Dealing with a narcissist in any capacity is never easy, especially when the narcissist is a sibling or relative.
If you have a narcissistic sibling and you want to go no contact or begin to cut them from your life, there are a few ways to go about doing so while protecting yourself.
Cutting off a narcissistic sibling is possible by setting your boundaries in place and sticking to them, even when times get tough.
Learning how to set boundaries is fundamental for any relationship, especially those that involve individuals who have narcissistic personality disorders or those who exhibit narcissistic tendencies and behaviors.
What is a narcissist?
A narcissist is an individual who is typically thought of as arrogant and full of themselves.
They may have trouble seeing themselves as anything but fantastic, even if they are in the wrong or out of line.
A narcissist will typically be driven by their own wants, needs, and desires, and will rarely think of others when making plans and moving forward in life.
Identifying a narcissist is not always easy, however, as narcissists tend to be very good at masking and keeping their narcissistic behavior and traits under wraps when necessary.
If you are dealing with a narcissistic sibling, you will likely pick up on certain behaviors and traits that become apparent and obvious over time, especially well into adulthood.
How do I know if my sibling is acting narcissistically?
If you believe you have a sibling who is a narcissist or who exhibits narcissistic tendencies, there are a few ways to pick up on them.
A narcissistic sibling may find it challenging to speak about anything other than themselves, their lives, and the plans they have for their future.
They may not find it interesting to hear about your life, children, household, career, or any other plans you have in mind.
A sibling who is narcissistic may not consider your feelings or emotions whenever they are around you, which can leave you feeling less than appreciated, understood, and loved.
For a narcissist, it may be difficult for them to see any issue with how they behave and act, even in front of their own family.
Signs that a sibling may be a narcissist
Although there is not always one way to tell if a sibling is a narcissist, there will often be signs.
Some signs to watch out for that may indicate that your sibling is a narcissist may include:
- He/she is not interested in listening to anyone else or learning about the lives of friends and family members of their own.
- They are focused on themselves and only seek self-pleasure and self-serving pursuits, rather than thinking of others.
- They rather show empathy or have sympathy for others, even their own friends and relatives.
- It is difficult to get them to engage in conversations and/or activities that do not surround them or that do not give them the spotlight and attention they crave for themselves.
- They revel in talking about themselves or focusing solely on themselves in conversations and in everyday life.
- They see no issue with their behavior, even if they are confronted about their actions head-on by someone they know and trust.
- They may prefer to live in denial regarding their narcissistic behaviors and tendencies rather than facing the truth, especially if their personality has been able to get them what they want in life so far.
How to deal with a sibling who is a narcissist
Dealing with a sibling who is a narcissist is not always easy, nor is it pleasant, especially if you enjoy maintaining positive relationships with your siblings and relatives.
If you are dealing with a sibling who is a narcissist, you may need to take a step back to remove yourself from the situation to determine what course of action is best for you.
In some cases, you may be able to tolerate spending time around a narcissistic sibling periodically and for a limited amount of time.
However, for others, spending any time around a sibling who is a narcissist can cause various triggers, leading you to feel mentally and emotionally overwhelmed.
Before you can spend time around a narcissistic sibling, you will need to consider your own feelings and the relationship you have with your sibling.
You should also set and enforce boundaries that are comfortable for you and that will allow you to spend time with your sibling without feeling pressured, overwhelmed, or out of your element.
How to set boundaries with a sibling who is a narcissist
Setting boundaries with a sibling who is a narcissist is not always easy, especially if you live within close proximity to the rest of your family members, including your narcissistic sibling.
If you want to see your sibling and the rest of your family but you want to do so while protecting your own mental health and stability, you will need to set boundaries.
You can set boundaries with your sibling by doing so in person and when you are both in a positive mood, or you can choose to do so by sending a letter, sending a text message, or even sending a lengthy email setting your boundaries in place.
Selecting a method in which to contact your sibling will depend on the current dynamics of your relationship.
It is not always easy to set boundaries with others who demonstrate narcissistic tendencies and behaviors, especially when those individuals are your own siblings.
If you are unsure of how to approach the topic of boundaries with your sibling, consider speaking with your parents, other siblings, and distant relatives for guidance and input.
When is it time to step away from a relationship with a narcissistic sibling?
Unfortunately, making things work with a narcissist is not always possible, even if you have tried your best and want to keep the narcissist in your life.
If you have a sibling who is a narcissist but is unwilling to respect your boundaries or work on their behavior, you may need to take time to step away from the relationship altogether.
If your sibling is unwilling to work with you when setting and enforcing boundaries but instead, chooses to dismiss your requests and boundaries, you may need to take some time apart.
If your sibling continues harmful and/or abusive narcissistic behaviors, it is best to remove yourself from the situation and free yourself from any strings your sibling has attached to you.
How do I step away from a relationship with a narcissistic sibling?
Is it not always easy to step away from a relationship with someone who is a narcissist, especially if that individual is your sibling or another close family member.
Because siblings typically have lifelong bonds, separating yourself from your sibling can be extremely emotional and heavy on your mind and mental health.
Some ways to prepare to step away from a narcissistic sibling might include:
- Taking time apart, especially if you do not live with one another
- Setting contact and communication boundaries in place
- Avoiding gatherings where your sibling will be present for a period of time
- Limited the methods in which you communicatee with one another
Is it possible for my sibling to stop exhibiting narcissistic behaviors?
In some cases, it may be possible for your sibling to stop exhibiting narcissistic behaviors altogether, with an understanding of their condition and the willingness to work on themselves.
It is not always easy for those who demonstrate narcissistic personality traits to come to terms with their actions and behaviors, even if they consider themselves to be self-aware.
If your sibling is willing to take an honest look at themself and take an honest inventory of their behaviors and actions, there is a chance that they may be able to change for the better.
If your sibling is in denial of their actions and behaviors, however, it may be more difficult to encourage them to get the help they need for the narcissistic behaviors they are displaying in their everyday lives.
Additionally, it is also important for your sibling to respect your wishes and boundaries if they want to remedy their narcissistic behaviors and tendencies.
If your sibling is unwilling to work with you and to manage the boundaries you have set in place for your own relationship, they are not likely to find it possible to change other areas of their personality.
A narcissist will need to admit to their own faults and want to seek change for any new change to actually occur and remain permanent.
How can my sibling get help for their narcissistic tendencies?
If you believe your sibling not only displays narcissist behaviors but may also have a formal diagnosis of NPD (Narcissistic Personality Disorder), you may be wondering how they can get help as quickly as possible.
Getting help for NPD is possible with individual counseling sessions, working with an individual therapist, or even visiting group therapy sessions with other like-minded individuals.
From local in-group therapy sessions to online chat rooms, forums, and communities, there are extensive resources for individuals who struggle with NPD as well as narcissistic tendencies and behaviors in their everyday life available today.
If your sibling is willing to seek out and receive help for their narcissistic behaviors, they can do so with an abundance of resources.
Do all individuals who struggle with NPD require professional help in order to get better?
In many cases, individuals who have an official diagnosis of NPD, or Narcissistic Personality Disorder, may require the help of a professional therapist, counselor, or psychiatrist in order to receive the proper help they need.
A professional who specializes in behavioral disorders can help to guide individuals who struggle with NPD or narcissistic tendencies to come to self-actualization and to work on their own self-awareness.
While not all individuals will require the assistance of a professional who specializes in NPD to face and overcome narcissistic behaviors and tendencies, they can help to streamline the process while allowing the individual to better understand themselves and their personalities without feeling ashamed and overwhelmed.
Understanding what a narcissist is and how to go about removing yourself from toxic relationships and situations is essential, even if the narcissist in your life is your sibling.
While it is unfortunate to deal with a narcissistic sibling in your everyday life, it is more troubling to do so when you are unsure of how to protect and defend yourself.
Removing yourself from situations that involve your narcissistic sibling and attempting to get them to become more self-aware of their own behaviors and actions is best to help remedy and repair the relationship you do have with one another.