It doesn’t always happen quickly. Sometimes narcissists isolate you subtly and slowly, gradually removing your entire identity. However, you can escape.
When we think about narcissists, we think of insidious and toxic people who are easily recognizable. The truth is, they aren’t always so obvious to pinpoint.
Some narcissists pride themselves on just how crafty they can be when isolating you from loved ones. Some of them can slip in undetected and change our lives forever. The good news: we can heal, and we can escape. But first, we must learn the signs.
How narcissists isolate you: 5 signs to watch out for
The narcissist slowly introduces isolation into our lives. It’s not sudden and they usually claim to have your best interests at heart, along with their own. Bit by bit, they convince you to grow more isolated from society.
Here are a few signs that this is happening to you:
1. They pretend to like your friends
One of the subtle indicators that you’re being isolated from people is found in the inconsistent behavior of the narcissist. At first, they will tell you that they like your friends. Gradually, they will find faults in your acquaintances, and this will increase as time goes on.
Eventually, they will say something like this, “I don’t think your best friend, Johanna, is good for you”. Narcissists isolate you with this tactic.
2. They want to keep everything private
Now, this seems sweet at first glance, but it’s a carefully calculated trick. Narcissists will seem like they want to keep family information secret to protect the ones they love, but that’s not the real reason. Here’s the truth.
Only close family knows the true personality and character of the narcissist, and if society saw the truth, it could destroy the narcissist.
If you notice your partner insisting on keeping everything private, it doesn’t mean they’re protecting you. The narcissist could be forcing isolation to protect themself.
3. You’re experiencing self-doubt
Another indicator that a narcissist is isolating you from everyone comes from your level of self-doubt. If you’re questioning who you are or your intentions, these could be thoughts that were planted in your head by your abuser.
This is also a technique used to isolate you from others. It can be a form of gaslighting where the narcissist insists that others do not like you and do not want to be around you. Do you feel this way? If so, someone you love may be attempting to isolate you.
4. They’re using triangulation
It’s vile. Triangulation is when a narcissist will try their hardest to get close to your “favorite” family member. The goal is to become closer to your loved one than you are. Sometimes this happens, and it is so sad.
Do you feel like someone is stealing your brother, your sister, or maybe your own mother? If so, this could be a sign that the narcissist is attempting to isolate you and become more relevant in the lives of your family.
5. They seek all the attention
If someone in your life is always needing attention, their goal may be to isolate you from everyone else. Think about it for a moment. If you are always busy placating a narcissist, you will have no time for anyone else.
This places the narcissist as number one in your life, with the personal goal of being the only one in your life. Watch out for super needy people, and make sure you keep in contact with others to prevent isolation.
How can you escape isolation tactics?
There are several ways to break free from a narcissist’s isolation tactics. More so, there are ways to never end up in that place, to begin with. Take a look at a few tips and tricks to stop these toxic characters in their tracks.
Recognize the signs
First of all, you must be able to recognize when someone is attempting to isolate you from others. Seeing the truth will give you a chance to stop these actions before they start. For instance, here are a few steps.
- Don’t change all your plans for them. Notice the pattern of interrupting your plans and practice doing what you want, anyway.
- Be okay with saying no to the narcissist. They will not like this, but if you do it early on, they will understand that this particular form of manipulation does not work with you.
- Call them out on their behavior. Look directly in their eyes, if they can keep eye contact, that is, and tell them that you know what they are doing. Even if they deny it, just walk away. They know you know, make no mistake of that.
Analyze the relationship
Do you want to stay in a relationship with someone who always attempts to isolate you? Think long and hard about this and understand that narcissists aren’t always willing to change things.
As a matter of fact, most of the time, they deny their actions and intentions. If they bring more harm than good, maybe you should consider a life without them.
Protect your self-worth
Do not let them drag you down. This is a tactic that can successfully isolate you from your loved ones.
You see, narcissists know that if they can make you feel bad about yourself, then you will turn to them, the “only one who appreciates you”. This is a lie, obviously, but manipulation can be powerful if someone has used it for many years.
Do what you need to do
Bottom line: You do whatever you need to avoid isolation and any other harmful weapon a narcissist uses. And remember, a narcissist suffers from narcissistic personality disorder, which is a hard condition to navigate.
Narcissist actually have a low self-esteem and try to offset this by feigning grandiose behavior. Analyzing this behavior is complicated.
These behaviors are not easy to change, so they can affect your health. Your mental and physical health are more important than retaining an unhealthy relationship.
So, scan through these signs and see if any pertain to your situation. If so, take action now and change your life.
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