Are you dating a Narcissistic Sociopath?
Having a partner with Narcissistic Personality Disorder symptoms can have a traumatic effect upon your relationship. Narcissistic sociopaths are arrogant, self-centered, demanding, manipulative and lacking in empathy for others. They let you believe that YOU are the problem, but really it is them. Read on to discover more about the symptoms and signs of narcissism.
Narcissism is derived from Greek mythology. Narcissus was a handsome young man who rejected the advances of the many girls and nymphs who fell in love with him.
Nemesis, the Greek Goddess of Revenge, saw this and tempted Narcissus to a pool of water. Upon seeing his reflection in the water, he fell in love with it. Unable to leave this vision of love, Narcissus eventually pined to death.
Narcissism Dictionary Definitions
General dictionary definitions of narcissism typically include the following attributes:
egoism, vanity, conceit, extreme selfishness, fascination with oneself, excessive self-love, craving for admiration, grandiose view of one’s importance, self centred, self absorbed, self obsessed, lack of empathy.
What is Narcissistic Personality Disorder?
Narcissistic Personality Disorder sufferers are often described as arrogant, self centred, demanding, manipulative, cocky and lacking empathy for others. They have an inflated sense of their own importance and a deep need for admiration. Narcissistic sociopaths believe that they are superior to others and deserve special, V.I.P. treatment. Underneath this confident exterior, however, hides a fragile self esteem which is particularly sensitive to criticism.
An element of narcissism is perfectly natural. We may all display narcissistic traits, to a greater or less extent, without any adverse impact on our social well being. Problems arise however, when the narcissistic behaviour becomes so extreme that it greatly hinders social interaction. At this point, a professional assessment and diagnosis of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) is advisable.
Diagnosing Narcissistic Personality Disorder
Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) is typically diagnosed, by mental health professionals using theDiagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR). Published by the American Psychiatric Association (APA), this manual is used to diagnose a wide range of mental disorders, including personality disorders such as NPD.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder is defined by the DSM-IV-TR as being;
“A pervasive pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration and lack of empathy that begins by early adulthood and is present in a variety of contexts.”
Cluster B Personality Disorders
The DSM-IV-TR segregates the varying personality disorders into 3 clusters, based upon common descriptive similarities. Narcissistic Personality Disorder is classified as a Cluster B personality disorder.
The Cluster B personality disorders comprise:
Antisocial Personality Disorder
Exhibits a pattern of disregard for, and violation of, the rights of others.
Borderline Personality Disorder
Exhibits a pattern of instability in interpersonal relationships, self-image, and affects, and marked impulsivity.
Histrionic Personality Disorder
Exhibits a pattern of excessive emotionality and attention seeking.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder
Exhibits a pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration, and lack of empathy.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder Symptoms
For Narcissistic Personality Disorder to be clinically diagnosed, five or more of the following traits must be exhibited:
- Has a grandiose sense of self- importance (e.g. exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)
- Is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love.
- Believes that he or she is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions).
- Requires excessive admiration.
- Has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favourable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations.
- Is interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends.
- Lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others.
- Is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her.
- Shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Relationships
People with Narcissistic Personality Disorder have difficulty maintaining healthy personal relationships. Narcissistic sociopaths lack empathy and are extremely self-centered. Oblivious to the pain they cause, they are unable to acknowledge any wrong doing on their part, even when presented with incontrovertible evidence.
It is estimated that 50%-75% of those diagnosed with Narcissistic Personality Disorder are male. Women who find themselves in a relationship with a man who has NPD often find the experience to be traumatizing and soul destroying.
If you want to read more about narcissism, there are a wide range of paperback and Kindle books available from Amazon.