Narcissists often employ love bombing tactics

StaceyNHerrera

**This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events that I have experienced firsthand; used with permission.

I have never fully recovered from being love-bombed by my former partner. I can still remember crying myself to sleep every night for weeks following our break-up. 

In the beginning, he showered me with copious amounts of attention and affection. He told me he loved me all the time, even on our first date! He also sent text messages daily to remind me that he was thinking about me. 

Then one day, his love stopped as abruptly as it began. It was flowing one moment and bone dry the next. So I decided to call it quits. Looking back, I can see how he allowed me to initiate the break-up so that he could cement his spot in the good guy hall of fame. 

Although our break-up was amicable, and we both vowed to stay in touch, it’s been years since I’ve seen or heard from him. I reached out to him once to wish him a happy birthday, but his response felt sterile, almost professional. 

It took me several years to figure out why the end hurt so badly — I had been love-bombed. But you know what they say, “hindsight is 20/20,” and I can see it clearly now.

When it comes to narcissists, there’s a lot of manipulation and games that go on behind the scenes. One such game is love bombing-where the narcissist showers their partner with excessive compliments and attention to control and manipulate them.

Here are three reasons why narcissists love love-bombing their partners:

Validation

Narcissists are often very insecure and need to feel like they’re the best thing since sliced bread. This is why they love-bomb their partners with compliments. It makes them feel good about themselves and bolsters their fragile ego.

When they shower their partner with compliments and empty attention, it gives the narcissist a feeling of power and control. They know that their partner is dependent on their validation, so they use this to their advantage.

“Despite a façade of confidence and independence, narcissists feel insecure and empty. They require constant reassurance or “narcissistic supply” from those around them, but like vampires, it’s never enough to fill their emptiness or satisfy their hunger.” — Darlene Lancer, JD, LMFT

Dopamine 

They get a dopamine rush when they receive compliments and attention from their partners. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that is responsible for pleasure and motivation. So, when narcissists receive compliments and attention from their partners, it triggers a rush of dopamine which gives them a feeling of euphoria.

That feeling of euphoria is what narcissists crave, and it’s one of the reasons why they love love-bombing their partners.

“Attention from a narcissist can be a highly addictive drug. It’s fun and exciting — and sometimes too good to be true. Love bombers attack with praise, compliments, gifts, and attention; but the pretty wrappings are simply meant to detract attention from the true person.” — Kristy Lee Hochenberger Ph.D.

Control 

Lastly, love bombing allows narcissists to control and manipulate their partners into doing what they want. Narcissists can wrap their partners around their fingers by showering them with compliments and attention. They can then force them to do things they wouldn’t normally do.

And because love-bombing is manipulative by definition, it’s a tool narcissists use to get what they want in a relationship.

“Rather than confidence, they actually fear that they’re undesirable. Their sense of self is determined by what others think of them; they try to control what others think to feel better about themselves.” —Darlene Lancer, JD, LMFT

In conclusion, narcissists love love-bombing their partners because it makes them feel good about themselves, gives them a rush of dopamine, and allows them to control and manipulate their partners. 

If you’re in a relationship with a narcissist, keep your eyes peeled and try to keep yourself from getting too wrapped up in their games.

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Intimacy & Relationship coach, writer, and creator of The Sensuality Project. I specialize in Relationship-ing (it's a verb).

Los Angeles County, CA
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