10 Phrases Narcissists Use To Play The Victim

A narcissist is someone who has an OTT sense of self-importance while not giving a flying rat about other people’s feelings, so they’re clearly not a good catch. One of their biggest and most unfortunate traits is always acting like the world is out to get them. They’re skilled at throwing out sob stories and making others feel bad for them. It’s all part of their manipulation game. If you suspect you’re dealing with a friend or partner who’s got narcissistic tendencies, keep your ears pricked for any of the following 10 phrases narcissists use to play the victim – stop allowing yourself to get screwed over!

1. “You’re Perfect For Me.”

When you first meet a narcissist, they’ll throw on the charm. Don’t be surprised if they tell you how amazing you are and how you’re exactly what they’re looking for even before they really know you. They might even use the love word early on so you think they’re your dream person. “You’re so perfect for me, I knew it from when we first met,” is the kind of love bombing sign to keep an eye out for. They want to make you feel special (so they can break you down later).

2. “All My Exes Were Crazy.”

Here’s the thing: narcissists never take responsibility for bad things that happen to them. So, it’s no surprise that they’ll tell you how all their ex-girlfriends were loco and they’ll tend to do this early on in your relationship when you’re more likely to give them the benefit of the doubt. What the narcissist doesn’t realize is that complaining about their exes just makes them look bad. What did they do to make all those exes crazy, huh?

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4. “You Have Trust Issues.”

Imagine you’re dating someone and you confront them about something they did to hurt you. Even though you might express your feelings in an empathetic way, narcissists don’t take kindly to confrontation. They’ll quickly try to turn the situation around and say that you’re the one with the problem, like by throwing trust issues at you. It’s so convenient. They’re so good at it that you might start to worry they’re right about you. Don’t second-guess yourself.

5. “This Is Your Fault.”

Narcissists always make you feel like you’re the one to blame, even for things that you never did. If they wake up late, it’s your fault because you were supposed to wake them up. If they cheated on you, they’ll claim you made them betray you because you weren’t treating them right. They know how to spin BS to make you out to be the bad person. Over time, you might let their words get under your skin, causing a lack of self-confidence – and that’s what they want.

6. “It’s Not Fair.”

When things go wrong,  narcissists always blame other people for them, and not just in relationships. They’ll say they lost their job because their boss was unfair to them (Err, right). They’ll say they were dumped even though they’d done so much for their ex. (Yawn.) They’ll insist their parents are the reason why they’re so messed up at 35. (Ugh.) They have excuses for every single thing and they’re the victim in their lives. Pass the Kleenex.

7. “You Misunderstood Me.”

You might experience feeling like the narcissist in your life constantly switches their stories around so you never know what to believe. It’s unnerving. Then, if you happen to ask them about something they previously told you, they’ll say you were the one who misunderstood them. It’s so crazy and they always think they’re right.

8. “My Friends Agree That You’re Wrong.”

If you’re in the middle of a fight, a narcissist will try to pull other people into it so that they can gang up on you. They might do this by saying, “My friends agree that you’re the wrong/crazy/unfair one.” They’re trying to make you feel less certain of your stance, but don’t fall for it! They want you to be isolated.

9. “You’re Abandoning Me.”

Narcissists know how to throw on the waterworks and make you feel badly for them — even if they’re pushing you away with their toxic behavior that you’re excusing. They know you’re loyal to them, so they try to guilt you into sticking around and defending them. A variation of this statement is, “I never thought you’d turn your back on me!” which is further used to guilt you into having sympathy for them.

10. “I Have A Problem!”

One of the ways narcissists will try to explain their lies and toxic behavior is by claiming they have a problem and you should be helping them to sort it out. This problem might be some trauma they’ve dealt with previously, such as an ex who cheated on or gaslit them. Be careful when believing their tales of pain and suffering. They could win literary awards for their storytelling skills.

11. “You’ll Never Find Someone Like Me.”

When things go wrong and you’ve confronted the narcissist in your relationship, they’ll show you their nasty side. They can be highly critical and mean, such as by telling you that you’ll never find someone like them, as though they’ve been the amazing one in your relationship. What the heck? The best thing to do is respond with, “Yes, that’s the plan!”

Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.