Why Are Narcissists So Mean, Rude, Hateful & Nasty to People They Supposedly Love? by Dr. Bethany Cook Clinical Psychologist

Relationships Expert Q&A
10 months ago

Why Are Narcissists So Mean, Rude, Hateful & Nasty to People They Supposedly Love?

Q. Why are narcissists so mean, rude, hateful and nasty to the people they supposedly love?

Narcissists are nasty and rude because making you feel badly about yourself is a vital component in their cycle of abuse. It also brings them joy to watch you suffer. Narcissists DGAF about you or your feelings. You are an "object" to them to be used and juggled and played with until they are done (or you are done). They desire 100-percent control over you and the relationship and if you feel badly about yourself you are easier to manipulate and less likely to fight back.

The Cycle

Start of Relationship

1. Idealization (Love Bombing) Stage: The love bombing stage is where they do everything they can to get you to fall in love with them. You feel on top of the world and as if someone "finally notices and loves the real me."

2. Devaluation Stage: Once the narcissist feels you are "hooked" they will move to the next phase, which is tearing you down. This is where all the nasty comments come into play. These hateful comments are used to make you feel insecure and unstable as a person so you begin to depend on the narcissist for support. The hurtful words are used in combination with abusive communication styles including but not limited to:

  • stonewalling
  • unnecessary criticism
  • compliments laced with rude comments
  • mind games
  • unfair comparisons
  • lack of validating feelings
  • name calling
  • public and private humiliation
  • passive aggressive comments

3. Discard Stage

Once you are no longer feeding the narcissist's ego they will pull away from you, stop calling, ghost you and make you feel "discarded." These behaviors, combined with the hurtful comments, will make you start to pull away from the narcissist. The second the narcissist senses you pull back (emotionally, physically or both) they shift tactics; the devaluation stops and they make efforts to start winning you back.

4. Hoover Stage

Remember, a narcissist lacks empathy (even for their own children) and will use any means necessary to pull you back into their life (and the abuse cycle). They will cry, beg, plead, threaten, whatever it is they think you want to see or hear. Often this stage makes you feel empowered that things might "actually change" because you’ve never seen them sob/cry/beg for forgiveness before. They may even promise to start therapy, promise to stop fighting, promise to do anything you ask to get you back. Once they feel you soften toward them they may add a few love bombing moments to ensure you’re "hooked" and then the cycle repeats (devaluation comes next).

End of Relationship

5. Exit

The only way out of this hamster wheel from hell is when the narcissist moves on and leaves you alone (which they rarely do because their ego needs lots of objects/people around them in their fray) or you leave (which is very hard to do on your own after you’ve been mentally tormented/abused by a master manipulator).

If someone is 100 percent rude and nasty to you all the time, they aren’t a narcissist. They could have a different personality disorder or they may just be an asshole.

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Elisa Schmitz
Wow, I've never seen an explanation of what a narcissist does so clearly broken down before. Thank you for illuminating this situation so we can be more aware and take action to avoid and remove ourselves from the cycle!
bepositive
Been there, done that, no fun!

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