Do Narcissists End Relationships Themselves?


When considering whether narcissists terminate their relationships, the answer is yes, but their methods are far from straightforward or considerate. Narcissists are known for their self-centered, manipulative, and often cruel behaviors, especially in relationships. This article explores how narcissists end relationships, the psychological strategies they use, and the deep and lasting impact on their victims.

The Narcissistic Supply and Its Loss

Narcissists thrive on what psychologists call “narcissistic supply,” which is essentially the attention, admiration, and fear they elicit from others. In romantic relationships, this supply comes from their partner’s adoration, compliance, and emotional responses. When a narcissist senses that their partner no longer provides the required level or type of supply—whether due to the partner’s emotional exhaustion, loss of interest, or increased self-respect—the narcissist’s attitude shifts dramatically.

Devaluation: The Prelude to Termination

Initially idolizing their partners during the love-bombing phase, narcissists are engaging and charming. However, once they perceive their partners as no longer useful, they enter the devaluation phase. This period is marked by the narcissist reducing their partner’s self-worth through criticism, silent treatment, and other forms of psychological manipulation. The partner might experience sudden coldness and calculated withdrawal, as the narcissist begins to convey disinterest and boredom, signaling that the relationship’s end is near.

The Discard Phase: Ending the Relationship

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