If you are considering therapy, it’s important to be aware of the different types of therapists that are out there. One type you may come across is the narcissistic therapist. This type of therapist can be harmful to your mental health if you’re not careful. In this blog post, we will discuss what narcissistic therapists are, what to look for in a therapist, and how to protect yourself from their damaging effects.
Who Are Narcissistic Therapists?
Narcissistic therapists are often defined as unique. These therapists are self-centered, grandiose, manipulative, and lacking in empathy. While these personality traits may be off-putting to some. Many people are drawn to the narcissist’s confidence and charisma.
Narcissistic therapists often seek out clients who they believe will reflect well on them. They may try to control the therapy session. Also, these therapists may be quick to give advice.
If you are considering therapy, it is important to do your research. Make sure you find a therapist who will be a good fit for you. Because narcissistic therapists can be difficult to work with. However, if you understand their personality type, it can be helpful.
It is important to remember that narcissistic therapists are not all bad. In fact, they can be very successful in helping their clients. But it is important to be aware of their personality type. And how it may impact your therapy sessions.
Characteristics Of Narcissistic Therapists
Recognizing a narcissistic therapist can be tricky. Because, on the surface, they may seem like any other therapist. They may come across as charming and charismatic. And they may have a lot of superficial charm. However, there are five key signs that you can identify a narcissistic therapist.
Five signs that you might be dealing with narcissistic therapists:
Narcissistic Therapists Violates Boundaries
It is the foremost sign that your therapist is narcissistic. If he or she violates boundaries. For example, a narcissistic therapist may start talking about their personal life. And experiences during therapy sessions. Or they may want to be friends with you outside of therapy.
Sometimes, the therapist might try to control you. For example, a narcissistic therapist might try to tell you what to do, how to feel, or what to think. At that place, they are violating their boundaries.
A Narcissistic Therapist Is Inconsistent
Narcissistic therapists are often inconsistent in their behavior. One minute they can be charming and the next minute they can be critical and belittling. This inconsistency can be confusing and frustrating for patients.
Also, the inconsistencies hamper the treatment. Because it’s difficult to trust and build a rapport with someone who is unpredictable.
Narcissistic Therapists Are Overly Focused On Themselves
Narcissistic therapists may be more focused on themselves than on their patients. For example, they may spend more time talking about their own experiences or views. Or they may interrupt patients frequently. In order to share their own thoughts and feelings.
It can be difficult to get your needs met in therapy. if your therapist is constantly talking about themselves.
Narcissistic Therapists Are Invalid
These therapists are likely to be invalid. What does it mean? They may regularly dismiss or downplay your feelings and experiences. Or they may make you feel like your problems are not important or serious.
Narcissistic therapists often have a “know-it-all” attitude. Which can be very frustrating for patients who are looking for help and guidance.
Even so, these therapists make you feel isolated from outside support. Making it difficult to leave the therapy relationship.
Narcissistic Therapists Are Manipulative
Narcissistic therapists can be manipulative. They may try to control the therapy sessions by dictating the topics of discussion. Or they may use guilt or shame to get patients to do what they want.
For example, a narcissistic therapist might say something like, “If you really cared about your mental health, you would do this homework assignment.”
Or they might try to take credit for your progress in therapy. Saying something like, “I’ve helped you so much, you should be grateful.”
If you are experiencing any of these signs. It is important to talk to your therapist about them. Or find a new therapist who can provide the support that you need. Remember, you have a right to be treated with respect and dignity.
“You deserve a therapist who puts your needs first.”
Things To Pay Attention While Finding Therapist
There are certain things that you should keep in mind. While finding the right therapist for you. Here are some things to look for:
- Are they really listening to you?
- Do they make you feel like you’re being heard?
- Do they understand what you’re saying?
- Is the therapy helping you move forward in your life?
- Do they have your best interests at heart?
If the answer to any of these questions is no. Then it might be time to consider finding a new therapist.
A narcissist will never truly listen to you. Because they are too busy thinking about themselves. They will also interrupt you frequently, talk over you. And dismiss your concerns. If this sounds like your therapist, it might be time for a change.
Things That Therapists Must Have
Therapists must meet certain criteria. They need to be licensed and insured. They also must have the proper training. What should you look for in a therapist?
- Therapists must be good listeners.
- They should be able to help you see things from a different perspective.
- A therapist should also be able to provide support and guidance.
- Find a therapist that you feel comfortable with.
- It is important to trust your therapist.
- Therapists must also have empathy.
- They should be able to understand how you feel.
- A good therapist will make you feel heard and understood.
Therapists are someone who you can rely on. So it is important to establish a good relationship with them. They are the important pillar of society who contributes to mental health. So, it is important for them to be helpful towards the patients.
Dealing With Narcissistic Therapists
If you’re dealing with a narcissistic therapist, there are some things you can do:
- Talk to your therapist about your concerns. Let them know that you feel like they are not meeting your needs.
- Seek out another therapist. There are plenty of good therapists out there, so don’t feel like you have to stay with someone who isn’t meeting your needs.
- Talk to your friends and family about your experiences. They may be able to offer some insights or perspectives that you haven’t considered.
- Write about your experiences. This can be a therapeutic way to process what you’re going through
Seek professional help if you feel like you’re struggling to cope with the situation. A Narcissistic personality disorder is a serious mental illness, and it’s important to get help if you’re dealing with it. A narcissistic therapist can be extremely damaging to your mental health, so it’s important to take steps to protect yourself.
How To Protect Yourself From Narcissistic Therapists?
When you recognize your therapist as narcissistic. It is important to take action to protect yourself. Here are some ways through which you can protect yourself:
- Talk to a different therapist: When you feel like your therapist is crossing the line. It is time to speak up. You can discuss your concerns with your therapist. And if they are unresponsive, it may be time to switch therapists.
- Set boundaries: If you feel like your therapist is taking advantage of you emotionally or financially. It is important to set boundaries. Remember that you are in control of the therapy relationship. And you have a right to say no.
- Get support from outside sources: If you feel like you are being manipulated or controlled by your therapist. Get support from outside sources. This could include talking to a trusted friend or family member. Also, seek professional help from another therapist.
- Do clear communication: Be clear about your needs and expectations from the therapy relationship. This will help to avoid any misunderstandings.
- Seek help from a professional: If you feel like you are in an abusive relationship with your therapist. Seek help from a professional such as a lawyer or law enforcement.
Remember that you have options. And, there is no shame in seeking help if you feel like you are being abused. Narcissistic therapists can be manipulative and dangerous. But with knowledge and support, you can protect yourself from their abuse.
To conclude, narcissistic therapists can be difficult to work with. They may be very charming and persuasive, but they often lack empathy and concern for their patients. If you are considering working with a narcissistic therapist. It is important to do your research. And make sure that they are a good fit for you.
Remember that you have the right to choose a therapist. The one therapist who will best meet your needs. So, don’t be afraid to ask questions or seek out other options if necessary.
A Word From Therapy Mantra
Your mental health — Your psychological, emotional, and social well-being — has an impact on every aspect of your life. Positive mental health essentially allows you to effectively deal with life’s everyday challenges.
At TherapyMantra, we have a team of therapists who provide affordable online therapy to assist you with issues such as depression, anxiety, stress, workplace Issues, addiction, relationship, OCD, LGBTQ, and PTSD. You can book a free therapy or download our free Android or iOS app.