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Why is the narcissist so controlling? (30 DAYS OF NARCISSISM) – Dr. Ramani Durvasula


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  • M K

    WOW this hit home! Very early on, he suggested we have location sharing on our phones and I fell right into it thinking this was a sure sign of his love and commitment. I was almost flattered by this. I now know better.

  • Susan

    Thank you Dr. Ramani, you are helping so many people…empowering us! I have an entire family of cluster B….my Dad was overt malignant sociopath and so is my older sister. My mother and my dad's mother are covert narcissists. The only way to diagnose these people is through videos like this, they will NEVER go to therapy. I was told that sociopaths only partner with a codependent, not another narcissist. But that's not true, my mother is a covert narc. She has all these traits you are describing and she very abusive and controlling. Very manipulating and cruel. The covert is the worst kind in my opinion, they are most dangerous because you won't realize what you entered into. They can disguise themselves much better than the overt and they love to punish, only you won't know your being punished, you'll just experience the pain and suffering but not realize it's all very deliberate. I'm 47 now and I wish I had all this info when I was young. It was never talked about with no info on this whatsoever. It pains me to say this, but my parents did not love me, they actually hated me and wanted to destroy me. There is no greater pain than that. All the men I dated and married were covert narcissists. The worst kind because they can be harder to detect but very very damaging. I recognize the pattern I was in and only now that I'm so informed and educated on this disorder can I protect myself and free myself of any guilt from having to cut contact. Nor will I ever enter another relationship with one. I can spot them now!! I thank God I survived and most importantly I did not become one myself. I care so much for others, I am very empathic and have much love in my heart. They did not win or distinguish my light from within. I will save my love and kindness for those that are deserving. You can never make a narc happy. They are bottomless pits, miserable, empty, loathing, jealous and full of hate. The world needs to be informed about this evil creature. Yes, my family are very evil. Hope God is more forgiving than me for their sake.

  • Ms. Leo

    Watching these videos I’m more than sure that my supervisor was a narcissist! And he had a crush on me too and he would always control what I was doing , going or what I did. But I didn’t see it until years later. He fit every one of these videos. Crazy!!!!

  • Lady Odessa Von Rothbart

    Controlling that you just mention was my son of a bitch FATHER! I hate that shithead to the core, he doesn't care about you acheiving your goals or inheriting money from a rich aunt rather decides to keep me a dependent of his and trap me in his life. That all changed when I told him to FUCK OFF in 2014 living in SF when he was expecting me back in Kuwait. I feel like sueing him $10,000,000 if I could find a way but that fucking narcissist is also a man with power and gas lighter😡😡😡😡 I pray he dies and my mother bares me good news of his demise so I could inherit everything that is rightfully MINE🤲🙏🙌 His money is the only fortune I need to live off of as a former upperclassman.

  • Nancy Suver

    My narcissistic ex husband constantly texts my kids to the point of harrassing them causing them anxiety and stress.
    He ramps it up especially when he knows they are with me . If they don’t answer right away he responds with “hello” Over and over. He controls ,manipulates ,and isolates them using money as well as bribery ,threats, insults, and strings attached always

  • shaveer Love

    After the 2nd hoover my Narc cause she didn't want to get in trouble with Work cause i made prior complaints she insisted on using Snapchat and she said that if if she saw that I saved any of them she would never Talk to me again…..I was so Pathetic…..Never again..

  • Vhonda C.

    Thank you Dr Ramani. Good video again. I was on my wife's daughter and son in law plan. I knew they probably were tracking me so I smashed the phone, soaked it in water and low and behold the very next day they wanted the phone back….lol. They got it back after I did a factory reset on it. And even after all the smashing and soaking in water that darn thing still turned on. I have my own phone now and my own plan but I don't know if a tracker is on the car. That really bugs me.

  • soheila y

    My classmate was a narcissist. One of the things that i desided to do was that i started to talk less. I was at a point that i couldn’t talk to my husband, because i always told to myself “do not talk, you make things worse”.I can not trust people anymore. I thought bullies were just in schools, turns out they are in universities too, they’re everywhere.

  • Wild Bird

    Mine controlled me by with holding sex for years. And through very passive aggressive behavior. What ever I wanted, he made sure I didn't get. Very covert control, because he had a million excuses as to why this or why that, so there was always plausible deniability. If he had done the things discussed in this video I would have left sooner. That many texts a day is insane and obviously is disturbing.

  • D Kirk

    Well…women can be just as controlling. Has nothing to do with gender at all. I have been married to a female Cover Narcissist for a long time. She controls her money and did as she saw fit. She expected me to be accountable and completely transparent about how I spent my money.

    A complete double standard.

  • Mariel Fernandez

    I was married to a narcissists and he had trackers in my car and Spyware on my phone he would listen to my conversations and take pictures with my phone from his office.. The Spyware is called Cerberus.. Is a ghost app it will never show you its installed on your phone.. The only way to get rid of it is to do a factory reset.. He would also get get messages everytime I drove in and out of work and in and out of my house.. He would drop pins into the car tracker and it would send him a text every time the car crossed those marks.. That's without even mentioning he would call me and text me non stop about what I was doing or where was I going..

  • Rod Morrison

    Controlling behavior is the darker side of any relationship, but this is a sliding scale. Some are more controlling than others and in different areas. My ex-wife was off the scale controlling…tried to control the clothes that I wore (but I want you to look good honey) to the point it almost became a uniform. Being a back seat driver… telling me where to turn, how fast or slow to go, where to park in a parking lot when shopping. That alone is exhausting, but then the "family" phone plan and GPS tracking kicked in with the unlimited texting and always monitored my text messages and who I was calling and who called me,, and if I did not answer a phone call from her…there was a call every 30 secs for the next two hours or more, untill I did answer. She always had input as to when I could or should work. She could be in a Alaska or 3 states away for 6 months assignments and I would be at home. My job as a manager, there are times when I would have to cover for someone or fix an emergency…and would be made to feel guilty for doing my job.
    There were many other areas of the control that became too exhausting along with the deep insecurities very toxic.

  • Cedric Hawkins

    The Narcissistic personalities start at the onset of the relationship With the controlling tactics. You are a possession not a mate or better half. The main goal in all they do is to get control and keep control at all costs.

  • Nancy Luckhurst

    My spouse is controlling and some of the things he tries to control are crazy.

    He wants to dictate which TV shows are "worthwhile", frowns upon breakfast in pjs, always insists every illness requires exercise to recover instead of rest, preaches about calories in food and carbs in particular, tells me how to do the laundry and hang up clothes "properly" ( as if I don't know), doesn't like me to open doors too often as they will "wear out", wants a clean towel put down on top of a bath mat outside the shower so the bath mat will stay clean when you step out, doesn't like me to go barefoot indoors…and much, much more. And yet, surprise, surprise, I am the one regularly accused of being controlling.

  • S T

    Wow this hit home. My mother used my fathers trust to puppeteer everyone in the family. She is in her 70’s and getting sued for fraud,conversion,forgery and much more. She wrecked my Fathers life and everyone else’s. She is also the typical hypocritical Christian covert Narc. What a nightmare. I will be glad when she is deep in the ground.

  • anna neumann

    So important.

    A suitably reverent partner will not mind you investing your safety in their participation hesitantly, screeningly, gradually.. and strategic(al?)ly, even when you are very, very emotionally invested in one another.

    It actually shows more love for them to want you to have the safest boundaries with them. What if an elephant were to step on them (so to speak) & the next person simulated the same relationship very skillfully but was really malicious & about to drop the other shoe?.. A wise person doesn't take these boundaries personally & in fact wants them for everyone & especially the people in whose wellbeing they are most particularly emotionally invested.

  • No mo narcs

    This is the dark characteristic. My friends would always say that I was lucky that my husband called me so much but I always knew something wasn’t right. The technology part is why he handled all the computer and phone matters. He made sure they were always updated. Now that I know he is sick, I don’t care because I have one foot out the door and another on a banana peel

  • JD Connie

    Wow. I experienced a lot of this behavior. I didn’t everything in my power to get out from under. He put trackers on my phone. Keyloggers on my computer, would follow me and then text messages letting me know what I was doing. He lied about our finances took a life insurance out on me without my knowledge. Would control my cancer treatment to the nth degree. When I finally got strong enough physically I filed and got out of his personal hell he lives in. I want to emphasize that this is done very covertly and over time especially in a marriage in which one partner is the bread winner and the other is the primary caregiver for children and aging family members. Sayanara. It’s not only about text messages. The osiolation from grounding relationships is very unsettling when you look back.

  • Doppelgänger

    My ex-shrink used meds for control & punishment. 🤯 He also slept with his patients; I escaped that one even though he drugged me with 4 different sleep meds at the same time! Last added was Seroquel – was not psychotic & it had weird sexual side effects. Took myself off that PDQ; read him the riot act & never returned. Weaned myself off all his other prescriptions & am feeling close to my old self even though I think my brain chemistry is permanently messed up. Wish I had the strength to take him to court.

    IMHO he is a Covert Narcissist to the Nth degree.

  • Rachel M

    My ex narcissist electronically tracked me on our company’s instant messaging software that was also connected to our daily calendar. If I was away from my desk for more than 10 minutes or left early, he either called or texted asking where I was and what was I doing. It freaked him out if I didn’t give him a heads up and I was subsequently punished for my insubordination…

    One other major tactic he used to control, and I’ve seen this in others, is that they will intentionally make you late for anything that has to do with you, specifically or it’s something that you’re excited to do or are interested in. He was never late for anything that had to do with him, ever, but when it came time for us to leave to attend something related to me, suddenly he couldn’t find the car keys (which were suspiciously missing from the key holder on the wall as you entered our apartment), he would start a fight out of nowhere, he couldn’t find his phone (always in his pocket to keep me from noticing his messages with members of his harem), his socks suddenly didn’t match even though he was completely anal about dressing impeccably in designer fashions only. By being late, they demean you, disrespect you, they’re not dependable, they’re unsupportive, they cross your boundaries, create undo stress, make you look foolish and can even jeopardize your financial security if you’re late for work or office functions. The motivations behind their behaviors are insidious.

  • Mary Pickford

    I call it “textual harassment”. I set the bar extremely high in this aspect. No over texting. I won’t respond for days or hours. They get the gist. I’m not going to keep my present held hostage responding to someone who isn’t there. My life isn’t a play by play.

  • loughrey101

    They're all typically overt examples of control but others can be more covert and indirect manipulation techniques to control your decision and force you to do something so the narcissist can make you do things you don't want by making you aware that there are serious consequences for not doing it. My narcisstic partner would keep trying to use me for money so she'd use my feelings for her to blackmail me by reminding me that there are other men, including her ex who is waiting in the sidelines to take my place, who wants to tak on this role and that if I don't tow the line she will invite those guys into the relationship and make it an open relationship. She'd tell me I should feel privileged that she's always asking me for money because she has other options but chooses to ask me because I'm her man. So I was given no choice to say no or say I'm not financially able to right now and was made to feel scared of the consequences of saying no. Ultimately she discarded me when I began to question things and resist giving in. At the beginning it was more a jealousy control where she wouldn't let me adding females on Facebook, wouldn't let me talk to women, even longterm female friends, but as time went by she dropped that and focused on financial control.

  • KT Whimsy

    One of the 1st red flags (of many!) that I ignored/justified/rationalized in my mind: we had only been dating for a couple months, and I voiced concern that because he was 3 years younger than myself, I worried that me being a single mom of 2 young boys might be too much responsibility for him… his reply was “I actually love that you are a single mom because I don’t have to worry about what you’re doing when I’m not here – I know you can’t just leave your kids in bed and go out, so I know where you are on Friday nights” — YIKES. I should have run for the hills right then! 😳🙅‍♀️

  • KT Whimsy

    Oof, my ex also tried to convince me that wearing makeup proved I was “insecure” and had low self esteem – because in his mind, women only try to look good to attract male attention… he refused to believe that a woman (me, in this case) would want to look good for herself. It got to the point that I’d be questioned for putting on mascara before going on a coffee run – I must be flirting with the barista…

  • Jean Butler

    Thank you. You hit the nail on the head regarding vacations. That's when I realized something was very wrong with my sister and my mother. My sister needed to control every aspect of the vacation and I said no and did some things on my own. My sister was infuriated. I had also learned many years later that she was very angry that my husband and I ate without her while we were on different vacation. I knew my sister was controlling, but I didn't really know to what degree until those vacations. I am no contact with both my sister and mother now, not due to just the vacations, but other things have come to light.

    Thanks again for this video.

  • Gwen13061

    The control goes way beyond having to know where you are all the time. What about having to control the environment for someone else by boundary crossing such as turning on a light in the room or controlling the temperature for another person because they feel that it would be better for that other person even if the Other person tells them not to. Or how ‘bout gaslighting someone’s internal perceptions to gain control or dominance (that’s really scary and twisted)

  • Cal EuXX

    Dr. Ramani – question. The types of controlling behavior you describe, that can also be preformed by codependents, right? The active manipulative type of codependent, who tries to take care of everything and save everyone?

  • Anne Whitley

    My boyfriend’s mother is a narcissist and we made the mistake of moving in with her. In the beginning she would text us both back to back constantly asking “where are you? What are you doing?” And when ignored she would go into a rage and trash us on Facebook. After gray rocking her she began playing games. She kept making up new rules and then eventually made sure we stayed in our room when she’s home. She watches our every move and shows up at my job. For awhile she kept trying to get my boyfriend on her phone plan😒 I am so glad he knew that was a bad idea! I knew she wanted control. When we don’t answer her or do what she wants we get threatening texts. It’s insanity and we despise her. (Yes we are moving soon!!)

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