Narcissists Cannot Love You

Updated on November 15, 2017
SinDelle profile image

The Little Shaman is a spiritual counselor, hypnotherapist, and a specialist in Cluster B personality disorders.

Many people have been through the hell that is a relationship with a pathological narcissist, and something that is on a lot of people's minds is whether or not the narcissist is capable of loving other people. We will explore that here.

The Truth is...

Can narcissists love? The short answer is no. The narcissist does not love you. The narcissist doesn't love anybody, not even themselves. Especially not themselves. This can be hard to hear and a lot of people don't want to believe it, but sugarcoating things is not the right thing to do here.

If you are in a relationship with a narcissist, you are likely the only one in the relationship with any genuine feelings for the other person. That's not to say the narcissist has no genuine feelings at all. They do. They just don't have any genuine feelings for you.

We've all heard that old adage, "If you don't love yourself, you can't love anybody else." It may be old but it's also true, and the narcissist is a perfect example of it. They don't love themselves and because of that, they cannot love anyone else. They also can't believe anyone can love them, either (regardless of what they may say to the contrary). Loving a narcissist is the same as loving a character on a TV show. This is not a real person and can never reciprocate. It is of course up to the individual if they choose to pursue a relationship with someone who is likely not capable of loving them back, but they should at least know what they are getting into.

The Reality of The Situation

It's one thing to understand that a narcissistic partner is not able to love you. It's something else entirely to really understand and internalize what this actually means in practical terms. This is not a 'normal' relationship that is respectful and considerate but simply devoid of affection. This is living in a war zone with someone who is actively and purposely trying to sabotage and destroy your life because not only do they not love you, they are pathologically, even obsessively envious of you and everything you have. Why should you have things that they don't have? They endeavor to take those things away from you. If they can't have it, nobody can.

Narcissists are not just cold and empty. They are white-hot infernos of rage, hatred and jealousy. Most of that is actually directed at themselves, but they often project it outward in a vain attempt to get some relief from it. And the people they direct it at are the people closest to them.

The Cold, Hard Facts

Not only does the narcissist not love you, they don't really consider you a person at all. Not in the way they consider themselves to be a person. That's why they behave the way they do. Some people have punching bags that they take their anger and frustration out on. Narcissists often use other human beings this way. This is because they don't see them as people. It's not malicious, exactly. They're just not built that way.

The only reason narcissists get into relationships in the first place is to validate themselves: "If someone loves me, I matter. If someone has sex with me, I matter. If someone cares about me, I matter. If someone pays attention to me, I matter. I exist. I am important." They don't care about sharing their lives, or happy Christmases with the family or what you did at work today or anything like that at all. They would be happiest if you simply did not exist until they needed you to. Again, this in and of itself is not malicious. They just have no real interest in anyone but themselves. They're focused on what they're doing and what they're thinking and what they want. That's basically it.

Of course, you do exist. You have needs and you have goals and plans and things you want to do. If these do not involve the narcissist, the narcissist is not interested. If it does involve the narcissist but the narcissist doesn't want to do it, the narcissist is not interested. There is no give and take in this kind of relationship. There is only take. There's no understanding, no support. It's all about what they need, what they want. Try to take the focus off of that, and there will be very big problems. Nothing you say really matters and nothing you do really matters unless it has to do with the narcissist. This is what the disorder is.

Anyone who has dealt with a narcissist knows these things are the truth. In fact, the truth is really a lot worse than is being stated here. It's not a pretty picture at all. The abuse, the lies, the emotional blackmail, the constant disruption of people's lives, the destruction of their peace, the nonstop creation of disasters and catastrophes, the complete lack of stability, the never-ending drama, the triangulation, the splitting, the irresponsibility, the childishness, the endless arguments over nothing and vicious attacks for no reason, the total lack of respect, the complete disregard for other people's feelings... It's ugly. Dealing with a narcissist is ugly. It's torture.

Conclusion

Narcissists more than likely don't have the capacity to love at all. They can feel infatuated and they can become obsessed, but these things are not love. Narcissists often think they love others, but if you ask them why they love someone or what they love about that person, the answer will often be a list of things the person does for them. It is generally not be a list of things about the person themselves.

For example, a non-narcissistic person might say, "I love my wife because she's so strong" or "I love how my husband is so passionate about things." A narcissist might say things like, "I love her because she makes me feel smart" or "I love the way he gives me stability." It's all about what someone is doing for them. There's no recognition or understanding of the person as an individual. People only matter to the narcissist if they can do something for the narcissist. Once someone's usefulness goes away, the "feelings" the narcissist had for that person usually go away, too. Feelings for others are superficial and really only extend as far as the person relates to the narcissist. Anything beyond that does not matter. To the narcissist, it doesn't even exist. They are like the center of a wheel, and people are the spokes. They see everyone and everything as an extension of themselves in some way or another. Everything flows from them, and toward them. They are the Sun that every other thing revolves around. Not just the brightest star but the only star.

There are many people right now suffering in relationships and holding onto hope that things will change. The reality is, the chances are 1000 to 1. Because of the unique and damaged way they see and relate to other people, it isn't really possible for narcissists to love others. There can only be one Sun. Narcissists are just too focused on themselves and their problems. There is no room for anyone else.

Sound Off

Do you think it's possible for narcissists to love?

See results

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      Melanie 

      2 months ago

      These were excellent writings about the malignant narcissist. Very important information to know. Thank God for Google and all that I have read and learned for the past 3 years.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, pairedlife.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://pairedlife.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)