How To Take Control Away From A Narcissist

What is narcissism? How do I take control away from a narcissist? Can I break free from a narcissist? Why are narcissists so controlling? What happens when you take control away from a narcissist? If you are looking for answers to these and more questions, this article is for you.

My name is Sean Galla, and I have been an online support group facilitator for over ten years. During this time, I have overseen numerous support groups, including facilitating narcissist support groups for men living with narcissistic partners. Part of the work we do in our support group is to offer information to help members better understand narcissism.

In this article, I will cover everything you need to know about how to take control away from a narcissist.

Avatar photo

Written by

Sean Galla

An experienced facilitator, community builder and Peer Support Specialist, Sean has been running men's groups for 10+ years. Read Sean's Full Author Bio.

What is Narcissism?

Narcissism, or NPD (Narcissistic Personality Disorder) is a mental disorder. NPD affects the way a person treats themselves and others, their identity, and their sense of self-esteem. People with NPD feel an obsessive need for admiration and validation from others.  

Narcissism gives people an unusually high sense of self-importance, and their need for attention makes them disregard other people’s feelings. They are self-centered, have a sense of entitlement, and low self-worth, and get angry when criticized.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder causes problems in relationships, school, work, and other areas of life. The narc feels unhappy and unfulfilled when they don’t get special attention and their relationships with their loved ones suffer.

There are two significant types of narcissism:

  • Overt narcissism- or grandiose narcissism, characterized by attention-seeking behavior
  • Overt Narcissism- Subtle narcissistic traits disguised as playing the victim, humbleness, and giving to charity.

This article will tell you everything you need to know on how to talk to a narcissist.

Signs of Narcissistic Control 

People with narcissism are often very charismatic and well-liked by most people. Their negative behavior is not easily noticeable, especially in a relationship. Here are some of the warning signs of narcissistic control:

They target codependent people

Narcissists target people who exhibit codependent characteristics, especially in relationships. The narcissist uses methods like highlighting the codependent’s weaknesses or guilt-tripping them into blaming themselves for everything.

The narcissists manipulate the codependent into feeling responsible for fixing everything in the relationship until they lose their sense of self. A narc’s lack of empathy leads them to target vulnerable empaths, who provide them with their narcissistic supply of attention.


Love bombing

Narcissists use manipulation tactics on others by making them feel special and to gain control. When you get into a new relationship, it’s flattering when your new partner showers you affectionately and tells you “I love you” all the time. When the affection becomes overwhelming, it’s considered love bombing, a form of emotional abuse. A narc may ask for your phone number and start love-bombing you after a few days, which is a red flag.


Gaslighting is a manipulation tactic used by people with narcissistic tendencies, and who are skilled manipulators. A narcissist, psychopath, or sociopath will use gaslighting to deceive and gain an advantage over their victims. Gaslighters often deny their words and actions even when confronted with evidence. They are dishonest in their behavior, which makes it very difficult for their victims to trust them.

Silent treatment

The grandiose narcissist and most other narcs manipulate by ignoring and cutting all interactions with their partner. The silent treatment is to control, punish, or let you know they are angry with you. Silent treatment to avoid responsibility is a form of gaslighting and indicates a toxic relationship.

Why are Narcs Addicted to Control?

Narcissists are controlling for a few key reasons:

Abandonment Issues

Most narcs have a deep-seated fear of abandonment, giving rise to their controlling behavior. They believe that without control, their loved ones will leave them. This fear causes them to become possessive and jealous. They attempt to isolate their partners from family and friends, control their finances, or monitor their movement. This behavior can sometimes lead to physical abuse when the narc goes into a rage.

Need for control

Narcissists have an overpowering need for control and dominance. They want everything to go their way and may become abusive, especially in intimate relationships. This desire for power can manifest in various ways, such as micromanagement and mind games, which stem from a sense of superiority.

Low Self Esteem

Narcissists may seem confident, but deep down, they have low self-esteem. They control others to feel powerful, often using manipulation and belittlement to feel superior. This selfish behavior creates unhealthy and toxic relationships that are hard to escape from.

Need for validation

Narcissists need validation and attention and use their attention-seeking behavior to feel important. This is exhausting for those around them, making healthy relationships difficult.

How to Take Control Away from a Narcissist

If you are in a narcissistic and abusive relationship, it is advisable to get out before the narc strips you of your self-worth. if this is not an options, it is important to learn how to deal with a narcissist. Here is how you can take control away from the narcissist and get back control over your life.

The gray rock technique

The grey rock method refers to when you act indifferent, making a narcissist lose interest in you. This is useful for dealing with narcs who thrive on drama. You can do this by giving short answers, avoiding eye contact, and focusing on other things when talking to the manipulative narc.

Set clear boundaries

Narcissists do not think of anyone except themselves. Set clear boundaries when dealing with a narcissist to protect yourself. When you set boundaries, tell them what you will and will not put up with. Without healthy boundaries, a narcissist will take advantage of you.

Distance yourself

Distance yourself from the narc in toxic relationships. Going “no contact” is a healthy and permanent solution that involves removing the person from your life. Block them from social media and your phone, avoid mutual friends, and stop thinking about them. If you are in an abusive relationship that you can’t leave immediately, start creating an escape plan

How to Take Control Away From a Narcissist: What to Expect

Narcissistic individuals cannot deal with threats to their grandiose and superior self-image, also known as narcissistic injury. Narcs have an intense desire for control and power, and any direct challenge to their dominance triggers aggressive behavior.

The fury of a narcissist can trigger an outburst when they feel they no longer have power over you. They try to re-establish their authority through aggression. Narcissistic rage is the narcissist’s intense reaction when something threatens their self-esteem or self-worth. It can manifest as direct aggression, passive-aggression, or vindictive behavior.


Resources Available For Survivors of Narcissistic Abuse

As a narcissistic abuse survivor, you can try various avenues to help you heal:

  • Support groups

A support group like MensGroup can be helpful for those who have experienced narcissistic abuse. They offer emotional support, empathy, and information to help understand past experiences. It’s never your fault in an unhealthy relationship, and everyone deserves a healthy one.

  • Professional Help

As an emotional abuse survivor, seeking professional help can help you to navigate the emotional harm. A professional will guide you to overcome the trauma bond and help you to disengage from the abuser.

  • Social support

Social support from a family member or friends who can become a support system is also an option. Love, support, and understanding from your loved ones will go a long way toward healing.

Regaining Independence from a Narcissist

Learn how to become independent and regain your independence from a controlling narcissistic partner by:

  • Self-care: Doing the things you love and rediscovering your sense of self. These may include cooking, journaling, baking, meditation, reading, etc.
  • Time alone: Take time alone to acknowledge and accept the impact of the narcissistic abuse. It helps you hear your thoughts and get centered on your relationships.
  • Accept you cannot control everything: You can only control your behavior, feelings, and thoughts. Liberate yourself and stop feeling responsible for another person’s well-being.
  • Seek therapy: If you have been codependent on your abuse for a while, independence might feel strange and daunting. Therapy will help you gain control of your life again.

Join MensGroup

Men’s Group is a men-only support forum that offers resources and meetings to anyone who wants to learn how to take control away from a narcissist. With the proper support, anyone can know how to break free from narcissistic abuse.

You will be placed in a group with other men who have been through similar experiences and who understand your situation. This gives you a safe space to share and learn from others. With a support system of other men, you can overcome the abuse and lead a successful, and happy life.

How to Take Control Away From a Narcissist: Conclusion

Narcissistic abuse is subtle and hard to detect as the narc is charming to everyone except you. Once you notice the above signs and recognize you are dealing with a narc, you must start taking control as soon as possible. If the abuse has gone on for a long while and includes physical abuse, leave and seek therapy as quickly as possible.

A group like Men’s Group offers you a platform to share your story and get support. A support group provides a safe space where you meet compassionate people ready to listen and guide you through the recovery process without judgment.