downplay yours.


Belittle you – they’ll make you feel small, inferior and worthless, by ignoring anything you say, rolling their eyes, or butting in with their own glory-story because what you have to say is of no interest to them.


Mock you – they’ll do their best to make you think you are stupid and a waste of space.


Bring up intimate or personal things you’ve shared with them – for example, one client I worked with had shared details with her narc about sexual abuse when she was a child. He threw this into her face several times, saying ‘It’s your own fault. You asked for it! You’ve always been a whore at heart!’…  Nothing is sacred and your secrets are NEVER safe with a narcissist.


Lie to you – about everything and anything. They’ll tell you lies your friends and family have said about you, they lie about where they were, who they were with, what they’ve been doing. Frankly, they can’t tell the truth without lying.


Control you – they will try to isolate you from family, friends, and anyone who is important to you. They’ll try to stop you going anywhere without them or without their permission, they’ll check your phone and your emails. They don’t believe you have a right to any personal space or privacy.


Control the finance – they honestly believe that what’s yours is theirs, and they have no conscience about bleeding you financially dry. They will steal, lie and cheat you out of every cent they can get their hands on, and leave you financially and emotionally broken.


Project on you  – they’ll take all their own nasty characteristics and accuse you of doing/being these things. It would be hilarious if it weren’t so bloody tragic!


Withhold affection / sex – back in the beginning, you felt loved, cherished, sexy, and had amazing sex. Now, there is no physical contact at all and you feel unattractive and rejected. If you try to initiate sex or even a cuddle, they’ll brush you off and tell you you’re  a nymphomaniac.


Cheat on you – in their constant quest for more narcissistic supply, the narc is never satisfied with one relationship. He (or she) is usually a serial cheater, with often several relationships running at the same time. If you catch him out, he’ll blame you. It will be totally your fault and you made him do it.


That’s not the end of the list by any means, there are many many more such as smear campaigns, flying monkeys, triangulation, discarding, hovering, gaslighting, grey rocking, etc, all of which I will be adding under the category 'Hallmarks of Narcissistic Abuse' on this site. The list of of tools in the Narcissist’s arsenal is vast and their sole aim in life is to cause you endless pain and suffering. You’re up against a formidable opponent but there IS a way out. Healing IS possible.


If a Narcissist is ruining your life, you might want to join my closed Facebook Group, Infinite Self-Worth after Narcissistic Abuse, specifically for women who have been dealing with Narcissists:
Guys: I know there are plenty of you suffering too. I'll be starting a new group for Men very soon. 

Maria McMahon


Hallmarks of Narcissistic Abuse