17 Disturbing Reasons Why Narcissists Prey On Anxious People

Photo: getty
17 Disturbing Reasons Why Narcissists Prey On Anxious People
Heartbreak

Narcissism is one of the most sinister personality disorders there is because narcissists thrive on having control over others. Worse yet, they almost always prey on people who struggle with anxiety. 

Find out why people with anxiety often become narcissistic abuse victims.

RELATED: 7 Traits That Make You A Prime Target For A Narcissist

1. A narcissist will make you feel crazy while someone with anxiety already doesn’t trust themselves.

A narcissist is never to blame and someone with anxiety will always be the one to apologize. When a victim takes responsibility for unkind actions of a narcissist it feeds into their ego and how much control they have. Someone with anxiety tends to apologize for things they don’t even need to. Someone with anxiety is a narcissist’s easiest prey.

2. A narcissist doesn’t want to change while someone with anxiety constantly tries to improve.

A narcissist is never wrong. Not only do they think they are incapable of change but they don’t want to change. They want everyone else around them to change so it benefits them.

So when someone with anxiety is trying to improve and get better a narcissist will see that and try and get them to revert back to self-doubt and lack of confidence. Because if someone with anxiety can overcome themselves then they will be able to overcome a narcissist and that’s when they lose their power.

3. A narcissist will pick any fight and someone with anxiety is always anticipating a fight.

You never actually know when a narcissist will lose their shit. And someone with anxiety expects really bad fights that result in name calling and someone leaving. A narcissist will leave which triggers abandonment issues when you have anxiety. You suddenly start clinging to people and fear fights that lead to ends.

4. A narcissist uses fear to control the situation and someone with anxiety is always afraid.

Someone with anxiety constantly walks on eggshells because they never actually know what they are going to walk into and if they will have to go into defense mode. Someone with anxiety is always nervous. The phone rings. They have to answer. If they don’t they’ll get called 12 more times. Then they’ll get threatened. Then they’ll get something taken away. A narcissist will use threats when someone does not act accordingly. So someone with anxiety is constantly on edge with every little thing.

5. A narcissist uses the tactic of manipulation and someone with anxiety folds.

A narcissist wants you to do something and they get you to do it. It’s not even about the task they are asking it’s more because they asked you. Rather than fight, someone with anxiety does what is asked of them and a narcissist checks it off as a win because everything is about keeping score with them.

6. You point out a narcissist flaw and they tell you you’re too sensitive.

A narcissist doesn’t have flaws. It’s everyone else who does.

RELATED: 9 Signs You're A Victim Of Narcissistic Abuse (& Stuck In A Toxic Relationship)

7. A narcissist will deny things that have happened while someone with anxiety will hold on tight to the pain.

You think back to something in the past that might have been traumatizing and they easily forget the moments where they didn’t come out looking good. When someone with anxiety looks back at the past, it’s often accurate because it hurt them so much. But instead of actually healing and moving on, they hear something like, “that never happened.”

8. A narcissist will pick you apart while someone with anxiety already picks themselves apart and is an easy victim.

A narcissist will groom insecurity within its victim to a point where they don’t even have to be the ones tearing them down anymore. They hold you to these unrealistic and unattainable standards that no one can reach. Someone with anxiety tries so hard to be good enough then picks themselves apart and people wonder why don’t they have more confidence. When someone is tearing you down every chance they get and making you feel horrible about who you are because it doesn’t match up to their standard good luck walking away even a little sure of yourself.

9. You blame a narcissist for something and they direct it back to you.

That time they hit you. That time they said something horrible. That time they lost it on you for no reason other than they couldn’t control their emotions, it was your fault because you triggered them to act that way.

They blame you for anything that might go wrong in their life they will never hold themselves accountable.

10. A narcissist will resort to name calling while someone with anxiety will analyze if it’s true what they said.

When they have nothing else to use, unkind words hurt like hell but their acid tongue doesn’t stop until they see they’ve completely broken you.

Someone with anxiety disorder won’t sit there and say ‘I didn’t deserve this.’ They will say ‘what did I do to cause them to lash out at me.’

11. A narcissist will ruin holidays or celebrations looking for any reason to be unhappy, while someone with anxiety thrives on trying to please someone who will never be happy.

Do you ever notice how on most days when everyone else is happy, this person somehow ruins it diverting the attention back to themselves? They want everyone to be focused on them and they will do anything to steal the spotlight. While someone with anxiety disorder is the peacemaker and will do everything in their power to calm the situation even if it means compromising their self-respect.

When you have anxiety and you’ve been affected by a narcissist your needs become second to theirs.

12. A narcissist gets you hooked while someone with anxiety fears abandonment.

A narcissist needs to feel needed. They need to feel like you wouldn’t be able to function without them. So they break you down and be the ones to build you back up. They try and make you believe they are the only one who can love someone like you.

Someone with anxiety clings to a series of these dependent relationships trying so hard to win their love and affection. A narcissist teaches you, love isn’t unconditional but comes and goes when they choose and someone with anxiety then ends up having a lot of abandonment issues because of this.

RELATED: 9 Scary Ways Narcissists Trap You In A Relationship (And How To Protect Yourself)

13. A narcissist will cause drama and spread false rumors while someone with anxiety crumbles at someone talking about them or thinking someone doesn’t like them.

Even if it isn’t true, instead of checking their facts, a narcissist will go after you for it. Instead of hearing your side, if you’ve made them look bad or tarnished their reputation beware.

Narcissists look at every relationship as a reflection of them. So if you aren’t living up to their standard and people are talking about you, they don’t think twice they just believe it because they thrive on negativity and drama.

And when you have anxiety and someone is saying something untrue and mean, you don’t defend yourself, you just deal with the pain someone else has caused knowing you didn’t deserve that.

14. A narcissist will maliciously take you down but manipulate you in such a way you don’t even realize they’ve done it or have triggered you. While someone with anxiety doubts themselves more.

It’s a snide comment that will ruin your day. Something said about the way you look. And when you tell a narcissist, ‘I don’t like that you said that’ or ‘I’d appreciate it if you didn’t say those things in the future,’ instead of having empathy for you, they realize they got to you and they mark it as a win for them. They respond to whatever you might say with, “well it’s true isn’t it?”

Someone with anxiety then starts to believe it.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Join now for YourTango's trending articles, top expert advice and personal horoscopes delivered straight to your inbox each morning.

When a narcissist has insecurities they mask it by making others feel worse than they do.

15. A narcissist will continue to test you and push boundaries while someone with anxiety allows it.

As long as you let them get away with things, they are going to keep pushing you closer and closer to the edge. And the thing about people with anxiety is they have a lot of tolerance and even more resilience when it comes to everything.

You ask someone with anxiety why they are tolerating treatment like they and not putting their foot down and they’ll tell you it isn’t worth it because someone like that really isn’t worth any more of their time and attention. They try so hard to just heal the best they can.

16. A narcissist uses emotional abuse to silence you while someone with anxiety then silences themselves.

Narcissistic abuse is so much messing with your head so there isn’t concrete evidence someone can look back at and say, ‘you’ve done this, here is proof.’

When there is physical abuse, there are marks and bruises and you know it’s not right.

When it’s emotional abuse it’s all about the interruption. While a narcissists motive might have been to take you down verbally, days pass, they forget what happened and they say something like ‘you were being too sensitive.’ Again. reverting to denial of fact vs. fiction.

A narcissist wins when their victim becomes silent about the abuse. And someone with anxiety reverts to silencing themselves in any and all situations because there is blame projected upon themselves that they shouldn’t take ownership of but they do.

17. Everything is about control and this is where a narcissist and someone with anxiety has the greatest conflict.

The greatest issue a narcissist has against someone with anxiety is the battle for control. Someone with anxiety wants to control everything because anxiety is something they can’t control. A narcissist wants to control the individual because their own sense of worth and value is how they influence others and can control them. But someone with anxiety doesn’t want to be controlled.

Eventually, the victim with anxiety learns to pull away and control parts of their own life but there are always things they take with them that was a result of narcissist abuse.

  • How they handle confrontation.
  • How they view themselves.
  • How they talk to themselves.
  • How they choose partners.
  • How they fold when fighting.
  • How they apologize too often.
  • How they are always anxious.
  • How they fear abandonment.
  • How they repress emotions.
  • How they blame themselves for everything.

The relationship between a narcissist and a victim with anxiety may be looked at as cause and effect. But anyone who can overcome both the demons within themselves and a toxic relationship is stronger than any person I know.

RELATED: 12 BIG Signs The Person You Love Is A Narcissist Who's 'Hoovering' You To Death

Kirsten Corley strives to help readers gain an understanding of intense emotions, like heartbreak and getting through it. Follow her on Facebook.

This article was originally published at The Mind's Journal. Reprinted with permission from the author.