Charlie and Monica had been together several months and Monica was still going to dinner with other men on a regular basis. Despite wanting Charlie to put a ring on her finger, Monica did not understand why Charlie had an issue with the fact that she needed to have dinner with other men once or twice a week. She told him if she didn’t continue to see these other men, whom she swore were just friends, she would feel smothered and stifled by him.
Not only did she expect him to accept this without question, but he was never invited to join these dinners. For almost 8 months, Charlie put up with Monica going out to dinner in NYC with other men, most of whom she once dated and were obviously attempting to win her over.
Monica had achieved the narcissist's dream of having a rotation of admirers available to her at her disposal and wasn’t willing to give it up for Charlie. We often think of men having a harem, but female narcissists are notorious for having a very large circle of men doting on them at all times. When a narcissist gets in a committed relationship, she has a very hard time giving this up and often, as was the case with Monica, may not give it up for anyone.
Today’s technological age makes it very easy for narcissists to create a large circle of admirers (i.e. supply). Some create relationships with people in other cities or states because it is very easy to hide a relationship like this from their significant other. I know of many female narcissists who claim to go on business trips only to be found visiting another member of their harem.
Long-Distance Relationships (LDRs) are perfect for narcissists who thrive on having a large source of supply available to them at all times. A narcissist’s ego is so fragile that it can never be satiated by just one person. A narcissist requires a plethora of supply and if they’re not up-front with you about it, as Monica was with Charlie, they will hide it from you.
Another person often found in the narcissist’s “rotation of others” is the on-line admirer who is even easier to hide and provides just the right amount of ego-stroking when needed. Narcissists often prefer LDRs and On-Line Relationships because they provide validation without much effort and require little to no intimacy, which is something the narcissist dreads.
Narcissists also prefer these types of relationships because they feel it gives them the right to demand lots of sexting. Because narcissists are very auto-erotic (prefer masturbation to intimacy), they often find the LDR or On-Line Relationship to be a dream come true. They are easy to hide and require NO intimacy or effort, yet provide plenty of validation for their fragile ego!
Monica wanted Charlie to propose. She had reached her forties and was ready to procreate and behold a mini version of herself. Charlie is a successful attorney who could provide the kind of life she wanted and she knew this. Monica was putting the pressure on to get married, but Charlie was understandably hesitant due to the rotation of men she insisted on having in her life. Ultimately, the relationship ended because Monica was not willing to give up her circle of men and Charlie knew he deserved more.
I coached Charlie through this break-up and am proud of him for doing the right thing. Despite knowing in his gut that she was wrong, it took him a long time to fully believe it, which just goes to show how easily the narcissist brainwashes us into accepting less than we deserve. No one should put up with this kind of selfish behavior, but the narcissist is so covert, charming and manipulative that they are often able to cause us to doubt ourselves to the point that we do accept way less than we should.
“Never allow someone to be your priority while allowing yourself to be their option.”
- Mark Twain