Covert narcissists, also known as fragile or vulnerable narcissists, are typically introverted and quiet. Therefore, it is kind of hard to identify them. They have delicate self-esteem, which entirely thrives on admiration and validation from others.
Covert narcissists always want to show that they are superior to others, so they are in a constant state of comparison with others. They may act happy with your success, but deep down, they envy you more than anyone else. When they see anyone doing better, they get mean to them.
It is imperative to be aware of weird things covert narcissists do because usually, their narcissistic behavior is not evident, and they keep themselves hidden, which makes them more serious threat than other types of narcissists. The affectees of covert narcissist exploitation don’t even realize that they are being abused, at times even for years.
Why is it so important to be aware of weird things covert narcissists do?
To protect yourself from getting manipulated by a covert narcissist, you need to be well aware of their bizarre behavior. When well-informed, you cannot become a victim of blame games, gaslighting, lies, boasting, etc. it is easier to identify them and take necessary precautions when you are around them. You can set clear boundaries with the narcissists, stand your ground in front of them, and they cannot play mind games with you. You know the “dos” and “don’ts” while dealing with the weird things covert narcissists do.
After discussing the importance of awareness, I’ll continue my write-up by discussing the primary seven weird things covert narcissists do.
1. They interrupt while you are talking
covert narcissists never let you finish and are chronic conversation killers. they are never interested in talking about matters that concern you. whenever you try to discuss something important related to you, they will cut you and flip the conversation side towards their life problems. it is always about a covert narcissist, be it their love life crisis, their dream vacation, their finances, their job, their break up, etc.
Covert narcissists are so self-centered that all they care about is themselves, and they want the same sort of attention from others. for them interrupting you is what makes the conversation exciting and dynamic. It indicates how unimportant you are to them. Interestingly, they barely do it in a group talk because they know that they will be pointed out as a narcissistic person and their true colors will be revealed. If you pay attention closely, they are emotionally abusing you by steamrolling over your wish to participate in the group discussion and be heard.
2. They are not even loyal to their close relationships
One of the weird things covert narcissists do is behave selfishly, even with their blood relations and friends. No matter the situation, a covert narcissist will always think about himself first. They will see how much a particular thing benefits them before considering friends and family. At any given moment, when giving up on something may help their close ones, covert narcissists do will be the first ones to back off. for them, their personal interest comes first.
The covert narcissists will always want to get more significant portion of the cake lest they have diabetes. They think so highly of themselves that they never really take part in helping others out unless they know they will get the maximum benefit from it. But they do show some concern about a few people. Who are those lucky ones? The ones power their narcissism by flattering and appreciating their lifestyle and assets.
They will never give your recommendation to anyone to improve your academic or career prospects. Instead, they will mention your weak areas so that you are rejected. damn, so toxic!
3. They lie and fake apologies
Another weird thing covert narcissists do is to lie, even if it is unnecessary. They are literal pathological liars. They lie about everything to conceal their whereabouts or to misguide you on the wrong path. They keep you trapped in a web of lies to hide what is happening in their minds. They cannot risk revealing their whereabouts; otherwise, you will catch them red-handed, and they cannot afford to lose a victim of their abuse.
Moreover, they make up things with details using their imagination, mainly with the idea of creating a false image in front of them. This is to mess up with your head. Covert narcissists put in a lot of effort in their relationships by making up fake stories to keep their egos boosted.
In the end, if you decide to break up with them, they will throw fake apologies at your face, but they are meaningless. They don’t genuinely intend to ask for forgiveness and never change. They will revert to their original selves the moment you decide to give them another chance.
4. They devalue themselves
Do covert narcissists devalue themselves? what? you have to be kidding me! That’s very weird. Let’s see how they do this. You must be wondering that these narcissists have an exaggerated sense of self-importance, so how do they devalue themselves?
Well, as I told you earlier that their soul thrives on praises and all-hails, so they deliberately put on a show of discouraging themselves. They do this to seek attention and fish for compliments. Imagine someone underestimating themselves in front of you. What would be your first response? You will immediately sympathize with them and say a few motivational words to them. This is one of the many weird things covert narcissists do to get validation.
These individuals will be good at playing badminton, for example, and pretend that they suck so that their friends and colleagues vouch for them and tell otherwise. This humility makes them look great when they perform average in what they were presumably bad at.
5. They display passive-aggressive behavior
The most weird thing covert narcissists do is that they engage in passive-aggressive behavior. It is when someone shows unfriendly feelings indirectly instead of telling them openly. For example, harry says something rude to Anna. Anna stops answering Harry’s calls or responding to his messages. Anna is displaying passive-aggressive behavior. Rather than telling harry that he was rude to her, she was cutting him off. This is one of the fundamental traits of a covert narcissist’s personality.
A covert narcissist might be feeling resentful, furious, or angry inside but may show you no emotions at all or even fake being happy on the outside. However, their behavior pattern of being argumentative or sarcastic towards you may reveal their actual emotional state.
When they are pissed at you, they will not talk about it with you. Instead, they will crack mean jokes at you or criticize you. Sometimes they even belittle you and say, “i was just joking. calm down!”.
6. They behave differently with different people
A true sign to spot a covert narcissist is that they behave so differently in different crowds of people. They keep on changing their colors according to the kinds of targets they come across. It baffles your mind, and you cannot help but wonder, “who is he, really?”. They have no core principles of leading a life with integrity, or they keep switching their values according to the type of individuals they interact with.
in one place, a covert narcissist will tell you that he likes to relax and watch netflix on weekends because he wants to hang out with you, and you prefer to stay indoors on sundays. on the other hand, while trying his luck with another colleague, he will say he likes to go to the cinema or a club because she wants to party on the weekends. That is how many double standards these individuals have. They are so unreliable and untrustworthy because every day, they come up with a new statement. Never believe a covert narcissist if you don’t want to lose your sanity.
7. They refuse to do things you request
Covert narcissist love teasing their prey. They will react with stubbornness to your requests to do something for you. They do this on purpose to make you feel like shit. They tend to ignore the tasks you assigned them to carry out. However, there can be two reasons for this behavior. Whether you said or did something that hurt their fragile ego, even if it was unintentional, they will retaliate by deliberately turning down your request to do something for them. Another reason could be that they feel enslaved to you by listening to whatever you say.
When you confront them, they deny being upset at all. They make up a story or straight-up lie to you. they may sometimes surrender to you and complete the task assigned to them. They usually play this tactic to have the edge over you and have some bigger goals to achieve. They only take and never give in return unless they also gain something.
There is no better manipulator in the whole wide world than a covert narcissist. It is hard to recognize one because they always act calm, cool, and composed in front of others. They do so to maintain a fake image of being all nice and decent. However, the reality is entirely different. You can try to identify by observing the weird things covert narcissists do and maintain your distance from such people.
It’s critical to figure out the reality of covert narcissists so you can devise strategies to deal with them accordingly. Once you know that the person you are near is a covert narcissist, you need to set boundaries, minimize your contact, and never take their actions personally. Just keep one thing in mind: covert narcissists are the weirdest subspecies of mankind that can ever exist, and you will never be surprised by the weird things they do.