How to Spot a Narcissist on the Very First Date

There are some red flags experts warn about that might save you from future drama

Jennifer Geer
3 min readOct 7, 2021


Watch out for the guys that seem too good to be true.

That was the first bit of dating advice my mother gave me when I was a teen. I should have listened better. I fell for some seemingly perfect guys that turned out to be complete disasters.

My first mistake was falling for a very handsome boy who was probably a bit too old for me. He seemed utterly perfect, and my friends were all jealous.

But his rapt attention towards me faded after only a couple of weeks. It seemed so abrupt to me. We went from soulmates to a night out where he completely ignored me. And after that, I never heard from him again.

“What did I do wrong?” I lamented to my friends. What I didn’t understand at the time was the only thing I did wrong was trusting someone who was throwing dozens of red flag warnings my way. If only I’d had the experience to recognize it.

But there are ways you can spot one coming. Here are some signs you can use to recognize narcissistic behavior on the very first date.

What is a narcissist?

First, let’s look at how psychologists identify narcissism. Narcissism is not an all-or-nothing type of concept but more on a spectrum. The Narcissistic Personality Inventory measures where a person falls with higher scores meaning greater levels of narcissism.

A person with the traits of a narcissist tends to:

  • Show a lack of empathy for others.
  • Wants to be greatly admired.
  • Desires to be the center of attention.
  • Has expectations of special treatment.

Unsurprisingly, people with high levels of narcissism often struggle in romantic relationships.

How to recognize a narcissist

  1. They talk mainly about themselves. Does your date show a true interest in what you have to say? At the end of the night, do you feel you both learned something about each other? Or was it mainly a monologue…



Jennifer Geer

Writer, blogger, mom, owner of pugs, wellness enthusiast, and true crime obsessed.