If you never analyze the past, you are often doomed to repeat it. And sometimes you need to go back and properly label someone in your past so you can rightly heal from the damage they did to you.
So here are five signs you dated a narcissist in the past even though you didn’t know it at the time.
1. If You Stayed with This Person Longer Than You Wanted to Because They Had an Unhealthy Control Over You, This Is Often a Sign This Person Was a Narcissist
One reason people get trapped in dating relationships even though they could easily walk away is because the other person was a covert narcissist that took their time in warping this person’s mind to make them think they had to obey the narcissist.
From the outside, we know there is no law preventing this person from leaving, the narcissist can’t physically detain them, and the person being mistreated has given the narcissist way too many chances already. From the inside of that relationship, however, the narcissist has become so big and powerful in the other person’s mind that they put up with the nonsense way too long.
1 Corinthians 15:33, “Do not be deceived: ‘Bad company ruins good morals.’” When you spend time with a narcissist, they slowly warp your morality and give you a skewed vision of your own strength and individuality.
2. If This Person Was Outwardly Sinful Towards You But You Feel You Deserved It Because of Your Own Inward Sins, This Is a Sign This Person Was a Narcissist
- “I only yelled at you because I know what you really meant when you said that to me.”
- “Why are you mad at me that I didn’t show to the family party? I knew you didn’t really want me there and so I just did what you wanted.”
- “I’m mad at you for spending time with your friends because I needed you. I know you knew that and so I know you left me at home just to hurt me.”
A narcissist justifies their outward, overt sinful actions by blaming your inward, subtle hidden motives. In reality, this person is acting like God when they do this because only God knows the heart (Luke 16:15, 1 Samuel 16:7).
Humans can only assess each other by outward actions (Matthew 7:17-20). A narcissist will try to act like they can look into your heart and then justify their own sinful behavior because of something that was in you.
3. If This Person Used You and Then Left You as Soon as You Needed Them, This Is Often a Sign of a Narcissist
When you believe you are the most important person in the world, you have no problem asking for everything and giving nothing.
Maybe they needed help financially and you helped them. But then when the tables were turned and they had the means to assist you, they didn’t. Or maybe when they were going through a difficult time emotionally, you spent hours talking to them and helping them through it. But when you needed someone to talk to, they just ignored your calls.
A narcissist has no moral compass when it comes to fairness. They are entitled and will only stay around you when they can get something from you. They scoff at God’s commands, “Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor” (1 Corinthians 10:24).
4. If You Feel You Will Never Find Someone Who Will Love You So You Are Considering Going Back to This Person Who Treated You Poorly, This Could Be a Sign That Person Is a Narcissist
If you spend enough time around a narcissist, your mind gets deluded with their lies and you start to believe their hype. Because they keep putting you down, you start to feel you are unlovable and that this person is actually doing you a favor by putting up with you. Sure, they treat you poorly and make you feel like annoyance, but it’s better than being alone, right?
No. This is a lie the narcissist wants you to believe. There are other people out there who will love you much better than this narcissistic person. Leave them. Reject their lies. And don’t ever go back.
Remember what Romans 2:8 states, “. . . but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury.” God’s judgment is coming on this person, and you don’t want to be anywhere near them when it does.
5. If They Treated Other People Before You and After You with the Same Narcissistic Actions
Sometimes two people get together and things are toxic just between the two of them. But a true narcissist will be toxic in every relationship they are in.
After you finally rid yourself of this person, you probably won’t be surprised when you learn how they acted the same way towards people they dated before you and are still acting this way towards the people they are dating after you.
Proverbs 26:11 (NIV), “As a dog returns to its vomit, so fools repeat their folly.”
Here’s a playlist of videos I’ve created about narcissists: What Does the Bible Say About Narcissism?