Being married to a narcissistic husband or wife can feel devastating, shaming, and utterly alone. You’re afraid to talk about it to anyone because your spouse will threaten you. Here’s what you need to know about being married to a narcissist husband or wife.

My narcissistic husband and I fight constantly and when I told him that he needs to decide one way or another if he is interested in staying in our marriage or leaving he said he wanted to leave. We have small children and I don’t want to raise them separately. I love my husband but I resent him so much that I don’t show him love even when I feel it. I have found him to be dishonest in the past and I often ask him questions to test whether or not he is telling the truth. I feel like he is a narcissist and I don’t know if we can repair this marriage even though I would like to. Can you help?” – Anonymous client

Thank you for your email. It is confusing and scary to be constantly fighting, yet is quite common if you don’t have the tools you need to stop the vicious cycle.

How to Stop Fighting with Narcissist Husband

When couples become aware of why they are fighting and what they can do differently, negativity can be stopped.

In terms of your husband’s actions, people often resort to unsavory behavior when they are feeling unsafe and disconnected as their primary goal is survival and protecting oneself at all costs. He is most likely capable of different behavior than if your relationship were in a state of health and connection. Keep that in mind while you pack your patience with him.

The continued resentment that you feel and say prevents you from displaying the love you have is not helping the situation either. This unconnected dynamic allows the negativity in your relationship to fester, preventing any positive energy that could break the cycle. Focus on breaking the cycle with positive, thoughtful communication.

Demanding Communication Makes Him Feel Backed Into a Corner and Attacked

Finally, pushing him by asking questions to see if he will tell the truth may only backfire. Many people that lie do so because they are afraid of the consequences of telling the truth. If you are very reactive, he may hide things from you to avoid facing your wrath. While this is not your fault, the cycle will continue unless one of your consciously and deliberately breaks it.

His Insecurity Isn’t Your Fault

While his insecurity does not justify lying, it is important to know that lying is many times a defense mechanism and is not necessarily pathological. If he felt safe to be open and honest with you without excessive repercussions, you may find him to be more transparent.

I see you are quite conflicted because you say you love your husband and want to work it out, and don’t want to raise your children separately. I believe that if you both could commit to learning how to create more emotional safety with each other, and become more aware of the root cause of your conflict, you would have more hope and be able to attain a more connected relationship.

Creating Emotional Safety

We have found that the quickest way to create more emotional safety and understand what’s really going on in your relationship is an intensive program that allows you to set aside a few days to really focus on your marriage. Because this is the best way to begin creating that emotional safety, we host private marriage intensive retreats.

If you’ve been wanting to learn more about relationships, seeing the big picture of what’s going on in your marriage, and being provided with direction for moving forward, gaining concrete tools you can apply on a daily basis, then our marriage retreat is for you.

More inspiration about being married to a narcissist:

Transformational Imago Relationship Therapy Retreats

When you are stuck in a bad place, a serious breakthrough is called for. You don’t have the time to be in pain, especially if you so desperately want a better future. Our private 2 Day Marriage Restoration Retreat is the best way to get some answers quickly, and experience the transformation that will provide hope that your marriage can truly blossom into the dream you wished for when you first met. Talk with us today about our 2 Day private Marriage Restoration Retreat so that you can make the big shift safely and happily!


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Shlomo & Rivka Slatkin

Rabbi Shlomo Slatkin is an Imago relationship therapist and certified (master level) Imago workshop presenter with over 20 years of experience hosting couples therapy retreats in-person and online. Contact or