5 Things Sociopaths and Narcissists Say to Make You Feel Crazy

When you hear the word “psychopath”, you might think of Hannibal Lecter or Ted Bundy, but most psychopaths are actually non-violent and non-incarcerated members of society. In fact, there’s a good chance they’ll seem exceptionally altruistic and innocent to the average onlooker.

As described in the Psychopath Free book, psychopaths are first and foremost social predators. With no conscience, they’re able to use charm and manipulation to get what they want from others—whether it be families, friendships, relationships, cults, the workplace, or even politics. The bottom line is, they modify their personalities to become exactly the person they think you want them to be. And they’re good at it.

But when they no longer need anything from you, that’s when the crazy-making behavior begins. Here are some common phrases you’ll hear from a psychopath who’s trying to make you doubt your sanity:

1. “You over-analyze everything.”

Of course there are people who DO read too much into situations. The difference with psychopaths is that you’ll always discover you were correct in retrospect. They intentionally do things to make you feel on-edge or paranoid, like flirt with a once-denounced ex over social media for the whole world to see. When you question them, they accuse you of over-analyzing the situation. But then a month later, you discover they were actually cheating with that person. Psychopaths want you to doubt your intuition by making you feel like a crazy detective, constantly planting hints to make you feel anxious and then blaming you for having that anxiety.

2. “I hate drama.”

And yet, you’ll soon come to discover there’s more drama surrounding them than anyone you’ve ever known. Psychopaths will first idealize you above everyone else, praising you for your perfect easy-going nature. But because they are perpetually bored, this never lasts long. They are pathological liars, serial cheaters, and eternal victims. Before long, these qualities inevitably start to surface and cause you overwhelming confusion. Any time you mention your concerns or frustration, they’ll declare their hatred of drama and make you feel bad for reacting to their horrible behavior (instead of addressing the behavior itself).

3. “You’re so sensitive.”

Psychopaths manufacture emotions in others—it’s what they do. After once showering you with 24/7 praise and flattery, they’ll ignore you for days on end and wait for you to react. When you finally do, they’ll accuse you of being sensitive or needy. They’ll insult, belittle, and criticize you (usually in a teasing/joking demeanor), pushing your boundaries until you finally speak up. Then they use your manufactured reactions to make you seem crazy. Within weeks, psychopaths can turn an exceptionally easy-going person into an unrecognizable mess of insecurities and self-doubt.

4. “You misunderstood me.”

Sure, healthy couples have misunderstandings and miscommunications all the time. But with psychopaths, they’ll intentionally say things they know will provoke you. Then when you react, they’ll turn it around on you and blame you for misunderstanding. Oftentimes, they’ll even deny that they ever said it. This is called gaslighting—blatantly doing or saying something, and then blaming you for misinterpreting it (or denying that it even took place). The fact is, you understood what they said perfectly fine. They’re just trying to make you doubt your sanity.

5. “You’re crazy / bipolar / jealous / bitter / in love with me.”

The name-calling usually starts when things are going downhill fast. According to a psychopath, all of their ex lovers, colleagues, and friends are crazy, bipolar, jealous, bitter, or in love with them. This becomes very confusing when they start reaching out to those very same people they once denounced to you, using them to triangulate and cause chaos (making the psychopath appear in high-demand at all times). Then they toss you in that very same “crazy” bucket, continuing their never-ending cycle of idealizing and devaluing anyone unfortunate enough to cross their path.

The only way out is to go No Contact. This means no texts, calls, emails, or even Facebook friendships. Otherwise you can be guaranteed that they’ll do anything and everything in their power to make you feel crazy. The good news is, when a psychopath tries to make you doubt your intuition, it means your intuition was causing them trouble. Psychopaths seek to psychologically destroy anyone who might threaten their illusion of normalcy to the world. So when they begin playing mind games with you, it’s actually a strange indirect tribute to your ability to notice that something was “off” about them.

This thread originally appeared on Psychopathfree and was written by Peace

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24 thoughts on “5 Things Sociopaths and Narcissists Say to Make You Feel Crazy

  • June 17, 2016 at 3:51 am

    Same thing has happened in my marriage?

  • June 14, 2016 at 6:35 pm

    I would strongly suggest that you use your independance and internal strength to develop boundaries that you clearly state to your ex. Be firm and consistent. Do not have fear of falling back into the place where your mind will start manipulating you into thinking that you are fragile or that you can be broken by your ex playing his old tricks and drama on your mind- instead be cautious and when you recognise this behaviour of your ex you take it in and instantly filter it and do not hold onto it ,but instead throw it back at him;) after all- your ex will be giving you the ideas of what’s bothers him and it’s e a you what you need in order to fight your ex with his own weapon- if he is horrible to you- you must try your best and be at least twice as bad towards him-, lol
    It be at the beginning something new to them,as the time be passing by it be something that it starts playing on their mind- the emotions of enjoyment which they will feel out of that game of exchanging energies when interacting in that way will dissapear at some point and you will acknowledge that your ex is irritable with your constant strength and ability to answer back to him;)…, by that time you be actually more or less get idea of how this process is actually working and you will see him becoming uneasy and angry due to only one reason – that he is no longer able to have you where he wants you to be i his life or to see you falling for his games.
    If you want him to stop abusing your personal space and respect you and your decisions ,it’s crucial that you show him that he was mistaken thinking that he got any kind of power over you ,and to make him understand that he no longer can treat you as a victim of the way he used to be- it be braking point,when he will see you standing firmly your grounds and laughing at his face and basicly verbally make him looks ridiculous as you be aloud expressing your opinion about the way he is behaving towards you or about certain situation- that will make him confused , but be aware that it also can cause him throwing a war at your direction- all that you must remember to do at this time is to turn your back towards him and simply ignore him:) it will strengthen the feelings( inside of himself ) of insecurity . Hat time his frustration will most likely reach the braking point and as he will no longer be able to manipulate you in the way which he used to/ there be most likely the decission that he will take at this stage and he will move his attention from your person towards looking his next victim:)
    Good luck

  • June 13, 2016 at 5:48 pm

    “Good luck to me and you, tortured by the tortured we love with all our heart and souls.”
    Beautiful. And same to you!! <3

  • June 13, 2016 at 1:39 pm

    Have you heard of Melanie Tonia Evans? She has really helpful courses on healing from narcissistic abuse. Highly recommend it! Best

  • June 13, 2016 at 1:31 pm

    Ok so you’re one case where the guy has a bit of hope. Most psychopaths don’t and they are ok with this behavior and all the lies. They feel nothing unless it benefits them.

  • March 4, 2016 at 12:13 am

    Anyways, divorced and happily remarried to a man who truly adores me, who sacrifices for me and I for him, who is truly my best friend. It’s possible to find someone who treats you like a real person, not to be toyed with. My three kids are doing well, but it’s impossible to not have contact as Stuck suggested. I am learning to rise above the craziness and stick to business. He is terrible but I keep honest and never say anything about him to the kids. I try to create as much calm as I can as a buffer to his chaos. Good luck!

  • March 4, 2016 at 12:09 am

    This message is for Stuck and for ET 73 and any other women out there who feel crazy because their ex husband is a narcissistic you know what. I was married for 20 years and had three children with my ex. He blamed all of his problems on the rest of the world, including his inability to get a decent job with a PHd. Unable to work for anybody, he went into business with his family, the only one’s who could tolerate him. I managed, in the end, to put every feeling or need I had to the back, becoming kind of an automaton, telling myself that I could stay there and love him because if anyone could have the wherewithal to hold the family together and sacrifice, it would be me. I got sick enough to land me in the hospital and it was entirely stress related. I’d wake up every morning and the room would spin, I’d throw up, I’d get a migraine. Never was he happier then when I needed him like that and was isolated. I couldn’t believe it was stress until my doctor gave me the medicines and they finally kicked in.

  • February 6, 2016 at 8:15 pm

    Her article is EXACT and thoroughly accurate!!! I’ve been involved with 3 men over a 30 year period who are completely narcissistic, manipulative and sociopathic!!! This makes me an expert. It is amazing to me how the brain so intricately rewires itself to protect against trauma and abuse. I have so much love and empathy for these men who I know want so much to be good people, but can’t feel empathy properly or consistently and are victim to their moods and lack of understanding of why they behave the way they do. I also mourn for the whole me, before I met them. I am very broken now and haling is agony. Good luck to me and you, tortured by the tortured we love with all our heart and souls.

  • February 6, 2016 at 8:11 pm

    Her comments are EXACT and apply totally and thoroughly to the 3 last men I’ve been with for over 30 years now. I believe that makes me an expert. I need to figure out how on earth and why I’m attracted to and attract these personality issues!!!

  • February 3, 2016 at 6:21 am

    Pat… Hi my name is Connie and I am now finally divorcing a narcissist of 28yrs. This is the fifth time I’ve left and moved out and the third that attorneys were hired. I will never go back to that abuse ever ever again and I wish now I would have fo)owed through any one of the times as I have so much regret and anger as I wish I would be a seen this … But I did! Just never knew he would get worse and devalue me to say the little.

  • February 2, 2016 at 11:17 am

    Any advice for someone court ordered to endure a socio and share a child 50/50 with them? No contact is not an option.

  • January 29, 2016 at 11:42 am

    YES! YES! …and YES! to this article. I was with a man for nearly 10 years that made me feel like I was going out of my mind about 99% of the time. But for some reason I stuck around, thinking that I could change him. I finally had enough, started making plans to leave, and that’s when the REAL drama began! Drama that had me locked out of the home that I was paying for (because he couldn’t hold a steady job) and ostracized by our friends. Within a matter of days of me leaving the picture, he had his current female “friend” spending the night with him….and yet somehow, I was the one with the problem (doesn’t EVERY guy have a female friend who stops by only when you’re at work and calls after you’ve gone to bed!?!?)

    For years, I was accused of being too sensitive and manufacturing drama….but, low and behold, I was right the whole time.

    Ladies – you can’t fix him/her! Get away while you still have a shred of sanity left!

  • January 27, 2016 at 2:09 am

    we have custody of my nieces and nephew and this is their mom. Unfortunately she can’t love so it’s very hard to maintain any relationship when she keeps hurting her kids. Also she is on drugs and did a deal in front of our home so she is no longer aloud here. there is so much confusion because it’s like you love someone who doesn’t love you back and I mean a family type of love but the things they do make you strongly dislike them.

    Rose, that’s exactly how my nieces and nephew were treated

  • January 26, 2016 at 11:35 pm

    It is very hard to imagine that a person can be all of this…. until you meet one. I now have one that unfortunately will be a part of my life for years and years. It is very apparent that no communication at all is the best way to keep yourself from being a pawn in one of their plans.

    In my case the individual uses her children as the pawns to manipulate everyone. It is absolutely heart shattering the complete loss of love and compassion that she displays and yet she will say that it is everyone else that is heartless and evil.

    I fear for those kids. I can see the pain that they must go through each day just walking on eggshells in hopes of keeping the wrath at bay. 🙁

  • January 26, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    NOT true…. My boy friend suffered and still suffers from time to time. Yes he doesn’t fully understand emotion and he’s not an open hearted person but that DOES NOT mean he doesn’t feel love and does not show emotion. It takes time, we’ve been together for three years and yea for the first year I didn’t get any affection but I didn’t give up either. Reason why it was so hard is because he’s parents and step parents didn’t show him love! People like y’all didn’t show him love friends DID NOT SHOW HIM LOVE. It’s sad y’all don’t think you can love a person like so because you can and when they finally show emotion and love towards you it’s an amazing thing

  • January 26, 2016 at 2:28 pm

    That isn’t a psychopath, that’s a narcissist and/or sociopath as the title of the article suggest. There’s a huge difference. A psychopath couldn’t be bothered with all the mind games. They literally don’t feel and therefore do not need a narcissistic supply – nor do they care who’s on what side of the argument. Psychopaths don’t waste their time on crazy-making tactics.

  • January 26, 2016 at 8:35 am

    Sounds like you are bitter from a bad emotional or psychological experience with someone describing the traits above.

    All of those things described can be subject to the so called ‘victims’ interpretation of the situation and in no way is a accurate way to depict the behavioural characteristics of an individual.

  • January 26, 2016 at 1:45 am

    My ex’s in-laws with the exception of the father-in-law would fit into this nicely.

  • January 26, 2016 at 1:40 am

    Give your love and energy to someone deserving instead.

  • January 26, 2016 at 12:22 am

    this is how for 36 years I was treated finally leaving the situation and having charges layed then like a fool returned only to find out things would never change so left again. still have doubts at times but trying to stay strong I want my life back

  • January 26, 2016 at 12:18 am

    The author of the article seems to think all psychopaths are 15 on a scale of 1 to 10. If your psychopath is a 3 or 4, love them and stick by them if you want to. We’re all being pushed to think everyone with a label is the worse possible extreme of that label. While I agree a level 15 psychopath may never love you, a level 2 may be able to provide all the love you need — depending on what label you have and where you’re on that 1-10 scale.

  • January 25, 2016 at 8:07 pm

    Why would you want to?

  • January 25, 2016 at 6:26 pm

    They lack conscience and empathy, making them manipulative, volatile and often (but by no means always) criminal.

    Everyone does deserve to be loved, but unless you’re willing to sacrifice your own safety and/or sanity, the best way to love a psychopath is from afar. Because they have no regard for how their actions impact others (and there’s no way to change it), you’ll never be romantically loved back. You’ll be a pawn in a game of power.


  • January 25, 2016 at 4:33 am

    I understand what you are saying, but… don’t psychopaths deserve to be loved, too?
    Is there any way to maintain a romantic relationship with one?

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