Troublemaking is a narcissist’s favorite game to play with other people. Because it allows them to take pleasure in the mayhem and feel superior, they like seeing others suffer. They want to control and dominate others in order to feel superior, whether at work, during a sexual encounter, or inside the family. In this blog, we will talk about narcissist triangular disorder.
What Is Narcissistic Triangulation?
Triangulation occurs in a two-person romantic relationship when the narcissistic partner invites a third party. It appears as subliminal emotional assault and is an infringement without consent. The narcissist uses the triangulated person to dominate and control their victim partner.
Narcissist triangular disorder can:
- Your relationship with the narcissist will deteriorate.
- Produce an inaccurately flawed social perception of you.
- Outside of your relationship, ruin your social networks.
- Instill the fear that you are all alone in the world.
Three Points Of Narcissist Triangular Disorder
There are three unique components or responsibilities in narcissist triangular disorder.
This person adopts a “poor me!” attitude and has a prey complex. Whether or whether they are the victim, victims present as sensitive people who feel oppressed, helpless, unhappy, and embarrassed. Whichever way, they are the ones that create the triangle. By presenting themselves as victims, they pique the interest of others and thereby establish the triangle. They typically refuse to accept responsibility for their negative actions as well as the possibility of changing the circumstances they have created.
As a result of feeling the need to watch out for others in order to feel good about themselves, they frequently neglect their own needs and fail to accept responsibility for their own behavior. Rescuers are codependent enablers in the traditional sense. They frequently can’t let the victim get healthy since they rely on the victims for assistance. Since rescuers feel terrible if they don’t save someone, they utilize manipulation techniques like guilt to make their victims dependent on them. Rescuers are frequently busy, exhausted, and imprisoned in a saintly manner while hatred simmers below, which can weaken resolve.
Abusers not only enforce harsh rules but often criticize and condemn the victim. They act in a harsh, demanding, and authoritarian manner as a result. They continue to make the victim feel inferior through their persistent bullying. When it comes to resilience, attackers are incapable of being frail, adaptable, or even human. Because they are also afraid of becoming victims themselves, attackers will rant and criticize without ever genuinely addressing any problems or helping anybody else to overcome them.
What Is Triangulation Psychology?
Triangulation is the use of a third party to exercise control over the other participants in a relationship. To strengthen their defense and give them the courage to confront the aggressor, the victim enlists the assistance of a third party.
Triangulation is detrimental to each of the three parties and ultimately ruins the commercial partnership. Triangulation is frequent in dysfunctional and unstable families. As a result, the linkages become inflexible and fragile.
It seems that triangulation lessens continuing stress in the partnership. However, a narcissist’s ultimate objective is to rule over the other person and portray them as the bad guy. A third party is commonly enlisted by the narcissist or borderline to work with the victim and exert control over them. Rarely, the triangulation process may also be initiated by the victim.
Why Do Narcissists Love Triangulation?
We wonder why do people with narcissist triangular disorder engage in triangulation. Not all narcissists use triangulation, though. It is something that even healthy people occasionally go through, and family therapy frequently deals with it. For instance, a married couple experiencing issues would seek counseling. However, they subsequently concentrate on how the therapy isn’t working for them, casting the therapist as the culprit.
However, narcissists frequently utilize triangulation to keep their target on course. They utilize it to maintain devotion and downplay other people’s accomplishments. It is a tight type of control, to put it another way.
Triangulation is used by narcissists because it is effective. The majority of people like to think the best of other people. Therefore, a good individual might not conclude that the narcissist is disclosing information for nefarious purposes. They can unwittingly fall victim to their clever trap.
Since empaths and narcissists regularly find themselves in relationships with one another, the narcissist benefits from someone else wishing to save them. The narcissist is seen by the empath as a fine person with flaws. They want to see their development and advancement. Because they are aware of it, narcissists exploit the empath’s way of thinking.
How To React To Narcissist Triangulation
Stopping the narcissist triangulation’s manipulation is the only way to leave the toxic relationship while maintaining your mental health.
The following list outlines the five essential steps for quitting narcissistic abuse and moving forward.
Recognize that the Narcissist is Using Triangulation
The first step in stopping triangulation is becoming aware of it. Once you are aware that triangulation is occurring, you will be able to stop feeling guilty. It will also help you realize that the narcissist is the issue, not you.
Find a Therapist
Dealing with narcissistic abuse and narcissistic triangulation is simple when you have a therapist on your side. Together, you and your therapist must identify relational patterns and decide on nonjudgmental strategies to change them. A wonderful place to start is by choosing a therapist who can assist you in identifying and recovering from narcissistic abuse. A smart place to start is a therapist directory.
Cut Off the Contact with the Narcissist
Eliminating narcissistic connections is the simplest method to stop triangulation. The triangle is over as soon as you exit the relationship and stop giving the narcissist your attention.
Respond, Don’t React
Sometimes a narcissist will still try to entice you into a love triangle after having a private, honest conversation with them. Remember that the narcissist is searching for your emotional reaction in these situations to bring you back into your regular patterns.
To make it more obvious that you won’t triangulate in the future, you just need to cease doing it. The loudest method to express this boundary in this situation is to match triangulation with silence. You can also keep this boundary in the present by employing extra skills like grounding, memorizing, and practice of narcissist-disarming statements, or in advance, by mentally practicing this scenario with a friend or therapist.
Set Clear Boundaries
Establish clear boundaries if you need to talk to the narcissist again. You must take care of yourself in order to stop the cycle of abuse that results from narcissist triangulation, and setting boundaries is an essential part of that. In toxic relationships and dysfunctional families, triangulation is a form of manipulative behavior that is frequently observed. This pattern of unfavorable social interaction is frequently a key element of narcissistic abuse.
Triangulation is a common tactic used by concealed narcissists to dominate and control their relationships, families, friends, and jobs. They employ this deceptive tactic to maintain control over the dynamics of their relationship with you. Anyone can affect your connection, whether they are a close friend or a total stranger.
How Do You Avoid Triangulation In A Relationship?
To prevent triangulation from a person having narcissist triangular disorder in families and among friends, one should take the following precautions:
- Ensure that your relationships with family, friends, career, and leisure time are all in harmony.
- Healthy communication demands openness, sincerity, and an effort to prevent growing conflicts.
- Before taking any action, make sure you understand it.
- If you believe a conversation is going in a bad way, leave the room.
- Apply restraint. You do this to maintain your composure and demonstrate your uncontrollability.
- Stay in touch with your family and let them know about any issues or worries you may be experiencing.
The best course of action in these situations is to take a step back, assess the situation, and then act appropriately. Speak to a mental health professional if you feel that you or a loved one could benefit from further help. They can help you learn more about your connections that are related to triangulation and how to safely negotiate them.
What Is An Example Of Triangulation?
All of a narcissist’s relationships have the potential to and will eventually display narcissistic triangulation, but it will be particularly obvious in those that they cannot avoid. Have a look at the examples of narcissist triangulation:
Triangulation With Parents & Children
Triangulation between parents and children could look like this:
- Convince the youngster that the missing parent is the only one at fault.
- Limiting communication with the child and avoiding direct contact with the other parent.
- The narcissistic parent intercepts the other parent’s life through the child in an effort to use that information against that parent in the future.
- Establishing excessive limitations and boundaries while disregarding the acceptable rules established by the other parent.
- Parents who discuss their feelings about the other parent with their kids in an effort to change how those kids perceive that parent.
- Offering treats or indulgences that the other parent would normally disallow.
Narcissistic Triangulation Between Siblings
The following are typical signs of sibling triangulation:
- Parents switch which child gets their attention and praise, creating the impression that siblings are competing for it.
- One child is the perfect or their favorite in the eyes of the parent, while the other is referred to as the problem child, who must behave better to win the parent’s approval.
In Romantic Relationships
The following are some examples of how narcissistic triangulation may manifest in a romantic partnership:
- Requesting a platonic friend to support your stance in a disagreement.
- They may tell you that your ex won’t leave them alone or wants to get back together with them in an effort to reassure you or act in a way that will satisfy their narcissistic supply.
- They might complain to your mother about how unfairly or harshly you are treating them, and she will reprimand you.
Your Boss Uses Narcissistic Triangulation
Triangulation can be used by a narcissistic boss in the following ways:
- Before making a significant business decision, two employees will consult with you rather than acting as the boss.
- Contrasting a team member who is more productive with an underperforming employee in front of the group
- In an effort to alter your perception of the company or otherwise alter your behavior, the manager confides in you about the potential of having to hire a less competent worker.
Narcissistic Triangulation Between Coworkers
The following are some ways that narcissistic triangulation shows up among employees:
- Telling you that they were mistreated by someone else so that you can stand up for them afterward.
- When you disagree with a narcissistic coworker, they may bring up the manager to have you disciplined as retaliation.
- When a coworker accuses you of deserving your leadership position so they may steal it for themselves.
What Are Some Common Phrases Narcissists Use When Triangulation?
The most common things people with narcissist triangular disorder might say are listed here, along with when to expect them in a relationship.
The idealization stage
Relationships with narcissists progress swiftly. Because they have similar interests and can draw power from one another’s personalities, some people just instinctively click. The bad news is that everyone who moves too quickly when they first begin really speeds up intimacy. Anyone who feels the need to do that implies that they are acting strangely.
Narcissists will say things like these in the first few weeks:
- My true love is you.
- I’ve never met someone quite like you.
- Nobody, in my opinion, genuinely comprehends me the way you do.
- Our encounter was preordained.
- I’ve never had feelings for someone like this before.
- Yes, you are the only buddy I have. Only you are my friend.
- You’re so loving, imaginative, wise, wonderful, and perfect.
The devaluation stage
A narcissist begins to reveal their actual personality after they have their prey captured. Their language now begins to contain sarcasm and jabs. They say things with the intention of lowering their partner’s self-esteem. They criticize aspects of their partnership that they formerly seemed to love. Even when everything is horrible, there is still some affection because the narcissist knows they have to keep acting like the relationship can still be saved. The narcissist convinces their victim that the insults are their fault by portraying themselves as still being lovable.
These are some of the things narcissists may say during this phrase:
- Why no one else enjoys you makes sense.
- My friends hate you, but you can count on me no matter what.
- You appear quite uneasy.
- I wonder what’s wrong with you.
- Is it accurate to say that you value me more than your friends?
The discard phase
Once they have completely worn out their victim, a narcissist may stop caring about them. They might have lost every penny they had, or they might have just found another victim to rob. In any event, they will be disrespectful at their harshest right now and continue to attack their partner.
They will pour poison on their victim, like:
- Everybody hates you
- You are a foul person.
- Nobody will ever love you as I do.
- This is something that you caused.
Few More Examples Of People With Narcissist Triangular Disorder
- A notable example of the triangulation approach being misused is gossip. They could inform you of the lies and slander being spread about you. Unexpectedly, they also spread false information about you behind your back to harm your reputation. so that if you tried to expose them after leaving them, no one would believe you.
- They usually take care to make sure that there is no possibility of a third party assisting you in solving your issues. All parties’ animosity is maintained, anger and hurt are generated, and the narcissist appears to be running a circus as a result.
- A narcissist can make you believe they are incredibly attractive by telling you about a flirtatious colleague who is chasing them. You can have insecurity as a result and worry that your sweetheart will go.
- They may invite a total stranger over and spend the evening whining about how uncomfortable it makes them feel to be around you. And in spite of their clear refusal to give you what you deserve and their sincere concern for your pleasure.
The Bottom Line
You can’t always stop narcissists from triangulating because they frequently only change their behavior when they want to.
It may be difficult to come up with practical answers and ensure your personal safety while interacting with someone who employs these techniques. A therapist can give advice and assist you in compiling a toolkit of practical coping mechanisms.
How can we stop triangulation at work?
In general, there are three approaches to dealing with triangulation:
How To Stop Narcissistic Triangulation
To stop narcissistic triangulation, follow these four steps:
- The key is to identify narcissistic triangulation early.
- Convoke the third party.
- Be silent around the narcissist.
- Make them understand your limitations.
What does it mean to triangulate someone?
Triangulation happens when a toxic or manipulative person, typically one who possesses strong narcissistic traits, brings in a third party to their relationship in an effort to maintain control. The two triangulated parties will be able to communicate only through the manipulator, if at all.
Is triangulation a form of manipulation?
Triangulation is a manipulation tactic used to avoid having a direct conversation. As the name suggests, three parties are involved.
How To Address Triangulation?
When triangulation is identified, those on the primary connection may be most suited to address it. A third party should initiate direct communication with the other two parties as soon as they recognize that triangulation is a problem.