What is Narcissistic Personality Disorder?
Personality disorders are conditions in which people have traits that cause them to feel and behave in socially distressing ways, limiting their ability to function in relationships and other areas of their life.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder, or NPD, is a long-term pattern of deviant or abnormal behavior characterized by grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts.
People with NPD often display arrogance, a sense of superiority, and power-seeking behaviors. Narcissistic personality disorder differs from having a strong sense of self-confidence; people with NPD typically value themselves over others to the extent that they disregard the feelings and wishes of others and expect to be treated as superior regardless of their actual achievements. In addition, people with NPD may exhibit fragile egos, an inability to tolerate criticism, and a tendency to belittle others in an attempt to validate their own superiority.
A person may be diagnosed with NPD if they exhibit five (or more) of the following nine traits, as defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
1. Has a grandiose sense of self-importance
For example, the subject exaggerates achievements and talents, or expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements. They give the impression that they are bearing heroic responsibility. They ignore or denigrate the abilities and contributions of others.
A person with this personality trait might tweet something like this:
I am the BEST builder, just look at what I’ve built. Hillary can’t build. Republican candidates can’t build. They don’t have a clue!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 13, 2015
I started my business with very little and built it into a great company, with some of the best real estate assets in the World. Amazing!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 27, 2016
2. Is fixated on fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love.
A person with this trait might tweet something like this:
Sorry losers and haters, but my I.Q. is one of the highest -and you all know it! Please don’t feel so stupid or insecure,it’s not your fault
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 9, 2013
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 27, 2016
3. 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).
Narcissists may think that everyone who is not special and superior is worthless. They may frequently mention their friendships with other, high-status people. A person with this personality trait might tweet something like this:
Congratulations to Tom Brady on yet another great victory- Tom is my friend and a total winner!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 3, 2015
Legendary basketball coach Bobby Knight who has 900+ wins, many championships and a gold medal will be introducing me in Michigan shortly. pic.twitter.com/RZUYpuS5yG
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 31, 2016
4. Requires excessive admiration
Persons with NPD want praise, compliments, deference, and expressions of envy all the time, and they want to be told that everything they do is better than what others can do. Sincerity is not an issue here; all that matter are frequency and volume. A person with this trait might frequently tweet out expressions of praise that have come from others, for example:
“Trump is the most unpredictable, extraordinary, entertaining&massively popular candidate this country has ever seen.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 20, 2016
5. Has a sense of entitlement
Persons with NPD may have an unreasonable expectation of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations. They may expect automatic compliance with their wishes or especially favorable treatment, such as thinking that they should always be able to go first and that other people should stop whatever they’re doing to do what the narcissists wants. They may react with hurt or rage when these expectations are frustrated. A person with this trait might tweet something like the following:
I have a judge in the Trump University civil case, Gonzalo Curiel (San Diego), who is very unfair. An Obama pick. Totally biased-hates Trump
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 30, 2016
It amazes me that other networks seem to treat me so much better than @FoxNews. I brought them the biggest ratings in history, & I get zip!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 9, 2015
6. Is interpersonally exploitative
The subject takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends. Narcissists use other people to get what they want without caring about the cost to the other people. Tweets about the subject may illustrate this personality trait, for example:
How Donald Trump totally destroyed Chris Christie – Used & unwanted. Giuliani? Gingrich? Trump stooges. Sad! https://t.co/D24xOUtM12
— citizenjo (@citizenjo) January 10, 2017
7. Lacks empathy
The subject is unwilling or unable to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others. They may be excessively attuned to the reactions of others, but only if perceived as relevant to themselves. They may over- or underestimate their emotional effect on others.
Mr. Khan, who does not know me, viciously attacked me from the stage of the DNC and is now all over T.V. doing the same – Nice!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 1, 2016
Can’t believe these totally phoney stories, 100% made up by women (many already proven false) and pushed big time by press, have impact!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 17, 2016
8. Is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her.
Someone with this trait might issue tweets like these:
Lindsey Graham is all over T.V., much like failed 47% candidate Mitt Romney. These nasty, angry, jealous failures have ZERO credibility!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 7, 2016
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 17, 2014
9. Shows arrogant, haughty behaviors and attitudes
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 25, 2015
The success of Shark Tank over the years is a total joke compared to the success of The Apprentice, one of the biggest hits in T.V. history.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 11, 2013
I promise you that I’m much smarter than Jonathan Leibowitz – I mean Jon Stewart @TheDailyShow. Who, by the way, is totally overrated.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 24, 2013