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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5804
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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What does it mean if my husband uses the same words / word

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What does it mean if my husband uses the same words / word patterns over and over in normal conversation? For example, for anything the least bit challenging, the adjective he chooses is "brutal." Also, when he's talking in hypotheticals, instead of saying, "I would say to so and so..." he says, "I said to so and so..." as if the conversation had taken place. (He knows he's talking in hypotheticals, but he still says "I said..."). These are only a couple of examples of things that crop up all the time in conversation. Another example: if he's describing a churchgoing friend of ours, he always uses the word "devout" before the word "Christian" although he knows nothing about the person's sincerity, etc. If a person is bilking the system, he or she has a "sense of entitlement." Comes up literally over and over and over.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.


From a psychological standpoint, using the same words over and over does not mean there is anything wrong with him. He may just not be a creative thinker in terms of language and expressing himself so he chooses words that make it easier for him and uses them over and over. It is very common for people to do this for a time then find new words they prefer to use.


Using the word "brutal" all the time may just be a way for him to cover all bases with a response no matter what is being said. It is like teenagers who say one word in response to all stories told to them. It is just a way to respond. But because he picked the word "brutal" it may mean that he likes being a bit dramatic in his responses to conversation. It could also mean that he uses the expression to feel younger. Many young people say brutal a lot nowadays.


Have you mentioned his choice of words to him? Is he willing to think about using other words just for a change? To make light of it, you could always make a game out of how many one word responses you can both come up with and see who wins. Maybe he'll develop some new words to use instead!


I hope this has helped you,

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
This is helpful. On a slightly different tack, when he mentions individuals' names, he very frequently follows it with "he/she likes me," almost as though he's categorizing people. What do you think?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
He underwent psychological testing a couple of years back, related to his job, and the therapist said he was narcissistic. I'm confused about this. What does it mean, and how would I know if that were true or not?

Mentioning that someone likes him after he says their name could be a sign that he is narcissistic or it could be a way of reassuring himself that he is liked by others.


Narcissism is when someone puts themselves and their needs before others. They will ignore the needs of others to the point of hurting the other person emotionally. They also think highly of themselves.


Here is a link to describe narcissism:


The best way to know if your husband is narcissistic is to either have him evaluated (a second opinion helps) based on him being narcissistic, or to learn as much as you can about narcissism and see if your husband fits the profile.






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Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you. I think the therapist that evaluated him missed the boat.

You're welcome! Glad I could help.




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