17 Reactions to Expect When a Narcissist Knows You Have Figured Him Out (2022)

11 min read

It’s finally dawned on you.

The man you love has a narcissistic personality disorder. He’s abusive, mercilessly manipulative, and considers himself the center of the universe.

You’re tired!

However, now that you’ve figured him out, you’re worried. You’ve previously heard of narcissists getting worse once people figured them out.

You’re wondering what reactions to expect when a narcissist knows you’ve figured him out as well as how to react to his different reactions.

Today’s article is here to help. This post highlights 17 reactions to expect when a narcissist knows you have figured him out. You’ll also learn how to respond to his different responses once he figures you’re on to him.

But first, let’s understand what it means to describe someone as a narcissist.

What Does It Mean to Call Someone a Narcissist?

A narcissist has an inflated sense of self-importance and a deep need for admiration from others. They often lack empathy and can be very manipulative.

And that’s not all!

Most narcissists tend to have an inability to take criticism, have dreams of extreme wealth, are envious, think everyone is jealous of them, and tend to have arrogant attitudes.

But what would make someone act this way?

Related: Typical Examples Of Narcissist Text Messages & How To Respond

Why Do Narcissists Act the Way They Do?

One of the main reasons narcissists act the way they do is that they rely too much on external validation.

Most narcissists love themselves based on how people treat them.

As a result, they have an insatiable thirst for admiration and are very sensitive to criticism.

In fact, any kind of disapproval is often met with rage or resentment since the narcissist feels that their inflated sense of self-worth has been attacked. Unfortunately, this can often lead to abusive and manipulative behavior as the narcissist tries to control those around them to feed their ego.

Now that we know a little more about what it means to be a narcissist, let’s look at the different reactions you might expect from your narcissistic partner when he knows you’ve figured him out.

When a narcissist knows you have figured him out

17 Reactions To Expect When A Narcissist Knows You Have Figured Him Out

#1. He’ll Try Gaslighting You

Once a narcissist knows you have figured him out, his first line of defense will be to gaslight you.

A narcissist will use this covert emotional manipulation to create a false narrative that makes you doubt your initial findings.

He may make you feel like you’re crazy for thinking he has a personality disorder or that you’re overreacting to his behavior.

Some of the statements he’s likely to use include, “You’re crazy! That’s not how I recall it. That’s not what happened.”

The goal of gaslighting is to get you to doubt yourself so that you’ll no longer challenge the narcissist’s authority.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts gaslighting you, be firm and insist on your original version of events.

Stay clear-headed, and don’t let him manipulate you into thinking you’re wrong. Document any incidents and keep track of how he makes you feel.

This will help you build a stronger case down the road if things get worse.

Related: How Narcissists Destroy Empaths: 19 Things You Need To Know

#2. He’ll Use Trauma Bonding to Rattle You Up

Once a narcissist discovers you’re onto them, he may resort to creating a trauma bond.

Healthline describes a trauma bond as an emotional attachment that develops from repeated manipulative behaviors and traumatic experiences.

It’s often used as a way to keep you hooked in the relationship so that you’ll continue to tolerate the narcissist’s bad behavior.

He may act abusive, then apologize and promise never to repeat. And since you remember the good days of your relationship, you’ll be more likely to forgive him and give him another chance.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts using trauma bonding tactics on you, it’s important to remember that this is a form of emotional abuse.

Don’t tolerate it or fall for his crocodile tears!

Stand up for yourself and set boundaries. Remember, you don’t need someone who will mistreat you. If possible, sever all ties with the person. Block all forms of physical and digital communication.

You deserve better!

Related Content: Do Narcissists Feel Guilt? Key Insights

#3. He’ll Go on a Narcissistic Rage

If the narcissist can’t get you to doubt yourself, he’ll likely go into a narcissistic rage.

This is his way of trying to scare you into submission, and it often includes verbal abuse, threats, and intimidation tactics.

The goal is to make you feel so small and insignificant that you eventually give up and return to the way things were.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts lashing out at you, staying calm and collected is essential.

Don’t let him see that he’s getting to you.

Be firm and hold your line. Set boundaries and know when enough is enough. Remember, you don’t deserve to be treated this way.

If possible, remove yourself from the situation until he has calmed down. You don’t want to get into a physical altercation with him.

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#4. He Might Give You the Silent Treatment

If the narcissist can’t get you to go into a rage or gaslight you, he may give you the silent treatment.

This is his way of punishing you and manipulating you. He’ll completely shut down and refuse to talk to you.

The goal is to make you feel isolated and make you lose control.

How do you respond?

Don’t take the bait if your partner starts giving you the silent treatment. Don’t try to get him to talk or engage him in any way.

Wait for him to come around on his own.

The longer he gives you the silent treatment, the more power he thinks he has over you.

Don’t give him that satisfaction! If possible, stay busy and keep yourself occupied.

This will help take your mind off the situation, and eventually, he’ll get tired of not having any control over you.

#5. He’ll Play the Victim Card

The narcissist is an expert at playing the victim card.

Whenever he gets into trouble, he’ll claim that it’s all your fault and that you’re being unfair to him.

He’ll make you feel like you’re the one who’s responsible for his bad behavior. He may even go further and blame his destructive behaviors on his upbringing or a previous relationship.

In short, he won’t take responsibility for any of his actions.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts playing the victim card, don’t fall for it.

Remember, he’s the one who is choosing to behave this way, and it’s not your responsibility to make him feel better.

Stand up for yourself, and don’t let him manipulate you.

Related Content: 11 Best Ways To Emotionally Detach From A Narcissist

#6. He May Start Projecting

When a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he might start projecting.

This means that he will start accusing you of the very things that he is doing.

For example, if he’s cheating on you, he’ll accuse you of being unfaithful. If he’s abusive, he’ll accuse you of being mean.

He will do anything to make you doubt yourself and question your sanity.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts projecting, don’t fall for it.

Remember, he’s the one who is doing these things, not you.

Stay strong, and don’t let him get to you. If possible, have evidence to back up your claims.

This will help you stay firm in your convictions and show him that you’re not going to be manipulated.

#7. He May Try to Devalue You

When a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he may start to devalue you.

This means that he will start treating you like you’re worthless and not worth his time.

He’ll make fun of you, insult you, and put you down.

The goal is to make you feel so bad about yourself that you’ll eventually give up and go back to the way things were.

And that’s not all!

Other than hate bombing you, a narcissist may resort to physical violence as a way of making you feel devalued.

Related: 21 Signs Of A Self-Entitled Person & How To Deal With Them

How do you respond?

If your partner starts devaluing you, don’t take it.

Remember, you are not worthless, and you deserve to be treated with respect. Stand up for yourself and don’t let him get away with this behavior.

If the situation gets physical, get out of there! You don’t want to put yourself in danger.

When A Narcissist Knows You Have Figured Him Out
Image by Javaistan from Pixabay

#8. He Plays the Fear and Flaws Card

If a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he might play the fear and flaws card.

This means that he will start pointing out all your weaknesses and playing up your fears.

He’ll make you feel like you’re not good enough and that you can’t survive without him. He may say statements such as, “You’re nothing without me. Nobody will want you.” He’ll also point out your flaws and say that you’re not good enough the way you are.

By doing this, your narcissist partner is looking to break you down and manipulate you into surrendering.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts playing the fear and flaws card, don’t fall for it.

Remember, you are not alone, and you are capable of taking care of yourself. Stand up for yourself, and don’t let him put you down.

If possible, have a support system in place so that you can get through this tough time.

Related: Super Empath Vs Narcissist & What We Can Learn From Both

#9. He Might Bait You into a Fight

When a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he might bait you into a fight.

This means that he will do things to get under your skin and push your buttons. He’ll taunt you, tease you, and make fun of you.

The goal is to get you so angry that you lash out at him.

Once you’ve fought with him, he can then use that as evidence to show that you’re the one who is crazy and unstable.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts baiting you into a fight, don’t fall for it.

Remain emotionless! Don’t let him get to you.

If possible, walk away from the situation until you’ve calmed down. Once you’re in a better frame of mind, talk to him about what happened.

Make sure that you remain calm during the conversation.

#10. He’ll Try to Level Up Your Mistakes

When a narcissist knows you have figured him out, he might try to attack your integrity.

He’ll look back at your past mistakes and justify his abuse as a response to those.

This is a way of making you feel like you’re also at fault and have no grounds to judge him for his actions.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts attacking your integrity, don’t fall for it.

Remember, you are not perfect, and you will make mistakes.

However, that doesn’t give him the right to abuse you. Stand up for yourself and don’t let him get away with this behavior.

#11. He’ll Try and Blackmail You

When a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he might try to blackmail you.

This means that he will threaten to reveal your secrets or do something to hurt you if you don’t go back to the way things were.

He might even go ahead and clear out your bank account, withhold access to your own children, withhold child support or threaten to share intimate photos of you publicly.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts blackmailing you, don’t fall for it.

Tell him that you will not be blackmailed and that his threats will not work.

If necessary, get legal help to protect yourself from any further abuse. Remember, you have rights, and you should not tolerate this.

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#12. He Could Also Discard You

When a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he might discard you.

This means that he will end the relationship and move on to someone easier to manipulate. He’ll do this in a way that makes it look like it was your fault and that you were the one who ended things.

The goal is to make you feel like you’re not good enough and that you can’t survive without him.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts discarding you, let him go.

Remember, this isn’t your fault! You did nothing wrong, and you deserve better than this.

Take care of yourself and focus on your happiness.

You will find someone who loves and respects you for who you are.

Related: Things Narcissistic Mothers Say

Tips How To Deal With A Narcissistic Elderly Mother

#13. He Might Start to Love Bomb You

When a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he might start love bombing you.

This means that he will shower you with attention, compliments, and affection. He’ll make it seem like things are going back to how they were and that he’s changed.

The goal is to get you to trust him again and to make you believe that he’s sorry for his behavior.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts love bombing you, don’t fall for it.

Remember, this is just a ploy to get you to trust him again. Don’t forget what he did in the past, and be careful not to get sucked in.

Stay strong, and don’t let him manipulate you.

Related Content: 13 EXPERT Tips – How To Talk To A Narcissist

#14. He Might Start A Smear Campaign

When a narcissist knows you have figured him out, he might start a smear campaign against you.

This means that he will spread rumors about you and try to ruin your reputation. He’ll do this to make you look bad and to make others believe that you’re not worth trusting.

The goal is to make you feel alone and isolated.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts a smear campaign against you, don’t fall for it.

Remember, you have nothing to be ashamed of! Stand up for yourself and fight back against the rumors.

Talk to your friends and family about what’s going on and ask for their support.

You are not alone, and you will get through this.

#15. He Might Continue With The Narcissistic Abuse

When a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he might continue with the abuse.

This means that he will keep abusing you emotionally, mentally, and physically. He’ll do this to regain control over you and make sure that you know who’s boss.

The goal is to break you down and make you feel like you can’t survive without him.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts abusing you again, don’t fall for it.

Remember, you are not alone! Get help from a friend or family member and talk to them about what’s going on.

There is support for you, and you can get through this.

You are strong, and you can survive anything.

When a narcissist knows you have figured him out
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#16. He Might Threaten to Hurt or Kill Himself

When a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he might start threatening to hurt or kill himself.

He’ll do this as a way of manipulating you and trying to get you to back down.

The goal is to make you feel guilty and responsible for his emotional state.

How do you respond?

If your partner starts threatening to hurt or kill himself, don’t fall for it.

Remember, this is just a ploy to get you to back down.

Don’t let him manipulate you, and don’t feel guilty about his threats.

Get help from a friend or family member and talk to them about what’s going on.

#17. He Might Respond With a Fauxpology

When a narcissist knows you have him figured out, he might respond with a fauxpology. He will apologize for his behavior, but he won’t mean it.

The goal is to make you believe that he’s sorry and wants to change.

How do you respond?

If your partner responds with a fauxpology, don’t fall for it.

Remember, this is just a ploy to get you to trust him again. Don’t forget what he did in the past, and be careful not to get sucked in.

Stay strong, and don’t let him manipulate you.

Reactions To Expect When a Narcissist Knows You Have Figured Him Out FAQ

How Does a Narcissist React When They Can’t Control You?

When narcissists feel threatened, they will go into attack mode to defend themselves.

The fear of being seen for who you are can be overwhelming, and the thought petrifies them.

This feeling may lead someone with NPD (narcissism personality disorder) towards doing anything necessary. Even if it means hurting others or taking away what we love about ourselves.

Related Content: What Makes A Narcissist Panic? – 15 Proven Strategies

What Happens When a Narcissist is Exposed?

When a narcissist is exposed, they may react with denial, rage, and violence.

They may also try to discredit the person who exposed them or try to turn people against them. The narcissist will do anything to keep his position. If you expose him as false, arbitrary, or untenable, then he’ll become evasive and contradictory

Any Further Questions?

There you go.

A list of 17 reactions to expect when a narcissist knows you have figured him out.

Have you noticed any of these reactions with your narcissist partner? How did you deal with them? Are you finally out of that toxic relationship? 

Tell us in the comment section below.

Do you know of any other reactions to expect? Please share it in the comment section.

And if you have any questions regarding the reactions discussed in this article, please ask them in the comment section.

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