Why The Narcissist Makes Your Going Out Such A Battle



This article analyses the thoughts and motivations adopted by the narcissist with regard to your going out socially.

This thought process is most applicable to Lesser and Mid Range Narcissists and the conversational example is most applicable to a Mid Range Narcissist.

We do not like you to socialise without us. Why would you want to be anywhere other than by our side marvelling at how brilliant we are? Why on earth would you want to spend time with someone who is clearly inferior to us? What are you up to by going out with someone else? You are clearly being disloyal and that does not please us. Moreover, you are not providing us with any fuel by asserting some form of independence and that is a terrible and selfish thing for you to do.

If you are going out with others, this will cause wounding to the narcissist. We do not like you to spend time with other people since we fear that they exert some malign influence over you. We know they will be trying to undermine us in your eyes and turn you against us. We know it is because they are jealous of what we have together and rather than be pleased for you, they are smearing my good name.

You want to listen to them as well, otherwise why would you be going? Our careful and structured control of you, our calculated isolation of you, all stand to be damaged by your socialising with those who we have not got control over. We tried but for some reasons there are two or three of your friends who proved immune to our charm. I should feel sorry for them since they are selfish, bitter and twisted, but I don’t feel sorry for them because I don’t feel sorry do I, only for myself. I want you with me, where I can keep an eye on you and control you. I want you here where you are supplying me with fuel. This is your rightful place and by organising to go out for your meal with these friends you are telling me that I am not good enough to spend time with. You are criticising me and that wounds me. I have to stop you wounding me. I have to stop you going. I have to maintain the upper hand. Thus because of your selfish behaviour the Battle of Going Out is joined.

This battle embraces :-

  1. A Preventative Hoover to halt the victim from doing something else. The doing of something else makes the narcissist feel like he does not have control and therefore the act of going elsewhere will wound, cause the ignition of fury and the response is designed to stop you going out and thus is a Preventative Hoover.
  2. If you still endeavour to depart but respond in a hurt, argumentative, frustrated etc manner you are providing the narcissist with Challenge Fuel. There is no longer any wounding (because fuel is being provided) BUT your desire to depart combined with your emotional response is the Challenge Fuel. The narcissist must instinctively respond with manipulations to put ‘down’ this ‘rebellion’ by you.
  3. Fuel is of course acquired. Negative in nature.
  4. Should you not go out, the potential wounding does not occur. Furthermore, if you back down and do not argue, fight against our influence, you are no longer giving Challenge Fuel. If you sit crying, this is Pure Negative Fuel. If you smile and decide you would rather stay in with us and be pleasant then this is Pure Positive Fuel.

Here comes the exchange. It contains a number of manipulations by the narcissist – see if you can identify them.

“You never said that you were going out,” I begin as I see you getting ready in the bathroom. You halt applying your make-up and turn to me.

“Yes I did, I told you last week and again this morning.”

“No you didn’t.”

“Yes I did, I remember.”

“No you did not. I would have remembered if you had told me,” I answer.

” I put it on the calendar.” You walk to the kitchen and return holding a calendar with the words ‘Girls meal out – Leonardos’.

“See?” you ask and jab a finger at the words.

“That? I thought that was referring to your nieces, not you, you never said.”

“Seriously? Come on, why would my nieces be going to Leonardo’s on their own?” you ask.

“You’ve just written that in when you were fetching the calendar. Look, the ink is still drying.”

You sigh in exasperation.

“I told you about it, it is in the calendar. I have not been out in weeks.”

“Well neither have I,” I comment.

“What? You were out last Friday,” you answer voice rising.

“That was with work.”

“It was still going out,” you reply.

“That is not the same. You know I have to schmooze clients, it is hardly pleasure. I have to do that for business reasons so I think you are being unfair by saying that is a night out for me.”

“Those clients you were out with are your friends, it was a right piss up.”

“Oh sorry, I forgot, you were there weren’t you, you know all about how I conduct my business don’t you?” I declare.

“No I don’t but they are your friends.”

“So I am not allowed to have clients who are friends now am I? Jesus, why don’t you just stop me from having any friends at all eh? Why not stop me going anywhere? You would like that wouldn’t you? Just having me stuck in here all the time.”

“What are you talking about, I let you do as you please.”

“No you don’t. You are determined to keep me on a leash. My friends take the piss out of me for how little time I get to spend with them.”

You halt your application of the lipstick.

“Who has said that?”

“Several people. Jim, Richard and John. They say I am under the thumb.”

“Huh, they have a cheek, Jim is completely under the thumb of Jessica.”

“No he’s not, but you just change the subject why don’t you. You should be staying in with me you never want to do that anymore.”

“Don’t be silly, I am with you most of the time. Look it is just an informal meal with a few of my friends, it is no big deal.”

“If it is not important then why do you have to go?”

“Because I want to,” you answer.

“Where are you going?”

“You know that Leonardo’s.”

“Really? Who with?”

“Jane, Sarah, Mary and Stephanie, oh and Carrie.”

“I don’t believe you, you have just made that up.”

“What? No I haven’t.”

“You are meeting a man aren’t you? Come on who is it?”

“No you are being stupid.”

“Don’t call me stupid. I am not the one going out and leaving their other half on their own,” I begin to shout and you jolt at the sudden change in volume.

“You are up to something, you have a different perfume on. Who is he?”

“Seriously, you are paranoid, I am meeting the girls.”

“No I am not, who do you think you are saying that to me, you are messing around. I know you are. You have been acting strangely the last few weeks. I know you are. Admit it,” I move towards you and stand over you barking into your face. You back away, eyes widening fearfully.

“I haven’t, honestly, I haven’t.”

“I should let you go anyway you whore, I don’t know why  I bother with you. I was planning a pleasant evening in for us. I was going to cook you your favourite and I have a delicious bottle of Chablis chilling but as usual you are being selfish.”

“Please don’t shout at me, I am just going out with my friends, I am allowed to have some friends aren’t I?”

“Not those harpies, they have it in for me, I hate them. I hate you.”

“Oh please don’t be like that, look I will be back by ten at the latest so we can still have some time together,” you suggest.

“Is that supposed to make me feel pleased? Why would I want to spend time with you, you slut. I see, you want to have your way with him and then rub it in my face. You are such a bitch.”

You have backed away from my tirade, wincing with each bellowed sentence. This allows me to snatch up your clutch bag.

“You can’t go out with no keys and no money,” I say holding the bag aloft.

“Please I only want to see my friends, I rarely see them as it is, please give me my bag back, why are you being so horrible?”

“Because you are cheating on me. I am not having you spend our money on some other man.”

“There is no other man, how many times do I have to tell you? Please let me go.”

“No. You are not going. You are staying here with me.”

“I can’t cancel, not this late,” you say in dejection.

“Of course you can. He does not matter.”

“There is no he. It is the girls.”

“So you say. You are not going. If you do that it is me and you finished.”

“What, just because I want to see my friends?” You slump on to the bed, shoulders hunched and your head in your hands.

“You don’t need them, you have got me.”

“Why does it always have to be like this, every time I try and do something you do this,” you protest and your voice breaks with the first sob of frustration.

“No I don’t stop trying to blame me when you are at fault,” I growl.

“You always do this, make feel guilty or do something to stop me going out.”

“Rubbish, you are making things up again. You are just trying to make me feel bad for you. It won’t work you know that.”

You begin crying as I stand power surging through me.

“Here,” I order as I pull your phone from your bag and throw it down on the bed besides you, ” ring them and tell them you can’t make it, say you don’t feel well or something. I will pour the Chablis.”

Still sobbing you fumble for the phone and pick it up before dialling the number. I stand triumphant drinking deep of the fuel you have given me during this exchange. I have won the battle once again and this time I did not even have to escalate it like I did last time. I suppose that was just as well really seeing as how you had only just replaced those mirrors I smashed.

(The victim’s response is the provision of Pure Negative Fuel through crying, the potential wounding caused by going out has been averted and the Challenge Fuel given during the argument has given way to the Pure Negative Fuel because the narcissist has got his way and his perceived supremacy has been asserted once again – he has control).

The 3 Interactions With the Narcissist

The Narcissist´s 3 Assertions of Control

21 thoughts on “Why The Narcissist Makes Your Going Out Such A Battle

  1. Kerry Pretorius says:

    Been there. Done that. For 25 years with husband #2. Husband #1 controlled my whole life – I was not allowed a key for the house, a key for the car, a bank account, to talk to anyone he did not know, to smile at the sweet girl ringing up the groceries. He died from putting a bullet through his head leaving me a widow and mother at 21. Husband #2 was much better behaved. He manipulated via threat and blustering, and not so much with his fists. I was completely isolated. He accused me a few times of cheating until I told him once that I would have to be completely insane to cheat; I had this much trouble with one man, why on earth would I add another? I left him 3.5 years ago. He still wants me back and tries to talk me into it every few months. We have a teenage son so contact is inevitable. A few weeks ago he asked me come back and said he realised how wrong it was of him to isolate me, to expect me to live the life he wanted. I told him he was correct – it was wrong of him. And I told him the isolation was not why I left; I left because he abused me. I mentioned an instance off the top of my head. His response? “I don’t want to talk about it.” I just shrugged and raised one eyebrow. Neither do I!

  2. December Infinity says:

    I went through that. I went out only a couple of times with friends and then never again. He would always go out and take off for days. I was kept isolated. I never met any of his so-called friends. Most likely as he was off with someone he has been cruising from who knows which dating app or whatever. Eww.

  3. lickemtomorrow says:

    The more a narcissist isolates us, the more control they can apply.

    It’s an insidious thing which we don’t even notice happening. Once the narcissist has achieved their aim in this respect there is less need for such overarching displays of manipulation. This includes determining which friends have the narcissist’s approval (i.e. which friends approve of the narcissist). That will likely keep the narcissist in their comfort zone.

    I imagine this scenario is one which would apply earlier in the narcissistic relationship with the mid ranger. When isolation of the victim is not yet complete and the narcissist has not secured his/her place with regard to friendship groups.

    As the narcissist becomes the victim’s world, there is less and less need to apply this kind of control. The empath will have already chosen to submit to the narcissist’s wishes for the most part and won’t attempt to align themselves with others of which the narcissist does not approve. They want to keep the narcissist happy.

    The subsequent loss of self will hardly be noticeable in the mire of confusion the narcissist sets out to establish.

  4. blackcoffee30 says:

    This can’t be real. OMG this is why I was an IPSS. I only encountered this type of manipulation a couple of times. I feel terribly for all IPPSs enduring this, truly.

  5. duchessbea says:

    Seriously, give me half an hour in the boxing ring with this bloke. No holds barred. I’m in the humour for a good workout. To make it fair I’ll allow him to keep his Cape on. Boxing shorts, gloves. Just me and him. Let’s go.

  6. duchessbea says:

    Asp Emp, when you become aware and sit back and watch people older and much older than yourself there are no words to describe. I could never figure out an uncle (married into the family), just his attitude and the way he behaved for his age. Watching this as a kid and again seeing the behaviour as an adult. Very immature. Only found out about all this two years ago. Makes sense now. Seeing him at family functions, I try to suppress my smile on knowing what he is. Lesser Mid ranger.

    1. Another Cat says:

      They look so much like everyone else, don’t they. It takes me a while when meeting a new group of ppl, to try to spot the narc. (usually the person who greeted me hello and talked to me first)

      1. duchessbea says:

        Another Cat. Very true.

    2. Asp Emp says:

      An interesting point. It’s a bit difficult to do this in my case – trying to spot the narcissist when all there is left of them is a pile of ashes, long gone. Wonder what the reaction would be if you were to leave a book lying around titled “How to spot the Narcissist”. 😉

      1. duchessbea says:

        Put your feet up and get yourself comfortable, have your favourite beverage and sit back and watch. Truthfully though, I don’t think they would think that was them.

        1. Asp Emp says:

          LOL. I think you missed my point – when I say ‘ashes’ they’re dead.

          1. duchessbea says:

            Ahh. Very good.

  7. Natalie says:

    A covert narc I am dealing with was never an obstacle for me to go out. Never tried to ruin my plans, vise versa. But I could feel jealously in his voice even when I spent time with my family. And….. there was always a revenge coming… The longer I was absent, the better time I had the revenge would be more devilish. And then he would help me solve problems he caused… That’s actually how I learned about narcissism …

  8. Asp Emp says:

    Yes. I recognise the ‘objections’ and ‘arguments’ – trying to make me feel that I should not go out later with him and the others that I knew and got on with. Prime example, my 40th birthday. He was being a bully. Again. I ignored him all night. It just added to his anger.

    He was infuriated when I got chatting to some other guy – who actually was a good laugh. We did exchange numbers – because of a ‘trade’ he was in and a useful contact. And, no, this guy & I never ‘crossed the line’ of business as a client / tradesperson.

    The narc was foul towards me. It probably made him more angry when I made it very clear that I was not bothered about his reactions (more than one). He was like a petulant two year old with a tantrum that lasted all weekend.

    Another example, a narcissist got really upset about “being left out” of a meal, when they were not actually at all. They made comments on social media after seeing some information. Someone else replied to the comments to say it was not a social meal for the narcissist to take part. At the time,, I thought it was odd that they were ‘bleating’ about being left out. Looking back, it is apparent of the narcissism in that person. What a spoilt little brat.

    Once you are aware of narcissism in some people, their reactions / responses start to make sense.

  9. Eternity says:

    That’s why we never hear ” Have A Good Time”

    1. Asp Emp says:

      So very true.

      The narc was not happy I was going away with friends – he never said “Have a nice holiday”, or even when I came back “Did you enjoy your holiday?”.

      Jealousy on his part. Control too.

      1. Eternity says:

        Yup for sure. Not anymore from me . It took me a long time to figure it out and audio consultation with HG in December of last year. But the planning is in gear and I am leaving long over due. It took time .

        1. Asp Emp says:

          Good on you lass 🙂

  10. Eternity says:

    This is not control this is suffocating.
    HG is the Greater Narcissist like this as well.
    I am sure you must give some Freedom to SM.

    1. Witch says:

      All narcs are like this but show it in different ways. My ex would sometimes cause an argument if I was invited out anywhere, sometimes I would reject invitations because of this. He was worse when we were younger and eased up a little bit when we were living together.
      My mother would send me to the shops to pick up something for her so that I was late.

      1. HG Tudor says:


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