Narcissism is a word that seems to get thrown around an awful lot lately.
While it seems like a great descriptor for the arrogant or ego-bound, it’s actually a pretty severe personality disorder that has deep and profound effects on the lives on those closest to the narcissist.
Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), the disambiguation of “narcissism”, is “a mental condition in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for excessive attention and admiration, troubled relationships, and a lack of empathy for others. But behind this mask of extreme confidence lies a fragile self-esteem that’s vulnerable to the slightest criticism.” This is the definition set forth by the Mayo Clinic; it’s used by mental health professionals, therapists, and counselors the world over to diagnose this particularly tough personality disorder.
Narcissists are such good manipulators though, sometimes, it can be really difficult to tell if your partner, parent, child, sibling or any other loved ones in your life are true narcissists.
So we’ve assembled a laundry list of questions designed to help you sort it out. Here we go!
1. Does your loved one lie to you?
2. Does your loved one go on and on about how incredible and amazing they are/their life is and contrast it to yous life, which they characterize as petty and miserable?
3. Does your loved one never ask you about your emotions/opinions/day/life?
4. Does your loved one make you feel worthless or like you’re not good enough?
5. Are they constantly telling you what to do, and how to behave?
6. Do they seem uninterested in your life/goals/hopes/dreams?
7. Is it always about your loved one’s time, money, emotions, wishes and demands?
8. Does this person carry grudges against everyone, including you?
9. Do they fail to express their emotions or even try to deny them?
10. Is your loved one a person who refuses to be accountable for their manipulative and rude behavior?
11. Are they convinced that they are always right?
12. If something goes wrong, does your loved one automatically blame you?
14. Have you heard someone close to you say that there is something odd or strange about your loved one?
15. Does your loved one tend to distort the truth while telling stories to make themselves look good in the eyes of others?
16. If this person is your partner, are your children okay with them, or is it really uncomfortable for them to spend time with them?
17. If this person is your partner, do you know that your children are trying to protect themselves from your partner my limiting the information they share with them?
18. If this person is your partner, do they skip, miss or limit involvement in the childrens’ activities if they don’t value their efforts enough?
19. If this person is your partner, do they push your children towards activities that meet their approval and actively push them away from activities that they themselves don’t like?
20. Does your loved one hate or mistrust everyone?
21. Are you afraid of your loved one?
22. Does your loved one lack empathy?
23. Do you feel threatened around this person?
24. Does this person act ridiculously jealous of you for no apparent reason?
25. When you try to talk with them about your problems, does your loved one change the subject so that you end up talking about their problems?
26. After breaking ties with this person, do they continue to harrass and exploit you?
27. Does your loved one seem to not know the difference between wrong and right? Do they lack a grounded value system?
28. Is your loved one all about image and how others perceive them?
29. Is your loved one all about power and control?
30. Do they mercilessly take advantage of other people?
31. Does this person desperately try to compete with you?
32. Are they too judgmental and critical when it comes to you and other people?
33. Does your loved one act as if the world revolves around them?
34. If you had a chance to break ties with this person and never, ever come back, would you do it?
35. Have you asked if this person really loves you? Have you asked yourself, truly?
Treatment is available for NPD, of course, usually in the form of talk therapy while occasionally employing some other techniques. You can learn more about treatment and therapy for those suffering from NPD here.