Narcissistic Love Bombing: The Signs And Suitable Responses
Published in Aug 2020 / Updated in Aug 2021
Narcissistic love bombing can feel like a regular infatuation phase when your partner is all over you, wants to spoil you, and desires to make you happy.
That is why you might miss this underhanded move if you are too caught up enjoying the endless attention from your love-struck lover.
But narcissists don't just love bombs when the relationship is starting out. They use it as a tactic to win you back when they have done something terrible and you might slip away.
You can also expect love bombs when you are being warmed up to do a favor. The point is, with a narcissistic love bomb, there is always a sinister angle.
Regular romantic partners can do it because they feel closer to you or because of the special bond you share. But narcissists are not actually capable of loving anyone else, which means their love bombs always have an ulterior motive.
A love bomb is a narcissist's secret weapon. The flurry of loving gestures is meant to help the person control you. A narcissist will use love bombs to break down your defenses and open you to their outrageous suggestions and demands.
But be careful if the love bombs fail. You will most likely be introduced to hate bombs or encounter a full-blown narcissistic rage episode.
In case you decide the hate bombs are too much to handle and leave, you can expect more love bombing as a ploy to get you back.
That's why narcissistic love bombing after a breakup is very common. These love-hate cycles often lead to trauma bonding. The romantic victims of narcissists keep going back despite their abuse at their hands in the past.
The Purpose Of A Narcissistic Love Bomb
A love bomb for a narcissist is a way to make you feel that they are all you ever wanted. Naturally, that makes you drop your guard and think and want the best for this person. It is this vulnerability the narcissist counts on.
If you wonder what love bombing appears like, it will feel you have the most loving partner in the world. You will feel that you have finally found "the one"; your one perfect partner.
In the end, you are supposed to do something in return as payment for the affection you have received. So, don't expect a narcissist to love bomb and then ghost you.
Someone with this personality trait will stick around to get more than their fair repayment for the love they have shown.
Signs Of Love Bombing
While it's usual for your romantic partner to shower you with love, love-bombing is slightly different. The attention will be over the top and might even seem a little overbearing.
More importantly, you might not understand the reason besides the sudden increase in interest.
In healthy relationships, when this happens, there is usually an anniversary, a promotion at work, an apology, or a clear reason for the increased attention.
But with a love bomb, you will not know what brought on the strange behavior. The extravagant shows of affection will leave you a little confused, even though you might totally enjoy yourself.
At the back of your mind, you will be wondering what's up. Especially once you realize that your reaction to the love gestures is so important to the narcissist.
Unless you are thoroughly impressed, grateful, and wondering how you will ever repay the affection, the narcissist will never be satisfied.
Which brings us to the question: how long does narcissistic love bombing last? As long as you are impressed and vulnerable after the love bombing session, the love-bombing will end. The narcissist will start working on getting paid for the effort.
In short, the love bombing is one side of the transaction.
How To Respond To A Narcissist Love Bombs
As you know, everything a narcissist gives you, whether you asked for it or not, comes at a terrible price. If you let the love bomb entrapment trick work, you will definitely regret it down the road.
If you want, you can enjoy the extra attention. But, make sure you don't end up dropping your guard. You should be careful of another thing - the reaction you will get from the narcissist afterward.
For instance, if they realize that the love bomb didn't work, they might try hate bombing, gaslighting. Even some other toxic, manipulative technique to make your life hell.
Another way to respond to narcissistic love bombing is to ignore the gestures as much as possible. Ultimately, this person wants you to feel grateful and indebted to them.
Even though they want you to think the love bombs are purely for your benefit, that couldn't be further from the truth. They also want the attention you give them for the gestures.
Without this feedback, the love-bombing will end. And, most likely, whatever manipulative thing they wanted to do to you afterward.
Knowing all this, do you think you might be a victim of narcissist love bombing? If so, you better be careful because after the endless attention, you will get nothing but toxicity.
It's not just romantic partners who need to watch out for narcissistic love bombing. Egocentric friends can also love bombs, and so can relatives.
Genuine love is unconditional, but narcissistic love bombing always has strings attached. So, learn how to respond to narcissistic love bombing. If you don't, you will become a miserable victim of toxic manipulation.