Egocentric behavior can be as harmful to a relationship as smoking is to one's health. You may know someone who constantly talks about themselves without showing any interest in your life. It's like they believe they are flawless and never make mistakes. Now, imagine that person as your partner. If you find yourself in such a situation, there are ways to deal with it. You can either try to get on the same page or end the relationship as soon as possible.
1. Have A Frank Conversation About It
The best way to deal with an egotistical partner is to have an open and honest conversation. Don't beat around the bush; be direct and clear. Your partner may think the world revolves around them, but it doesn't. Let them know that their behavior is not acceptable, and that it has affected you. You don't have to tolerate their narcissism. It's important to address the issue now rather than let it become a bigger problem later. Your partner deserves the chance to change, and while you can't be responsible for their character development, you can guide them towards the right direction.
2. Remain Calm
If you want to maintain a relationship with someone, it can be frustrating to overlook their flaws. However, it is crucial to recognize that as long as they are willing to work on their personality, it is what matters the most. Relationships require growth, and it is necessary to be self-aware and open to constructive criticism. To make your partner comfortable, it is suggested that you create an open forum where both of you can discuss each other's personality traits. You can enjoy a glass of wine together to ease the conversation and learn about yourself and each other in the process.
3. Make Yourself Vulnerable First
A healthy relationship is all about balance. It is essential to keep your mental health in check, and this requires mutual respect and understanding. When giving feedback, ensure that you use language that you would like to hear from your partner. If you find it difficult to accept criticism, both of you should take a step back and reflect on your individual identities. Remember, it is not about putting yourself in a compromising position or subjecting yourself to abuse. Instead, it is about finding a balance that works for both of you.
4. Express Their Flaws Clearly
It is important to communicate clearly and honestly with your partner, even when discussing criticisms. However, it is equally important to be supportive and encouraging. Your partner may be taken aback by the feedback, so it is important to provide them with actionable steps to improve and to approach the conversation from a place of love and respect. Maintaining balance and equality in the conversation can be achieved by setting goals, such as checking in with each other and modifying language, and tracking progress over time. Remember, it is important to be honest but never mean or hurtful towards the one you love.
5. Don't Get Frustrated
Relationships may not always work out due to changing personalities and circumstances. It is not productive to blame yourself or your partner if things do not align anymore. If your partner is unwilling or unable to make changes, it is not your responsibility to fix them. Frustration and unhappiness in a relationship only lead to further harm, so it may be necessary to end things and protect yourself. It takes courage to let go of someone who does not reciprocate your feelings, but it is a valuable skill that will ultimately benefit you in the long run.
6. Involve A Third Party
Seeking different perspectives can be incredibly beneficial in dealing with narcissism. Consider talking to a friend, family member, or even trying formal therapy as an individual or as a couple. If left unaddressed, narcissism can be a serious issue, and it's important to give your partner time to reflect and course-correct. Take the time to heal and reflect on any issues in the relationship, and keep an open mind. It's possible that the narcissistic behavior is a response to something in your own behavior.
7. If You Feel Unsafe, Stop
Confronting a narcissist can be risky, so it's important not to put yourself in a vulnerable position. If you do decide to confront them, bring in a trusted friend or group for support. However, in many cases, there may be little you can do to change their behavior. Be aware that narcissists can be capable of gaslighting and abuse, and take steps to protect yourself. Tell people around you about your plans, and don't let past investment in the relationship blind you to potential harm.
Don't let past efforts or costs outweigh your present and future happiness. It's important to prioritize your own well-being, and remember that your happiness is worth more than any previous investment in a relationship.