People with narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) are driven by unexamined and unhealed shame. If you have a narcissistic person in your life, they will avoid feeling shame by not taking responsibility for their behaviour. And, typically they will blame you for their problems instead. If you struggle with depression this could be a major contributing factor.
Check out the personality traits below to see if you are vulnerable to narcissistic abuse.
You Are Overly Generous: Narcissistic people take and give very little in return. If you are an overly generous person and do not insist on receiving in a reciprocal way, you might be susceptible to overgiving until you feel demoralized, depleted or even ill.
You Are Overly Trusting: If you idealistically see the good in everyone and think that all people are honest and decent because you are, you will doubt your uneasy feelings. Assessing people’s character before letting them into your life is very important. Trust without proper discernment about what feels right and wrong, true and false about people can make you a target for narcissistic abuse.
You Are Overly Responsible: It is important to never take responsibility for people who refuse to take responsibility for themselves. The 50/50 sharing of responsibility is the marker of a healthy relationship. If you are willing to do all the heavy lifting in your relationships, you will be susceptible to having relationships with people who are unaccountable for their behaviours, and leave everything that is mundane and difficult for you to do.
You Have Unhealed Emotional Wounds: A relationship with a narcissistic person can begin with the hope that this person will save you from attending to your unhealed emotional wounds. Yet, no one can rescue you. Narcissistic people will find your weak spots and will eventually attack you where you feel most vulnerable.
You Have Weak Boundaries: Narcissistic people aim to guilt you out of your boundaries. If you feel criticized, ridiculed, rejected, abandoned or even punished for setting healthy boundaries, it is important to consider if it is time to end the relationship.
You Are Needy of Love: If you are not loving yourself, you will end up looking for love in "all the wrong places." If you are not tending to your inner child, she will outsource and seek love and attention from similar kinds of people who hurt you in the first place. Loving yourself in the places that feel hurt and abandoned is the key to attracting and maintaining healthy relationships.
You Are Needy of Approval: Narcissistic people will always accuse you of being a bad person in some way. If you do not have a solid sense of self-esteem, you will waste your time trying to prove to the person that is criticizing you that you are not a bad person. It is important to know and affirm your goodness to yourself, and only connect with people who appreciate the good person that you are.
You Need to Change Others: When you do not have enough self-love, you might try to fix other people with the hope that they will love you more. However, sorting out your inner life and pursuing your own life purpose needs to be primary. It is not your responsibility to change anyone. The medicine of true change is always to turn within to heal yourself.