Does Reverse Psychology Work on a Narcissist?

By Michele Nieves | Outsmarting Narcissist

Nov 01
Why can reverse psychology work if you do not overuse it?
It’s simple a narcissist lives their life striving after narcissistic supply – which they often get when causing another person to feel frustrated, anger, helpless, unlovable, desperate, etc.
Much like a two year old that picks up a very pretty glass vase, smashes it to the ground and marvels at the sheer volume of the noise it creates and the amount of pieces flying everywhere. They look up, half guilty half impressed thinking -did I have the power to cause such massive destruction?
That’s how a narcissist feels whenever they shatter you on the inside – they look at the situation and marvel, thinking wow I’m so powerful look how angry I can make him/her, look how upset I can cause him/her to feel? I did that!!
So how does reverse psychology come in?
Once you learn how the narcissist thinks….you can use this to your advantage.
Lets say your child has a special event on the weekend they are supposed to visit the narcissistic parent (NP). If dealing with a rational person you can simply talk to the other parent, explain the situation and ask to switch weekends – a healthy parent would have the child’s best interests at heart and be willing to compromise for the happiness of their child.
The NP will think…yes!!! My ex wants something from me, I’m going to do everything to make the situation impossible and watch him/her fall apart emotionally trying to convince me I should change weekends – I’ll show him/her!!
Knowing this, you can save your breath and approach it from a different angle such as:
” I have something really important to do this coming weekend, please do not cancel visitation like you did last time it would really put me in a bind/”
Inside the narcissists mind occurs something to this effect: She/he  has something important to her and she’s/he’s  letting me know – yes!! Now I can do something that will completely mess up his/her plans and cause mountains of frustration.
Hopefully the NP will cancel the visitation in an effort to hurt you.
Now remember, nothing is a guarantee – and if the narcissist suspects you are using this technique they will not fall for it again. So use wise and sparingly.
It’s sad that you cannot negotiate and talk through events with a NP, but the truth is YOU CAN’T.
But there are ways to handle the situation that lesson your emotional reaction and reverse psychology can be a go to tool to help.

About the Author

Nobody understands what you're going through more than someone who has been there. I grew up with narcissistic family member and had intimate relationships with malignant narcissists. For the majority of my healing journey, I felt as if I was all alone. I now dedicate my life to being the person for others, that I needed on my own healing journey, so that YOU never feel alone.