Why did I feel such intimacy and closeness in a narcissist’s presence?
By River Ruca
Some narcissists are very, very skilled at this; it’s called reflecting.
Take a step back and look closely at their behavior when you are feeling close and connected. What did they really do or say to make you feel that way? Do you see any similarities between their actions and the way you yourself behave?
This is essentially the main hook that narcissists use to get you to fall for them: they reflect you. They show you another version of yourself, which, if it is authentic, is what many of us are looking for when we think of true love- someone similar to us who makes us feel understood and connected.
I’ll give you an example from my experience. My narc made me feel intimately connected to him by mirroring me in almost every way. First, my body language. This is the easiest way to endear yourself to someone, because it is subconscious- and you also don’t have to know the person at all to reflect it. All you have to do is observe their movements and gestures, and mimic them- while making it look natural of course. So if you are sitting at a table and they rest their chin on their hand, you do the same. When you are walking together, they line up their steps with yours. If you make a lot of hand gestures when talking, they do as well. They’ll kiss you the way you kiss, hold hands the way you hold hands, and so on.
These are natural, subconscious cues that we interpret as meaning we are in sync with someone. When you do have an authentic connection with someone, these things generally do happen naturally- but they can be intentionally executed to generate a sense of connection with you.
Second, once they know you a little bit, they’ll mirror the way you talk about things; they’ll parrot your perspective. So if you love dogs, they will show interest in every dog you pass on the street. If you are analytical, they will speak about things analytically. If you are really into yoga, they will make sure you know they also do yoga. And so on.
Third, they will mirror your values. If you are really close with your family, they’ll express interest in your family and talk about their own family in a way that suggests they are also. If you believe in practicing kindness and acceptance, they will cook up stories and situations that depict them doing some random act of kindness.
Basically, their greatest weapon is their ability to observe you and become your mirror without you noticing. The reason we don’t notice this is happening is because it is an outright abnormal thing to do. Normal people who desire normal bonds simply are themselves, and if you are in sync, you are, and if not, then that’s okay too. Intentionally constructing a persona that displays yourself as being the twin flame to someone else is a manipulation tactic- and it’s effective because a mentally stable person would never assume this is what someone is doing.
I know it’s difficult to fathom, but the intimacy and connection really was all manufactured to make you lovesick. I encourage you to look back on their behaviors from this perspective, and analyze them accordingly; you will likely see how much of them was really just you. It will make it easier to let go.
<3 Speedy healing, friend!