Narcissists hunger to have their needs met. If you’re in a close relationship with a narcissist, they will expect you to supply them. The term “narcissistic supply” is rooted in psychoanalytic theory that concerns the essential needs of babies and young children to maintain their mental and emotional equilibrium. Loss of necessary supplies in childhood could lead to depression and later attempts to get them through addiction and other means.
Narcissists’ undeveloped self and deficient inner resources require them to be dependent on other people to affirm their impaired self-esteem and fragile ego. They can only validate themselves as reflected in the eyes of others. Despite their facade of confidence, boasting, and self-flattery, they crave attention, respect, and constant admiration and actually fear that they’re undesirable.