RDNE Stock project

Dating a Narcissist? Why They Demand Humility From You But Are Egotistical Themselves

Let’s talk about true humility. When manipulators use the term “humility,” they mean something entirely different than when a person who is empathic uses this term. True humility is not servitude. It is not about shrinking yourself for the comfort of others. It is not about denying your strengths, talents, gifts, positive internal or external qualities in order to avoid sparking someone else’s envy. Having healthy pride in yourself and giving to the world generously doesn’t require the kind of faux humility narcissists demand. If you’re in a toxic relationship where the requirement is to “humble yourself,” you’re likely experiencing abuse.

You may notice an interesting phenomenon where the narcissist in your life lashes out at any sign of healthy pride you exhibit. This is no coincidence. They prefer their victims to be “humble” and unaware of their strengths. They feign faux humility themselves, pretending they give for altruistic purposes while undervaluing the people who go above and beyond for them and are generous to them. They may be arrogant themselves, but they would never allow anyone else to have an ounce of confidence for the achievements they worked hard for or the adversity they overcame. When they declare they admire only “humble people” what they are really saying is, “I want someone self-sacrificing, who never wants anything in return, who never asks for reciprocity or mutual respect, who will cater to my every need while I abandon and neglect them, will never evoke my envy and will not even dare to speak out about the value they bring to the relationship or outside of it. I want someone who doesn’t know their strengths and isn’t aware of their achievements – if they are, it’s much harder for me to keep them under my control. I prefer someone I can exploit quietly and walk all over. How dare you set healthy boundaries or have healthy pride? You’re selfish.”

When victims defend themselves against the narcissist’s manipulation and abuse, they are told they are egotistical for defending themselves. They are labeled “insecure” or “arrogant” when in reality they are defending themselves against a chronic pattern of manipulation, and often, devaluation, stonewalling, or even jealousy induction where the narcissist has tried to provoke them deliberately.

The narcissist pretends their victims are not “humble” enough. In reality they’re not “complacent” and docile enough for the narcissist. The narcissist mischaracterizes their victims to make themselves and the people who serve them in more submissive ways look superior.  It is really more about the narcissist’s needs than it is about the actual victims of their manipulation – who tend to be generous to a fault, are naturally helpful and kind and have a healthy appreciation of their gifts and what they bring to the table. Narcissists demand you shrink for them and never ask for anything in return or reciprocity, otherwise they label you selfish for setting boundaries or asking for respect. This is not a healthy dynamic – this is a toxic relationship. If you are in a relationship with a narcissistic individual, you deserve professional support and healing. You are not alone, and you never deserved this mistreatment.