Passive-aggressive behavior is a common tactic used by many people to avoid confrontation or get their way without openly attacking others. However, when it is combined with the traits of a covert narcissist, it can become an insidious and manipulative way of controlling others. In this blog, we will explore the passive-aggressive tactics used by covert narcissists and how to save you from these weird things covert narcissists do. But let’s first discuss who really are covert narcissists?
Who are Covert Narcissists?
Covert narcissists are individuals who have a grandiose sense of self-importance and a need for admiration, but they hide their true nature behind a facade of humility and selflessness. They are skilled at manipulating others and getting what they want without appearing to be selfish or self-centered. Passive-aggressive tactics are an effective tool for them and these are weird things covert narcissists do to achieve their goals while maintaining their image as caring and empathetic individuals.
Let’s discuss these weird things covert narcissists do as their passive aggressive methods.
Weird things covert narcissists do as their passive aggressive methods
One of the most common passive-aggressive tactics used by covert narcissists is procrastination. They may delay completing tasks or fulfilling commitments in order to avoid confrontation or criticism. For example, a covert narcissist might promise to help a friend move but then repeatedly postpone the date, citing various excuses. This behavior can cause frustration and confusion for the other person, who may begin to question the narcissist’s sincerity and reliability.
Another common tactic is the silent treatment. Covert narcissists may withhold communication or affection as a way of punishing others or manipulating them into compliance. For example, a narcissistic partner might stop speaking to his/her other partner for days or weeks in order to gain leverage or control. This behavior can be especially damaging in close relationships, where trust and communication are essential.
Gas lighting techniques
Gas lighting is another thing that is included in the weird things covert narcissists do as their passive aggressive tactics. This involves manipulating someone’s perception of reality in order to make them doubt their own memories, feelings, or sanity. For example, a narcissist might deny saying or doing something hurtful, even if there is evidence to the contrary. This behavior can be extremely confusing and disorienting, and can make the other person feel like they are losing their grip on reality.
Covert narcissists also often use guilt as a means of manipulation. These are weird things covert narcissists do to make others feel responsible for their own happiness or well-being. Or they might use emotional appeals to get their way. For example, a narcissistic parent might guilt-trip their child into spending time with them, even if the child has other commitments or desires. This behavior can be especially damaging in parent-child relationships, where the power dynamic is inherently imbalanced.
Fake Humor Methods
Finally, covert narcissists may use passive-aggressive humor as a way of deflecting criticism or hiding their true intentions. These are the weird things covert narcissists do as a way of expressing their displeasure or getting their point across, while maintaining a veneer of humor and lightheartedness. This behavior can be difficult to recognize, as it is often masked by a facade of humor or playfulness.
How to save yourself?
If you suspect that someone in your life may be using passive-aggressive tactics to manipulate and control you. Then you can save yourself from these weird things covert narcissists do by taking following steps.
First, educate yourself about the tactics used by covert narcissists and how to recognize them. Covert narcissists are individuals who have a strong sense of entitlement, lack empathy, and have a need for admiration. They may appear humble and meek on the surface, but they can be very manipulative and controlling in their behavior. They are also prone to gas lighting and can be very sensitive to criticism or rejection.
Trusting your instincts
Second, trust your instincts and pay attention to your feelings when interacting with this person. If you feel consistently drained, confused, or upset after spending time with them, it may be a sign that they are using passive-aggressive tactics on you.
Setting boundaries is Important
Third, set boundaries and stick to them. Covert narcissists may try to push your boundaries in order to get their way, so it is important to be firm and clear about your expectations and limits. Before you can set boundaries with a covert narcissist, it is essential to understand your own needs and boundaries. What are your personal limits? What behaviors are unacceptable to you? Knowing your own boundaries will help you communicate them effectively to the narcissist.
When communicating with a covert narcissist, it is essential to be clear and direct. Use “I” statements to express your feelings and needs. For example, instead of saying “You always make me feel bad,” say “When you say negative things about me, it hurts my feelings.” This helps to avoid defensiveness and puts the focus on your feelings and needs.
It is essential to establish consequences for boundary violations. This could be a verbal warning or a consequence such as leaving the conversation or ending the relationship.
Seek support to save yourself from these weird things covert narcissists do
Fourth, seek support from others who can offer you validation and perspective. A therapist or trusted friend can help you navigate the complex dynamics of a relationship with a covert narcissist. Overall, seeking support from a narcissist can be challenging, but it’s important to prioritize your own needs and well-being. Remember to set realistic expectations, communicate clearly, and seek support from other sources if necessary.
Finally, setting boundaries with a covert narcissist requires patience, assertiveness, and a clear understanding of your own needs and limits. By following these steps, you can establish healthy boundaries that will help you maintain your emotional well-being and avoid being manipulated or controlled by the narcissist.