Disturbing Signs A Narcissist Is Plotting Revenge Against You

Disturbing Signs A Narcissist Is Plotting Revenge Against You Shutterstock

Broken ties with a narcissist often leave a lingering unease. Their relentless need for control doesn’t simply vanish when the relationship ends. This unease is justified: narcissists frequently harbor grudges and may plot elaborate schemes to get “even.” Here are some of the most disturbing signs that might indicate a narcissist is plotting revenge against you so that you can better recognize the threats and protect yourself.

They’re launching a smear campaign against you.

As Choosing Therapy reveals, this is one of a narcissist’s go-to tactics. Prepare for them to trash-talk you to everyone you know, from mutual friends to even your relatives. They’ll spin lies, half-truths, and paint themselves as the innocent victim to anyone who will listen. Don’t stoop to their level by trying to defend yourself. Your true actions will eventually speak louder than their calculated slander.

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They’re using social media as a weapon.

Get ready for carefully crafted posts and staged photos, all designed to portray themselves as the heartbroken hero and you as the heartless villain. Your best defense is to not respond. Block them, unfriend them, do whatever it takes to shield yourself from their toxic online performance.

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They’re trying to guilt-trip you.

Expect a wave of “you hurt me” messages, tearful pleas to reconsider, and accusations of abandoning them. Remember, this is emotional manipulation 101. Don’t let their theatrics sway you. True remorse requires action, not just crocodile tears.

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They’re trying to suck you back in with false promises.

Suddenly, they’re the ‘new and improved’ version, claiming to have learned their lesson. Don’t buy a word of it. These promises are empty; a ploy to regain power over you. You deserve a partner who respects you, not one who plays mind games.

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They’re showering you with gifts.

Out of the blue, they’re sending flowers, surprising you with expensive trinkets, offering sweet gestures. See it for the trap that it is. These gifts aren’t about love, they’re about control. Reject them at all costs, and firmly maintain your distance.

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They’re playing the victim to manipulate you.

Expect endless tales of woe, amping up the drama to make you feel responsible for their pain. Maybe they’ll threaten self-harm or claim you’ve destroyed their world. It’s emotional blackmail, pure and simple, Verywell Mind warns. Seek support from trusted friends or a therapist, don’t let them isolate you.

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They’re offering a fake apology to worm their way back in.

Suddenly, they acknowledge their mistakes and beg forgiveness. Don’t be fooled. A sincere apology requires a change in behavior, not just empty words. They’re testing the waters to see if they can regain control.

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They’re trying to make you jealous.

Expect them to flaunt a new relationship, real or staged, all for your benefit. Maybe they’ll parade their new ‘love’ in front of you or post endless lovey-dovey pics online. This is a transparent power play. Don’t take the bait; the best revenge is living your best life without them.

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They’re trying to break your boundaries.

They’ll ignore your requests for space, send unwanted texts in the middle of the night, try to ‘accidentally’ run into you. Narcissists thrive on pushing limits. Establish crystal-clear boundaries and enforce them strictly. If need be, don’t hesitate to block their number or change your routines.

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They’re threatening legal action.

If they think they have any leverage, they might resort to frivolous lawsuits or use your private information against you. Document EVERYTHING – texts, emails, any weird behavior. Don’t be intimidated, seek professional advice from a lawyer to protect yourself.

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They’re sabotaging your other relationships.

Expect them to spread lies or twist your words to undermine your friendships, family connections, or even your job. Stay vigilant, don’t let them isolate you from your support system. Honest communication and transparency with those you trust are key.

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They’re stalking you, online or in real life.

They might obsessively monitor your social media, follow you around, or show up unexpectedly at places you frequent. Remember: your safety comes first. If you feel genuinely threatened, seek legal help and document any instances of stalking.

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Their flying monkeys are on the attack.

Flying monkeys are those they recruit to do their dirty work; expect mutual friends to try to guilt you back into the relationship or paint a rosy picture of your ex, trying to make you doubt your decision. Don’t engage. Stay strong in your truth.

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They’re trying to provoke a reaction from you.

They might hurl insults, spread rumors, or even try to publicly humiliate you. They’re desperate to get you to lash out, feeding their victim narrative. Don’t give them the satisfaction. Maintain your composure; your silence is the loudest response.

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They’re dragging out the breakup drama.

Narcissists thrive on chaos. Expect them to prolong the separation with petty arguments, drawn-out legal fights, or a refusal to cooperate on practical matters. The goal is to wear you down. Seek help if needed (lawyers, therapists) and learn about “grey rocking”: becoming emotionally unresponsive to disarm them.

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They might move on quickly (or pretend to).

They need to maintain their image, so a rebound relationship is likely. Expect them to flaunt it, hoping to wound you. Remember, it’s all a show. Focus on your healing, knowing that a healthy relationship will come your way when the time is right.

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Originally from Australia, Emma Mills graduated from the University of Queensland with a dual degree in Philosophy and Applied Linguistics before moving to Los Angeles to become a professional matchmaker (a bit of a shift, obviously). Since 2015, she has helped more than 150 people find lasting love and remains passionate about bringing amazing singletons together.

Emma is also the author of the upcoming Hachette publication, "Off the Beaten Track: Finding Lasting Love in the Least Likely of Places," due out in January 2025.
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