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Do You Have a Narcissist in Your Life?

Do you know a person who almost always thinks only of themselves, can twist any situation into one where they are the victim, dominates most, if not all, conversations, and generally blames their problems on others?

If the answer is yes, chances are that you have a narcissistic in your life.

Let’s examine the causes, characteristics, symptoms, and treatment options for a person diagnosed with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD).

​NPD is one of several psychiatric disorders that are referred to as “Cluster B” personality traits. There is no definitive answer as to what causes NPD, but there are many theories. Most psychologists agree that that the patient must be predisposed biologically in order to develop the disorder.

Secondly, the interactions they have with others as a child, their temperament, and their ability to handle stress will factor into the development of this personality disorder. However, there is disagreement over what type of childhood relationships are more likely to be seen in these patients.

While most believe that NPD patients are the result of being overly praised, babied, and pampered as a child, there are some professionals that believe it is a product of abuse and neglect in the younger years. The only way that it can be diagnosed is through an evaluation of symptoms performed by a psychiatric professional. Many clinicians will not diagnosis someone as having NPD until they are through their teenage years.​

Narcissists often have an interesting group of believes that revolve around how much better the world is with them in it. They are often preoccupied with their perceived beauty, intelligence, and success and give off a vibe of extreme arrogance. They tend to think that anyone who is critical of them is simply jealous. They expect others to go along with their ideas and will almost certainly become irritated when they do not. They are inclined to think that they are extremely special and only other special people are worthy of their company.

They are rarely, if ever, pleased with others and most often see others as inferior to them. Overall, they are very dramatic and demanding of attention. They display symptoms that can be quite overwhelming to those around them.

Two primary symptoms include an overpowering need for others to admire them and a complete inability to empathize with others. They almost always dominate conversations and are adept at integrating themselves into other’s problems and tragedies.

The following is a good example of this. Jan just lost her four year old son in an accident. At the funeral she is comforted by many friends and family who are offering their condolences. Her sister, Jill, makes her way into the middle of the group and starts sobbing hysterically about how she “cannot go on without her nephew.” She refers to him as “the love of my life” and wonders aloud “Why did God have to take him from me, his favorite aunt?” Before long the group, including her sister, is trying to console Jill and the grief the mother is feeling is pushed aside. (Little does the group know that Jill saw her nephew just a few times a year and really just ignored him then.)

People diagnosed with NPD often tend to exploit others as well if this works to their advantage. To their defense, they usually do not even realize what they are doing. They truly have a problem with looking outside of themselves.​

Treatment for NPD can be difficult and time consuming. While there are medications that can treat distressing symptoms such as behavioral issues, there are no medications that will magically make these traits disappear. Instead psychotherapy with a trained clinician is a must. This can be very draining on everyone involved as the narcissist is pushed towards recognizing and understanding their condition and developing insight into their behaviors.

The overall goal is for the patient to develop a sense of empathy and more realistic expectations of others. Whether their condition improves or not is almost solely up to the patient. They must be able to realize that they do have a problem and they must be an active participant in therapy sessions.​

It takes a very strong person to be involved in a relationship or friendship with a NPD patient. You must have an understanding of their condition, be willing to listen more frequently than you talk, and understand that you may not make them happy.

Overall compassion is key to surviving this relationship, but never let them know this.

Jeff

Sunday 4th of November 2018

I am a compulsive liar and somewhat of a narcissist. I am struggling to change. I want to change. I have been married 15 years now and put my wife through hell. I have pushed her so far away from me. I think she loves me, but, I don't think she is in love with me any more. I hope that begins to change now. These things are true. What I need is support. I truly hope I can find it. These blogs and posts are helping me realize the way my mind works. I need to re-order the way I think. I hope she does not run away from me as you all seem to be doing. That is the LAST thing I need. I am working on this problem with intention. I am involving my wife in what I am reading and trying to actively modify my behavior. I tell my wife about my plans to overcome these obstacles in my mind and it is helping. I am trying to keep my mouth shut and listen even when I want to talk and talk. I believe I can overcome this....pray for me...pray for my wife. I am in love with her and do not want to hurt her ever again. I know that is most likely unrealistic, but, I hope to dramatically change the way she feels and the way our life has been up to this point, and keep the hurt to a minimum. I feel I have been woken up. I have been blind to myself my entire life. I am ashamed of my behavior and lies thus far. I often lie about things that have no significance. Yesterday I almost did it again, then did do it later. I took a deep breath, stopped, then intentionally told the truth. Later in the evening I lied, but stopped again, took a deep breath, then forced the truth out of my mouth. It is a process. I can do this. I want to do this. I hope everyone here can make an attempt to read about these things WITH their significant other and try to save relationships. I need to do this and I will....I want to! Pray for me please. Pray for us. We have 8 beautiful children and so many memories yet to come. I want to turn the page on the past and run toward happiness....with my wife and family. Any comments and helpful hints would be much appreciated. Thank you to anyone who prays for me and my family...I need it desperately.

Rach

Monday 23rd of July 2018

God I don’t know if he is one or not... I think I’m just paranoid that I’m so shit as a woman he will leave anyway. I’m a people pleaser up to a point and it’s now a year he’s living in my house with 2 sons. My sons father died in very trajic circumstances.... 1 year before. Slowly he has managed to get me to kick out my 19 yr old as he was just living off me... and doing so little it was hard to keep defending him. My possible narc is also very adept at picking out everything that is wrong in my son that is soooo exactly the same as HIM! He doesn’t work either citing illness as the problem when his son of 27 asks him why he’s not working.... he says ‘I’m starting my business soon son.... so yeah yeah yeah it’s gonna be good. BUT I’m the one fronting the money for his business.... iv asked my name be in it but so far not. He asked for us to have joint account... I said nope 👎 not until you marry me 😘... and laughed it off... he’s not mentioned it since either. He’s inconsistent in what he says he’s going to do and what he actually does BUT points out this shortfall ALL the time in others... 🤷🏻‍♀️... why? It’s so insane... I sit there sometimes in utter disbelief at the things he says.... he’s clocked my look of ‘I don’t know what your thinking mate with that look but I don’t care either... I’m right and your wrong.... do I need to bring the hammer 🔨 into this house. After going round like a mad man driving MY car at stupid speeds... making me literally cry with fear at how he was driving... he didn’t understand until I was so distressed in the seat he actually slowed down and hasn’t done it since. But on foot in a shop he was so aggressive verbally and loudly to a poor young bloke who tried to get passed him but my man just stood looking at him for a second then the kid said ... I need to get past thanks.... oh you want to get past do you... straight faced.... then moved one step back to let him through.... then became very loud saying.... cheeky little fucker .... why didn’t he go round... who does he think he is..... then ther s this embarrassing situation ..... the young bloke said.... Jesus man chill out..... I’m sorry.... he then said ‘what did you call me?’ .... then said after he apologised... watch your mouth yea! He has a huge bee in his bonnet about rights to privacy ..... or so he says.... I’m beginning to think he’s just a liar...creating his smoke screens over and over. .....it’s a year... he’s ensconced himself in my whole life.... he’s let slip he’s worried I’m not ready to settle again in the beginning but I’m sure he’s picking up on my vibe... he is extremely perceptive.. of all people, dynamics, etc.... tbh ... I trust him because I’m to skilled to know that believeing him is what he needs to feel.... so honesty I’m now thinking I am more narc than him... although I don’t tell lies, like to be in a equal but at times male dominant relationship....the narcissist is me I think 😔

Valerie

Sunday 26th of February 2017

I was raised by a narcissistic sociopath. He was my step father but I didn't know that until just a few years ago. I have gone "no contact" with both he and my mother. She has been his partner in crime for 62 years. She doesn't realize what he is. She just supports him. I tried communicating with just my mother for a few years after I knew what he was but he was constantly manipulating our conversations either by phone or letters. I am the oldest of 3 children and my brothers and I are discovering how awful our childhood really was. We were constantly being manipulated but as a child you don't realize you are being manipulated. It seems normal to you. But the problem now is, since I have gone no contact, they are trying to get to me through my sons, who are both in their 30s and have families of their own. I have been totally honest with my boys about their grandparents but this man has such a hold on them. He was always the "fun" one and they gravitated toward him. I hate this but they are grown men. All I can do is warn them like I have and they have to make their own decisions. I just hate to see them hurt as I and my husband and my brothers have been by these people. Now he is luring them in by telling them that he has several illnesses and that they need to help him. He is lying. He has no such illnesses but he should win an Academy award for his performances. This is terribly difficult for my family and my brothers and their families. But they, our parents, don't care. As long as they get what they want. That's all that matters to them.

AGDinCA

Tuesday 21st of February 2017

Most of the above comments address romantic relationships. My situation is different and inescapable: I have recently realized that my son has narcissistic personality disorder.

I confiscated his phone after busting him (for the third time) for marijuana possession (which he is apparently selling, having obtained a fake ID) and found countless texts, private tweets and emails FULL of unbelievable lies. Ridiculous lies that serve absolutely no purpose. It was like realizing I had been living with a complete stranger, yet he is my son. I had caught him in a few lies over the past few years, but I had no idea how deep the problem went. Sadly, I made this discovery a little too late.

Unfortunately, my son just turned 18 last month and I can't force him into therapy. Our life is at a standstill. I'm at a complete loss. And, to add insult to injury, apparently this disorder is all my fault. I wasn't hard enough on him, or I said too many nice things...that's what all the textbooks are telling me, anyway.

Sigh...what's a mother to do?

Gelisgi

Friday 15th of December 2017

I feel you. I have an 18 year old child whom we have come to understand is a full blown narcissist. She was in therapy when she was younger. Completely charmed every therapist. She did a couple weeks in a mental hospital. They were not charmed. But she’s 18 now. She won’t consider therapy any longer. We are truly at the end of our rope. We, too, are guilty of having been too nice and supportive of her as a child. It’s incredible the lies she tells. It’s even more incredible to know that she truly believes them. I understand how broken hearted you are. We’re there too. Take back what you can of your life. I know it’s time to make my kid get out on her own and try to live without our loving support, which winds up being only enabling. Maybe life out of the nest will show her that she needs therapy. God bless you in your efforts to cope.

Judy

Thursday 22nd of December 2016

I met one