When we understand human dynamics at a closer and deeper level – we can observe there are many similarities between the narcissistic and co-dependent personalities, with some distinguishing differences.

Both the co-dependent and the narcissist feel an intense inner emptiness – they both seek to define ‘self’ from outer sources. The narcissist and the co-dependent have similar feelings of unworthiness, inner beliefs of not being ‘good enough’ and have doubt and grave insecurities about being a healthy ‘source to self’.

The true defining factor between the co-dependent and the narcissist is ‘conscience’. Co-dependents possess a conscience – whereas narcissists don’t. Both the narcissist and the co-dependent try to get their needs met unhealthily. Obviously the narcissist’s tactics are more malicious in nature.

The co-dependent’s model of the world is: ‘I have been hurt. If I love you and connect with you more, you will grant me what I need.’ The narcissist’s model of the world is ‘I have been hurt. I don’t trust you – I never will. I will pit myself against you and take from you in order to get my needs met’.

Narcissists and co–dependents often enter relationships together. They are in fact a perfect and natural match. Their inner emptiness is a ‘match’ and therefore there is a natural chemical attraction, the glue that holds the union together initially is that the co-dependent is the willing giver, and the narcissist is the willing taker.

What starts to create the pain and struggle is, the co-dependent is truly focused on securing partnership, happiness and ‘happily ever after’,whereas the narcissist believes love, partnership and union will render him or her powerless, and unable to ‘stay on top of the game’ and retain ‘the upper hand’.

The co-dependent tries to achieve ‘inner fullness’ bygetting love, approval and validation from the narcissist, and the narcissist tries to gain him or herself from the egoic‘false self’ standpoint of being ‘special’ – and needs to see his or her specialness reflected back via the co-dependent.

The co-dependentmakes it all about the narcissist, and the narcissistmakes it all about him or herself.

The co-dependent is already a frail sense of self, and coupled with his or her intense focus on the narcissist to provide love, approval and validation - intense pain, fear and powerlessness results when the narcissist continues to abuse and doesn’t grant love, approval and validation.

Unknowingly co-dependents are perfect targets to allow this transference to take place. This is when a co-dependent can become ‘narcissistic’ and ‘act narcissistically’. The co-dependent then becomes irrational, demanding, self-absorbed and controlling – intensely so. These are the tactics of fear and panic. The trying to survive and get needs met whilst dealing with a narcissistic personality.

Author's Bio: 

The author specializes in, narcissistic tendencies, relationship and offers many valuable tips. But if you want to know more about narcissistic personality disorder traits then please visit Melanietoniaevans.com