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Nine Ways Narcissists Can Punish You
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Punishment is a classic part of narcissistic relationships.  They punish you if they think you criticize them, they punish you if you express a need, they punish you if you question their inappropriate behaviour, and they punish you if you try to give them feedback. In a narcissistic relationship, there’s always a punishment that is waiting to happen.  One wrong move and you will face their wrath because vindictiveness is such a classic part of the narcissistic pattern. It is their way of avenging ego injuries.  Punishments are a way for them to maintain control and keep you forever watching your every word and move.

Nine Ways Narcissists Can Punish You


This can play out in lots of ways. Giving you the silent treatment stonewalling, giving short abrupt answers, not telling you what they’re doing and just doing it.  No communication, not being forthcoming with information, not being affectionate or withholding affection or communication. They just withhold and that’s how they punish you.  They withhold anything and everything and it becomes a game.

Rage Is A Classic Narcissists Way To Punish You

This can be noisy anger slamming doors or fists into walls, angry verbal outbursts, all the way to violence.  If they are mad at you they will lash out and it can be loud and messy and scary. This is a common reaction from many narcissistic people.   Not all narcissistic people show rage. For some, it is messy and looks out of control. They are going to be more likely to do withholding, passive aggression, and humiliation as a form of punishment. 

If this is a rage that is seeming to escalate,  you need to make sure you have a safety plan.  Rage is not acceptable behaviour,  there is nothing that makes it easier.  It’s unsettling and ultimately it will take a toll on your health.  Rage is also a way for them to punish and control you even when they are not actively raging. Because it means that you and anyone else around them is wary of upsetting them.

Passive aggressive and sulky behaviour. 

This could be hurtful jokes at your expense.  They may make some sarcastic comments in front of others. Then they ask you to come over and give them a kiss, purposeful pointing at their cheek.  Then there are those little jabs nothing is ever right. For example, perhaps you are driving the car and each time they tell you which route or road you should have driven, they always know better. They may say things to confuse you. Sabotage your efforts. Tactics to maintain power over you or simply undermine you.

Narcissists Can Punish You With Public humiliation. 

Get annoyed at you in front of others. If he perceives you have done something wrong, resulting in you being embarrassed by what and how he says things, you might just respond with nervous laughter or a simple “I’m sorry”. Make crude comments about you sexually in front of his friends, like “get yer tits out for the boys”

Smear Campaigns.

It’s not enough for them to just punish you, they may start spreading untruths about you on social media, or to anyone who will listen. Your reputation or your relationships with friends will suffer. They will mobilize flying monkeys. They will really try to do a number on how people view you, this can damage relationships but also potentially harm your career.

Narcissists Use Threats And Menance To Punish You

This kind of behaviour may be more of the province of the malignant narcissist, post-separation they can threaten you with legal action. Or send you texts and emails that after reading them put you in a place of fear and uncertainty. Or even worse you feel you are losing your marbles after reading how they have turned around their bad behaviour. They are now trying to blame you for their disrespect and lies and everything that went wrong. You may continue to be fearful after the end of the relationship. As you are still grieving and trying to come to terms with the whole abusive nature of the relationship.

A Narcissist Will Flaunt their new life or partner To Punish You

As much as a narcissist leaving you can be the best thing that happened to you, you may not recognize that in the beginning.  They may punish you by flaunting their fabulous new life.  Great vacations, being in great shape and showing it off in various states of undress online. 

If this was an intimate relationship the ultimate knife to the heart is the pictures of the new love bombing situation. To see how quickly they have moved on and have got engaged or married within weeks or months of leaving or getting divorced. Loved up comments, happy ever after or I’ve plighted my troth,  or so this is what love feels like.  They’ll have their new target on display for all the world to see. If it’s a divorce they may parade your children around on a vacation. Remember you know the reality the pictures may be painful but you know the reality.

Narcissists Can Punish You Using Money.

Narcissists punish with money and the probability is that they will likely have more money than you.  So whether it’s divorce or termination of a relationship they are content to fight and cause legal conflict over almost anything. The children, the family home, pets or other precious items.  They will instruct the “specialist” lawyers to try and cut you out of receiving a share of assets. I have known of a person who had his new girlfriend storing all the major kitchen appliances he was buying in anticipation of moving out of the marital home. Then not want any of the furniture or equipment leaving all the old items to his long-suffering wife.

They will hide money or assets to ensure an inequitably split in a divorce.  If you try to leave or take a stand in the relationship they will use money as a weapon, this can be really difficult for people in these relationships to acknowledge that lack of money is why they are stuck. Narcissists will punish you by sabotaging your opportunities for financial independence.  Financial abuse in the post-separation can destroy victims for years.  Using an essential resource like money,  especially for those who are financially vulnerable is common. They will often use it to entice you, dangle money like a carrot with conditions attached, and then pull it back when you do not do what they want. Or in my case, as I was told: “behave as I’ve requested”.

I told you so. 

While in the long run leaving or ending a narcissistic relationship will be good for you initially it may be difficult.  Divorce is expensive, financial struggles challenge finding a new job or getting a new venture off the ground.  The fear of being alone and you may be struggling and stumbling a bit. They may smugly roll up and tell you that maybe you got ahead of yourself and do the “I told you so”. 

I told you life was going to be hard without me punishment is a part of every narcissistic relationship. Or being told “your future security depends on having me on your side so don’t alienate me” while he is threatening you with eviction from the home you were meant to share.  Vindictiveness is one more way they fortify their fragile egos if you dare cross them, critique them, set boundaries with them, heaven help you actually end the relationship they will ensure that you pay.  Narcissists will punish you and this can feel as difficult as the relationship and sometimes results in people wanting to give up.

Suicide Attempts As A Factor Of Domestic Violence And Eviction

Suicide is a factor that comes up at the end of a relationship and more women attempt to end their lives, the statistics show that domestic violence is a factor in up to one-quarter of suicide attempts.
According to data from the organization Stop Desahucios,(evictions) part of the Platform of People Affected from Mortgage repossessions, 34% of the suicides in Spain result from evictions.

Evictions, Homelessness and Domestic Violence

In several countries, research findings demonstrate that the percentage of homeless women who have experienced domestic violence extends up to 40% in the UK and Ireland to 50% in Portugal and Hungary with an acutely higher proportion of partner abuse of 100% and 93% in Spain and Sweden.

Post-separation from a narcissistic relationship the punishment does not stop and this is why the law on precarious evictions in Spain needs to be changed.  Precarious eviction is a form of Gender Violence when it is a punishment for not behaving as requested. That’s just the way the narcissistic person wants it, they like to be able to use punishment to keep you forever their prisoner. To be able to use Spanish law to leave a former partner emotionally, psychologically and financially devastated.

To add insult to injury in my situation there were seven unsuccessful attempts to negotiate or mediate a resolution with the former partner. Although he was offering a settlement he also told me a number of times, “You can not negotiate with me. You can not negotiate a gift.”  He had the money the power and the control in the situation, able to employ lawyers to move his threats to legal conflict. Plus, although Spanish law on Gender Violence recognises emotional and psychological abuse in relationships and post-separation, it seems that there are gaps in the system. As my research shows.

Here are my findings from the GREVIO report on Spain published in 2020

Research found that migrant women victims of intimate partner violence, in spite of their significant capacity for resilience, faced greater barriers to exercising their rights than Spanish women, as well as greater barriers to employment, housing, education of children, social resources and economic benefits.

1. Domestic violence, including psychological violence (Articles 33 and 35) 208. In Spain, several specific offences exist to cover the different manifestations of psychological violence in intimate relationships: intimidation and threats, including light intimidation (Article 171, paragraphs 4 and 5), coercion, including light coercion (Article 172, paragraph 2) and mental damage or other harm inflicted without necessarily causing an injury (Article 153).

Case law has clarified the element of the relationship required by these offences. In this regard, the Supreme Court issued a resolution in 2018 stating that any act of violence perpetrated by a man against a woman during an intimate relationship as a couple constitutes an act of power and superiority over women, regardless of their motivation or intent, thus qualifying it as gender-based violence.

104. While welcoming the latter, GREVIO notes that in the absence of data on the implementation of these offences, it is difficult to verify whether psychological violence in all its manifestations is prosecuted and punished, as the convention requires.

210. According to the Macro-Survey 2019, 27% of women aged 16 or over living in Spain have experienced psychological violence by an intimate partner at some point in their life.

105. During the State Pact hearings, it was also noted that, according to data from the national 016 helpline, the number of women who asked for help on the grounds of psychological violence has increased. NGOs informed GREVIO that this form of violence is often unrecognised by courts, while convictions are extremely rare.

Three reasons why I published my first book. 

Title: “Post Separation Abuse, Betrayal & Abandonment, What Type Of Man?” 

The author’s name of Loren Keeling. 

1. To raise awareness of hidden emotional and psychological abuse in intimate relationships. 

2. Highlighting the gaps in the laws that often fail women. As a warning to unmarried couples especially women who become or are financially dependent on their partners.

3. For information and educational purposes signposting to helpful resources.

Readers will also discover
2 Resources for keeping a record of incidents of bullying behaviour, angry outbursts, and emotional abuse.

Writing as a way to heal – Letters to the ex – Letters to the other women

40 Signs of Emotional Abuse

4 Steps to Release Anger & Resentment

5 Ways to Recover & Heal

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