People who love you want good things for you. They want you to be happy. They applaud your successes and celebrate them with you.
Narcissists and other toxic personalities often respond to their significant other’s or children’s successes with bitterness and resentment. They typically minimize and belittle your successes while simultaneously (with no appreciation of irony) take credit for them.
Your successes or any positive recognition (e.g., professional awards or community commendations) are perceived as a threat. Consider all the ways your spouse/ex tries to make you feel small and inadequate. Professional success and community recognition contradict their “you’re an inadequate loser” narrative. You’re easier to control and manipulate when feel less than and desperate for their admiration.
This kind of person also feels jealous of your achievements. They often feel slighted and ignored when you’re recognized for your successes. Even if it’s in a profession, hobby or community affiliation in which they neither participate nor have any interest (or if they do, don’t expend the effort), they’re still jealous.
Narcissists, borderlines and other emotionally immature, self-absorbed people are often pathologically entitled. Anything good that happens to you is experienced as something good that isn’t happening to them.
Conversely, they delight in your setbacks and failures. They take a perverse pleasure in your misfortunes. In case you’re wondering, these are not the actions and sentiments of someone who loves you and has your back. These are the actions and sentiments of someone you’d be wise to watch your back.
Dr. Tara J. Palmatier, PsyD helps individuals work through their relationship and codependency issues via telephone or Skype. She specializes in helping men and women trying to break free of an abusive relationship, cope with the stress of an abusive relationship or heal from an abusive relationship. She combines practical advice, emotional support and goal-oriented outcomes. Please visit the Schedule a Session page for professional inquiries or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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