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Narcissistic personality disorder


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I feels like the whole planet has been getting a crash course in NPD these past couple years. I thought I'd link a few ressources here for those who have been learning along but didn't realize that this was a known pathology:

 

Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) is a personality disorder with a long-term pattern of abnormal behavior characterized by exaggerated feelings of self-importance, an excessive need for admiration, and a lack of empathy. [...]

 

The DSM-5 indicates that persons with NPD usually display some or all of the following symptoms, typically without the commensurate qualities or accomplishments:

 

1. Grandiosity with expectations of superior treatment from other people

2. Fixated on fantasies of power, success, intelligence, attractiveness, etc.

3. Self-perception of being unique, superior, and associated with high-status people and institutions

4. Needing continual admiration from others

5. Sense of entitlement to special treatment and to obedience from others

6. Exploitative of others to achieve personal gain

7. Unwilling to empathize with the feelings, wishes, and needs of other people

8. Intensely envious of others, and the belief that others are equally envious of them

9. Pompous and arrogant demeanor

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narcissistic_personality_disorder

 

To understand the condition, the concept of "narcissistic supply" must be understood:

 

The Primary Narcissistic Supply is attention, in both its public forms (fame, notoriety, infamy, celebrity) and its private, interpersonal, forms (adoration, adulation, applause, fear, repulsion). It is important to understand that attention of any kind - positive or negative - constitutes Primary Narcissistic Supply. Infamy is as sought after as fame, being notorious is as good as being renowned.

 

To the narcissist his "achievements" can be imaginary, fictitious, or only apparent, as long as others believe in them. Appearances count more than substance, what matters is not the truth but its perception.

 

Triggers of Primary Narcissistic Supply include, apart from being famous (celebrity, notoriety, fame, infamy) - having an air of mystique (when the narcissist is considered to be mysterious), having sex and deriving from it a sense of masculinity/virility/femininity, and being close or connected to political, financial, military, or spiritual power or authority or yielding them.

 

https://www.healthyplace.com/personality-disorders/malignant-self-love/narcissists-narcissistic-supply-and-sources-of-supply

 

A narcissistic personality disorder causes problems in many areas of life, such as relationships, work, school or financial affairs. People with narcissistic personality disorder may be generally unhappy and disappointed when they're not given the special favors or admiration they believe they deserve. They may find their relationships unfulfilling, and others may not enjoy being around them.

 

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/narcissistic-personality-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20366662

 

(I know some posters here will try to make this about politics, but I have no interest in discussing that here. I think the psychology itself is interesting and, if better understood by more people, maybe we wouldn't collectively fall as easily for the tricks employed by narcissists to gather their supply.)

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I feels like the whole planet has been getting a crash course in NPD these past couple years.

 

 

I think the psychology itself is interesting and, if better understood by more people, maybe we wouldn't collectively fall as easily for the tricks employed by narcissists to gather their supply.

 

Another interesting aspect is that people afflicted with such disorders can end up in powerful positions. One way to describe this is the "dark triad" that is often associated with "dark" leadership. I would say many CEOs have such profile, at least partially.

 

There are "tricks" at the individual level but would like to read your thoughts on how to address this collectively.

http://observer.com/2016/01/how-to-deal-with-a-narcissist-5-secrets-backed-by-research/

Don’t fight narcissism, starve it?

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There are "tricks" at the individual level but would like to read your thoughts on how to address this collectively.

http://observer.com/2016/01/how-to-deal-with-a-narcissist-5-secrets-backed-by-research/

Don’t fight narcissism, starve it?

 

I think on a collective level, just being aware of these things will help. We have certain expectations from "normal" people that fail with these types of personalities. Normal people can't help but show signs of shame in certain situations, and evolutionarily, it's a pretty good way to detect when someone has been caught. But the NPD might not show any and fool this "detector". Most normal people don't constantly lie without apparent motivation, so we don't constantly scrutinize everything they say, which means that the NPD's lies can be believed because "why would someone lie about this?", most people can't fake confidence that well while NPDs live in a state of perpetual over-confidence, etc.

 

It's kind of like when you know what an abusive relationship looks like (or even the recent mainstreaming of discussing what sexual harassement is and what can be done about it), it's easier to recognize the signs and avoid it (not 100% of the time, but certainly easier than if you have no idea and can't do any pattern matching). I think maybe if knowledge about these types of personalities was more widespread, they'd have a harder time fooling people. I'm certainly surprised that there's no been more discussions of them in the media considering... Maybe it's just wishful thinking on my part, though.

 

The internet certainly gives a wider playground and more narcissistic supply to the NPD, but hopefully it also makes it easier to spread the information that will help counter him/her over time. In other words, maybe there will be a kind of immune reaction, antigens will be created, and over time, a societal adaptation will take place.

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About 21% of CEOs are psychopaths.  Shouldn't we worry about them as well?

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/09/13/1-in-5-ceos-are-psychopaths-australian-study-finds/

 

Yes, if they're causing harm, certainly.

 

btw, I don't know how accurate these types of studies are and what the actual ratio is, but I wouldn't be surprised if the percentage was higher than in the general population.

 

Not all psychopaths are antisocial.

 

Interesting read:

 

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/the-neuroscientist-who-discovered-he-was-a-psychopath-180947814/

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About 21% of CEOs are psychopaths.  Shouldn't we worry about them as well?

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/09/13/1-in-5-ceos-are-psychopaths-australian-study-finds/

 

Yes, if they're causing harm, certainly.

 

btw, I don't know how accurate these types of studies are and what the actual ratio is, but I wouldn't be surprised if the percentage was higher than in the general population.

 

Not all psychopaths are antisocial.

 

Interesting read:

 

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/the-neuroscientist-who-discovered-he-was-a-psychopath-180947814/

 

I'm of the belief that having a small proportion of people with psychopathy or even narcissism disorder (although I can't think of a justification for that but I'm sure there is one), is beneficial to society.  For example, I think most normal people would feel very hesitant to exploit third world countries with sweatshops for cheap labor, but if no one does stuff like that, there is never any investment in those countries as that is the first step to an educated workforce and a country with infrastructure to produce more advanced products. 

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Guest cherzeca

1. Grandiosity with expectations of superior treatment from other people

well if not for me then for who?

2. Fixated on fantasies of power, success, intelligence, attractiveness, etc.

who says fantasy?

3. Self-perception of being unique, superior, and associated with high-status people and institutions

well, I am unique

4. Needing continual admiration from others

plead guilty, as should all

5. Sense of entitlement to special treatment and to obedience from others

entitlement? nah, I work for my money.

6. Exploitative of others to achieve personal gain

maybe from their perspective

7. Unwilling to empathize with the feelings, wishes, and needs of other people

empathy is overrated

8. Intensely envious of others, and the belief that others are equally envious of them

well of course others are envious of me

9. Pompous and arrogant demeanor

pomp yes, but also circumstance

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I'm of the belief that having a small proportion of people with psychopathy or even narcissism disorder (although I can't think of a justification for that but I'm sure there is one), is beneficial to society.  For example, I think most normal people would feel very hesitant to exploit third world countries with sweatshops for cheap labor, but if no one does stuff like that, there is never any investment in those countries as that is the first step to an educated workforce and a country with infrastructure to produce more advanced products.

 

I don't think that even requires any pathological condition. Just to be removed enough from the situation by distance (emotional and geographical).

 

People do a lot of things indirectly that they wouldn't do directly.

 

Drone operators blowing people up from halfway around the world, but they wouldn't knife them in the heart if the very same people were tied up on a chair in front of them. Doesn't make them psychopaths or NPDs, just human.

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I'm of the belief that having a small proportion of people with psychopathy or even narcissism disorder (although I can't think of a justification for that but I'm sure there is one), is beneficial to society.  For example, I think most normal people would feel very hesitant to exploit third world countries with sweatshops for cheap labor, but if no one does stuff like that, there is never any investment in those countries as that is the first step to an educated workforce and a country with infrastructure to produce more advanced products.

 

I don't think that even requires any pathological condition. Just to be removed enough from the situation by distance (emotional and geographical).

 

People do a lot of things indirectly that they wouldn't do directly.

 

Drone operators blowing people up from halfway around the world, but they wouldn't knife them in the heart if the very same people were tied up on a chair in front of them. Doesn't make them psychopaths or NPDs, just human.

 

Sure.  Maybe that example was bad but sometimes its beneficial for society when a company does anything it can to benefit itself even when it involves moral grey areas.  Basically there are externalities (both positive and negative) to having a really cutthroat company.  Now not every company in the industry should be cutthroat,  as there are advantages to working together,  but if everyone is focused on getting along, there will be a lot of low hanging fruit that a cutthroat competitor can pick that would go unpicked. 

 

I also dont think pathology is binary.  Usually it's a spectrum where people get less and less empathetic and at some point we draw the line.  Would I be able to handle being a drown pilot or even a combat soldier, I dont know I'm very squamish about killing things and don't even eat meat.  At the same time an I thankful there are some people with less hangups about those things than me: yes.  At some point and in some situations, I think that bleeds into being thankful there are some psychopaths out there that companies out there are being efficiently run and that people are being fired that arent needed for example, even if I would find it difficult to do that myself. 

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Sure.  Maybe that example was bad but sometimes its beneficial for society when a company does anything it can to benefit itself even when it involves moral grey areas.  Basically there are externalities (both positive and negative) to having a really cutthroat company.  Now not every company in the industry should be cutthroat,  as there are advantages to working together,  but if everyone is focused on getting along, there will be a lot of low hanging fruit that a cutthroat competitor can pick that would go unpicked. 

 

I also dont think pathology is binary.  Usually it's a spectrum where people get less and less empathetic and at some point we draw the line.  Would I be able to handle being a drown pilot or even a combat soldier, I dont know I'm very squamish about killing things and don't even eat meat.  At the same time an I thankful there are some people with less hangups about those things than me: yes.  At some point and in some situations, I think that bleeds into being thankful there are some psychopaths out there that companies out there are being efficiently run and that people are being fired that arent needed for example, even if I would find it difficult to do that myself.

 

I agree with a lot of that, I just think it's a different discussion.

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"Huge" .  "Bigly" .

 

There is a subtype of narcissist with histrionic features.  Pathological lying, affairs with exotic partners...

 

Amorous narcissist Including histrionicfeatures. Sexually seductive, enticing, beguiling, tantalizing; glib and clever; disinclined to real intimacy; indulges hedonistic desires; bewitches and inveigles others; pathological lying and swindling. Tends to have many affairs, often with exotic partners.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narcissism

 

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Come on guys!  Stop dancing around the issue.

 

In The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, a collection of essays by mental health professionals:

 

"Contributors to the book entertain the possibility of applying a variety of diagnoses and descriptions to the President. Philip Zimbardo, who is best known for his Stanford Prison Experiment, and his co-author, Rosemary Sword, propose that Trump is an “extreme present hedonist.” He may also be a sociopath, a malignant narcissist, borderline, on the bipolar spectrum, a hypomanic, suffering from delusional disorder, or cognitively impaired. None of these conditions is a novelty in the Oval

Office" .

 

He's also apparently a psychopath on par with Hitler.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-psychopath-researcher-oxford-university-kevin-dutton-a7204706.html

 

And a sociopath.

https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2016/07/trump-and-sociopathy/491966/

 

But let's not stop there.

 

"None of this is secret, special knowledge—it is all known to the people who voted for him. We might ask what’s wrong with them rather than what’s wrong with him.

 

Thomas Singer, a psychiatrist and Jungian psychoanalyst from San Francisco, suggests that the election reflects “a woundedness at the core of the American group Self,” with Trump offering protection from further injury and even a cure for the wound. The conversation turns, as it must, from diagnosing the President to diagnosing the people who voted for him. That has the effect of making Trump appear normal—in the sense that, psychologically, he is offering his voters what they want and need."

https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/diagnosing-donald-trump

 

 

 

 

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"None of this is secret, special knowledge—it is all known to the people who voted for him. We might ask what’s wrong with them rather than what’s wrong with him.

 

I don't think that's quite true. I don't think people understood. The whole Scott Adams argument that he's playing a role to get what he wants but he's actually not really like that and actually quite smart, etc.. No, he's actually that shallow and petty and thin skinned (spending years circling his small hands in gold marker on magazine covers and emailing it to a journalist who once mentioned he had small hands).

 

But that's not even for most people. The Adams rationalizations worked well on the more intellectual bunch who needed a narrative to believe, but I think most people don't do research on forums and read long New Yorker profiles or whatever. They just think "he's a billionaire, so he must be a good businessman, right, and he constantly talks about all his successes, and most people aren't liars, so it's probably true that he's that smart and successful". The used car salesman tactics actually work if you do them long enough and consistently enough, and Trump's whole life has been that act.

 

Damn, you've dragged me into it... Trolling successful I guess?

 

Anyways.

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Thank you for your post.  I can tell you genuinely believe in what your doing and I can respect your position.

I do, however, have problems with it.

 

I'm light of the wide dispersion of "diagnoses" shown above I hope you can understand my reluctance to put tremendous faith in any diagnosis made from afar.

 

I readily concede that a portion of the psychological community have adopted a "duty to warn" position.  But that isn't the official position of the medical profession.

 

This article does a good job of outlining the positions.

https://www.usnews.com/news/the-report/articles/2017-04-21/mental-health-professionals-debate-ethics-in-the-age-of-trump

 

My biggest concern in this environment is the weaponization of a mental health diagnosis to either deprive an opponent of an  election win or to hinder the function of an administration.

 

 

 

 

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I'm light of the wide dispersion of "diagnoses" shown above I hope you can understand my reluctance to put tremendous faith in any diagnosis made from afar.

 

So a potential question:

 

Should a group rely on expert opinions (diagnosis at a distance) and what are the circumstances that could allow a group to make a good collective decision?

 

If you read Gustave Le Bon's The Crowd, the crowd will tend to act on instinct (gut feelings), to skip rationality, to be influenced by superficiality and perhaps to become less civilized versus the members of the group taken individually. So, the crowd could be mesmerized.

 

At the other extreme, if you read James Surowiecki's The Wisdom of Crowds, given a certain level of efficient aggregation of diverse, independent and individual private opinions, intelligent collective decision making is the likely outcome.

 

The "truth" is probably somewhere along the spectrum and I would say that collective intelligence may be somewhat cyclical. Individually, we have ingredients for destruction and for enlightenment and I think this applies to groups as well.

 

Perhaps optimist but I would submit that the crowd along human history, even if not experts in psychiatric diagnoses, has been able, mostly, to figure out where to place its confidence. Mistakes have been made though and History is not fully "efficient".

 

What to do?

 

I would say that the group does not need conditions to reach unanimity, it needs an environment that allows a critical mass to meet the conditions defined by Surowiecki.

 

I would add that basic civic education, credible media (traditional and social, with civility) and balanced powers within a sound institutional framework are likely essential aggregating elements.

 

If life puts someone with a manipulative NPD on your path, you can try to adapt or put a distance. Do not expect to change the person.

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Thank you for your post.  I can tell you genuinely believe in what your doing and I can respect your position.

I do, however, have problems with it.

 

I'm light of the wide dispersion of "diagnoses" shown above I hope you can understand my reluctance to put tremendous faith in any diagnosis made from afar.

 

I readily concede that a portion of the psychological community have adopted a "duty to warn" position.  But that isn't the official position of the medical profession.

 

This article does a good job of outlining the positions.

https://www.usnews.com/news/the-report/articles/2017-04-21/mental-health-professionals-debate-ethics-in-the-age-of-trump

 

My biggest concern in this environment is the weaponization of a mental health diagnosis to either deprive an opponent of an  election win or to hinder the function of an administration.

 

I totally understand that position, and it's usually the right one. But the exception that confirms the rule is someone like Trump who has been so exactly textbook NPD in public view for decades and decades that his photo could basically be used in the DSM. If Trump was shown as a fictional character in a movie he'd seem like a caricature (in Back to the Future 2, the Biff in the dark future that runs the town is based on Trump, with his paintings of himself and his Trumpian office, and he seems way over the top), yet here we are in real life.

 

A lot of other people have narcissistic tendencies in politics and hollywood and business, but it's usually kind of hard to tell or just partial or just kind of leaning that way on the spectrum. Usually we lack data (we see actors a lot, but rarely as themselves).

 

In this case, I think it would be burying my head in the sand and irrational to pretend this isn't the case just because I don't have some official paper saying that's what he is. It's like if you've known someone for a long time who is clearly deeply autistic or has down syndrome or is dumb as a brick (IQ below 60). Do you tell yourself that you can't recognize what you're seeing because you don't have an official diagnosis and pretend nothing is going on, or do you trust your judgement? Well, in this case it's not just my judgement, it's basically almost everybody who's been around him who describes these traits (ie. he's not just playing a character on TV and then reverting to a more typical personality-type).

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  • 3 weeks later...

 

About the writer:

Christian who was born-again in 1983. Yeshua is my life. Writing about Him is my passion. My subject matter varies. Sometimes I write on Bible Prophecy.

Enough said....

 

That's how you refute his arguments?

 

He is a she. I doubt you read that nonsense she wrote, you just googled it and threw it out here. I at least read enough to conclude that she has an agenda and no qualification. She complains about FB taking her page down, because as you know, the conspiracy runs deep.

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