How does a narcissist react when they can’t control you?

We sometimes include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Read our affiliate disclosure.


Narcissists can be very controlling; so much so that it often feels like you have no freedom in your relationship. 

But what happens when you stand up to them and take back control? Do they run away, cower in the corner, or something even more sinister?

Narcissists are not inherently bad people; their behaviors just come from an inability to see past their own wants and needs. 

Here are 9 ways a narcissist reacts when they can’t control you

1) They play the victim role.

This is one of the classic narcissist tactics. They will play the victim and say that you are being controlling and mean. 

Narcissists are highly manipulative and love to be on top; if they are not threatening you or putting you down, they are making up stories about how you are mistreating them. 

They will claim that you are the one who doesn’t have time for them, and it’s your fault for “proving them right” about you not being able to be in a healthy relationship with someone else. 

They will guilt-trip you into making apologies for “getting upset” or “hurting their feelings.”

When you finally take back the control in your relationship, They may put themselves in a position of pity by trying to make you feel guilty for “abandoning” them. 

They might say that you don’t value them, or how horrible it is that you would do this after all they’ve done for you. They whine about how you are mistreating them.

They act like if everyone would just stop getting in their way, everything would be great.

2) They will be more devious

Since narcissists can’t control you anymore, they will have to get creative if they want to change the way things are. 

They will pretend that they want a break for a while so that they can figure out what went wrong and make it right again. 

They act in ways that get what they want, regardless of how they may seem to others. They are very intelligent, which is why their deviousness can be so powerful. 

And you know what?

If you are standing up for yourself, they will start getting more aggressive and sneakier about it.

They could start using blackmail or threats of violence to manipulate and control you. They will manipulate you with guilt or make you feel like the one at fault.

They may tell others about your bad behavior and spread rumors about you, or blame it on you being a bad person. 

They will begin to blame everyone else and anything that happens in their life on you, because it doesn’t fit into their worldview of all is your fault.

3) Have you ever been to a psychic?

Until two months ago, my answer would have been no. 

But when I came face-to-face with issues related to how a narcissist reacts when they can’t control you I decided to think out of the box. 

Even though I was skeptical about psychics and their knowledge on love, I gave the folks at Psychic Source a try. 

It’s one of the best decisions I made. 

The advisor I spoke to was kind, understanding, and genuinely helpful.

My love reading helped me understand where I was going wrong in my love life and how to fix it. 

Click here to try it out.

They are incredibly knowledgeable about how a narcissist reacts when they can’t control you, and can tell you how to reach your romantic destiny right away.

4) They will give you the silent treatment

You may have never seen this one coming!

Narcissists feel that they are entitled to everything, and they don’t try to understand why people may be upset with them. 

So when you begin standing up for yourself, they will get even more furious. They feel like you are stealing their power and making them look bad.

They may threaten to leave or work more things out on their own. They could suddenly become “unavailable” when you have reached the point of no return in your relationship if they think they can pull it off. 

They may sabotage your plans or say they are too tired to talk right now. When you try to discuss their issues, they won’t engage with you at all (they say they don’t want to discuss things) and let you know that they’re not mad at you but just not in the mood.

They will keep their distance and tune you out when you have reached that point, rather than risk losing control over you again.

5) They’ll humiliate you

Narcissists have poor boundaries. They may be very aggressive and relentless with their behavior, which can lead to you falling out of control. 

It’s like you have never done anything wrong, but they will say that you did. 

That’s right!

They will claim that everyone is talking about you in ways you don’t even realize, and it’s all true. 

They make the entire world out to be against you, and everything is about them. They will tell lies about you in front of people to mock your character or make others laugh at your expense.

They may criticize your job or start to undermine everything you are trying to accomplish or use other people against you. 

They might harass you at work or refuse to talk about the relationship anymore, even going so far as to sabotage it.

6) They’ll start up a smear campaign against you

If a narcissist can’t control you, they will resort to any dirty trick to keep you from doing what you want.

They will make your life a living hell by spreading rumors about you to your friends and family, or even to complete strangers. 

They may try to accuse your friends or family of things that are untrue. They may try to make it look like everything is your fault and that they are the victim. They may even spread lies about others in your life.

They may start spreading rumors about you or badmouthing your character and behavior, whether real or not.

For instance:

They may start a rumor about you being in a relationship with more than one person.

They will spread stories about every aspect of your life, so that everyone knows who the bad person is. 

This can be especially humiliating if it’s completely false and other people believe the lie.

7) They will stalk you

Narcissists will want to be in control, even when they can’t be. So they will be persistent, and even if they have to stalk you in a devious way, they will do it.

Narcissists will go to great lengths to prove that they are in control of you.

Narcissists will follow you to places where you go alone, or they might secretly place unwanted phone calls and texts in an effort to harass and control you. 

They have no problem spying on your activities and communicating with you when they are not together. 

Trust me!

They are good at this; so it can go on for months or even years without them realizing. 

They may show up at your house unannounced and try to start a fight over what you did wrong in the relationship.

They may start posting things that make fun of you or similar things.

They might follow you around and escort you on your way out at the end of the day or start a social media campaign about you and call your friends or family members, saying that they have made up a rumor about you. 

And you know what?

Love rarely runs on time. 

And even when it shows up, you often get hit with sudden surprises and nasty twists and turns. 

That’s why I decided to speak to one of the gifted people at Psychic Source

As I said earlier, they actually helped me a lot. 

The particular issue of how a narcissist reacts when they can’t control you didn’t faze them at all. 

They can help you in text chat, a call or a video call and it costs much less than you might think. 

Click here to get your personalized love reading.

8) They will go into denial mode

Narcissists are not good at facing reality. This is because in their world, they are the center of everything. 

So rather than come to terms with that, they will deny it and do everything they can to turn the tables. They may seem like nothing has changed in their relationship, when in fact it has completely changed. 

When you disagree with a narcissist, they may flat out deny that it’s even happening. They will say that you are lying and that there is nothing that they would need to change. 

They may try to put the blame on you for everything that is going wrong and act like every problem was your fault in order to control you again.

They will tell themselves that the reasons you are upset with them is all in your head because there is no way that they could be at fault or be abusing you.

They will tell themselves that you are crazy and making things up, even when you have evidence and log statements to prove what they did.

They might even get so angry that they may explode and hold a grudge against you for no reason at all. They might not communicate with you for months or even years, refusing to answer your texts or calls.

9) They will find another partner as “a new supply”

If a narcissist is broken up with and finds another partner, they will make sure that they use this new person to get revenge on you.

Narcissists do not want to be alone. So they will go to any means necessary to get another partner, even if it means mistreating their current partner. 

They don’t want someone who is going to take their power away and make them look bad. They will find a new relationship and leave you in order to “start over” or feel better about themselves again. 

They may use sex as a way of getting attention, using new partners so that they can feel desirable again.

You must be aware of this fact!

They are unpredictable and always doing this, so they may just one day show up with a new partner in their life without telling you. This person is likely to be a rebound or replacement partner (though they should know better!).

They will tell the new person all of your secrets, even if they don’t want to hear it. They may tell them everything, and you will be in the dark about it. 

They are especially good at using people against you if they have no friends or family of their own.

10) They will do everything to break your confidence

Narcissists know everything about you, and if there are things that you are insecure about, they will use it to their advantage. 

Narcissists prey on people who have low self worth and keep control of them by making them doubt themselves. 

They may tell you what other people think about you so that you doubt your decisions or feel insecure about yourself. They love to make others feel bad for them, so they will do whatever it takes to put doubts in your head and break your confidence.

When narcissistic people cannot control you, they will do everything they can to break your confidence. They want to make sure that you will no longer be able to trust yourself with making your own decisions in life. 

Narcissists don’t want you to be happy. They want you to doubt yourself and feel bad about yourself so that they can control you. 

Some narcissists will tell you that you can never live up to their standards, or tell you that you are not good enough for them. 

They may also spread rumors about your personal life and make it seem like everything is your fault.

They will test you over and over again. They will try to provoke you or make mistakes, in an effort to get the upper hand and have all of the fun by themselves.


You must be aware that people like this are always trying to break you down and control you. Don’t ever let someone else play with your health, self esteem, or your joy.

Be happy!

Don’t let anyone else make or break you!

In conclusion

Know that you deserve better and that there is a difference between constructive criticism, and destructive criticism.

If you ever are in a relationship with someone who has narcissistic tendencies, be sure to know when to walk away from it. 

There are always ways out of these toxic relationships! 

Just keep in mind that narcissists don’t want you to be happy. They will try their best to control you and keep you under them because they need someone else to feel satisfied.

This article gives you a lot of insight into how a narcissist reacts when they can’t control you?. But understanding an issue can be just the beginning. 

I mentioned Psychic Source earlier. I recommended them because of my own positive experience, and I’m optimistic they can do the same for you. 

Their spiritual advisors understand an enormous amount about how a narcissist reacts when they can’t control you and how to address it. 

Click here to get your own love reading.

Can a relationship coach help you too?

If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to a relationship coach.

I know this from personal experience…

A few months ago, I reached out to Relationship Hero when I was going through a tough patch in my relationship. After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship and how to get it back on track.

If you haven’t heard of Relationship Hero before, it’s a site where highly trained relationship coaches help people through complicated and difficult love situations.

In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice for your situation.

I was blown away by how kind, empathetic, and genuinely helpful my coach was.

Click here to get started.