Narcissists are skilled at making you question yourself.
Like normal people, they don’t have to sit and ponder what their next controlling move will be.
It is in their nature to be manipulative and they are good at it!
They don’t feel remorseful for deceiving, misleading, and lying to you.
When they are caught, they are experts at turning the situation around on the person confronting them.
Their weapons of choice: confusing and belittling their victims.
Below are 11 things that narcissists say to manipulate you.
1.) “I’m just kidding!”
This phrase often follows a very mean and belittling comment.
They want to make their malicious comments sound like “little jokes”, so that they can always appear innocent.
“You’re horrible and should be ashamed of yourself! Just kidding.”
“They will never love you like they love me. Just kidding.”
“You are a horrible mother! Just kidding.”
“You are an awful cook – nothing like me! Just kidding.”
Following these comments, they may look at you to see how you respond.
They want you to feel belittled because they know that as long as you remain quiet, they hold the control.
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2.) “You are so overly-sensitive!”
If you confront a narcissist on their rude and belittling comments, they will immediately tell you that you are way too sensitive!
“You obviously can’t take a joke!”
This tactic turns the situation around on you and makes you look like the person with the problem.
Their goal: to silence you.
If they succeed, they have planted a seed of doubt in your mind that maybe you did over-react.
Don’t let that happen! You don’t deserve to be spoken down to like a child.
Call them out firmly and assertively. Let them know that you will not tolerate that type of behavior.
Related Article: 10 Things You Should Never Say To Your Significant Other
3.) “I never said that.”
If you are in a discussion with a narcissist and remind them of something that they said, you may find them completely denying that they ever said it!
They have no problem completely denying what you know to be true.
The problem with this is that most normal people tend to question themselves!
“Wait, am I wrong? Maybe they didn’t say that.”
However, it won’t take very long for you to realize that this tactic is regularly used by the narcissist.
You might even feel like you need to record all your conversations, so you can prove to them that they are bold-faced liars.
However, their behavior is never going to change – even if they are caught in their own web of lies.
They feel no remorse for what they have done and they will always find a way to shift the blame elsewhere.
4.) “You are so childish!”
This phrase is often used when you question the narcissist or take the proper steps to remove them from your life.
If you don’t allow them to have control over you, they will insult you with accusations of being foolish and childish.
When you decide to confront them on their toxic behavior, you are childish
If you remove them from social media, you are childish.
If you stop talking to them, you are childish.
They will try to spread rumors about your “childish behavior” – as if you are the person with the problem.
Don’t allow their accusations to hurt you.
Their insecurities are so large that they consistently have to focus the attention elsewhere – so that no one will realize that they are the one acting childish.
5.) “Look at everything I’ve done for you!”
They hold master’s degrees in guilt-tripping their victims.
When the narcissist feels backed into a corner, they will often use guilt to make their accuser back off.
This is a very successful tactic because it is playing on the emotions and kindness of normal human beings.
Whether the narcissist is a parent, spouse, friend, or child – they will find a way to blame you for being ungrateful and selfish.
“I took you to all your doctor’s appointments and cared for you when you were sick!”
“I bought you all those gifts and look how you repay me!”
“I’ve always been there for you! And this is the thanks that I get?”
The problem is, no amount of good deeds can cover up the habits of a toxic, jealous, narcissistic person.
In fact, this tactic shows that everything they did for you was not done out of a heart of unconditional love.
It was all done for a purpose. And that purpose was to make you indebted and dependent on them in some way.
6.) “My anxiety and depression are getting worse!”
Once again, they have come up with another brilliant plan to blame you for their own behavior.
They will blame you for being so negative, selfish, and unsupportive that you are effecting their mental health!
“Stop! You are giving me anxiety!”
“I am now on depression medication, thanks to you!”
This tactic is designed to take the attention off of them and transfer their anxiety onto you. As you feel worse, they will feel better.
Related Article: 9 Warning Signs That You Are Emotionally and Mentally Exhausted
7.) “Wow, you’ve changed!”
If you say something negative or accusatory to the narcissist, they will accuse you of having changed.
“I had so much respect for you before this.”
“You aren’t the person I thought you were.”
“You have changed so much. I don’t even know who you are anymore!”
Now that they can’t manipulate and control you, you are the person with the problem!
If they say this to you, take it as a compliment.
This means that you have stood up for yourself and enforced that their behavior is not acceptable.
Just know that they take criticism very hard and will react in a toxic manner.
Related Article: 9 Signs He is Totally Trying to Change You
They may say absolutely nothing at all.
This is called the “Silent Treatment”.
You will hear nothing from them for days, weeks, months, etc.
The purpose of this behavior is to teach you a lesson!
The narcissist wants you to know that they can easily live without you and that they don’t care how you feel.
The silent treatment is to place them in a position of control, where you cannot criticize or confront them.
Their goal is for you to come back to them and plead for a reinstated relationship. When this is done, they will demand an apology and ensure that you know that problem completely lies with you.
If this happens to you, take the opportunity to run!
Just know that when the narcissist realizes that you are completely fine with the silent treatment and are actually thriving without them, they may become even more toxic. They hate being ignored!
The narcissist has the emotional maturity of a small child and is toxic to have in your life.
Related Article: 9 Surprising Signs You May Have Anxiety
9.) “Ok. I’ll change!”
Sounds great, right!?
They’ve identified that they have a problem and are willing to change!
Wrong – most of the time this is just a tactic.
If the person truly is a narcissist, there is almost no chance that they are going to change.
They may act differently for a little while. They may even go a bit overboard with the excess attention, gifts, and praise.
However, they will most definitely return to their old ways of manipulating once they feel they have “got you back”.
Related Article: 5 Signs Your Relationship Is Absolutely Toxic
10.) “Did you hear what they said about you?”
The narcissist is divisive and controlling.
To position themselves in a place of trusted authority, they will plant seeds of doubt in your mind about those around you.
“I heard your friend talking and this is what they said about you?”
“Your Grandma thinks you’re making a bad decision.”
They will twist stories, exaggerate facts, and even lie to make you more reliant on them or destroy the reputation of someone they no longer like.
The narcissists agenda is to look better than everyone else and put themselves in a place of trusted authority in your life.
Related Article: 11 Signs You Are in a Relationship with a Narcissist
11.) “This isn’t my fault. This is your fault!”
As your relationship deteriorates, everything will be your fault.
The narcissist doesn’t feel empathy and doesn’t accept responsibility for their actions.
If they do appear to accept blame for their actions, it is usually just a tactic to get you back under their influence.
When you start creating boundaries in your relationship, they will throw a childish fit and shove all the blame over onto you.
Your feelings are invalid because everything is about them.
They expect you to come crawling back to them, begging for forgiveness.
In reality, they need to receive firmly stated boundaries or absolutely no contact.
Narcissists don’t respect boundaries, which leaves you with the healthiest choice – removing them from your life.
If you allow a narcissist to have a place in your life, you will need to get use to a life of guilt, self-sacrifice, and manipulation.
They hide their rampant insecurity behind a facade of confidence. This is the reason they are drastically opposed to criticism.
Narcissists rarely change. You simply exist to meet their self-serving needs.
If you can identify with the 11 phrases above, you should probably get a therapist and start distancing yourself from this toxic individual.