A study conducted showed 1 in 16 Americans suffers from a narcissistic personality disorder. Sometimes it can be difficult to identify who has a narcissistic trait and who suffers from a disorder. Here are a few different common types of narcissism, if you recognize any in people you know, then the best thing you can do is begin to distance yourself from that person.
Vulnerable Narcissists tend to be quiet, sensitive, and shy which makes them a little harder to spot. These tendencies usually stem from feelings of self hatred and low self esteem. These types of narcissists will overcompensate and put on a mask to merge their identities with those who are idolized. They will use emotional manipulation tactics in order to secure sympathy and attention from others without any regard for their victims. Vulnerable Narcissists are primarily motivated by a fear of rejection and lack an ability to authentically love and care for others. They will constantly seek approval, sympathy, and attention from others, behavior which is really fueled by their inferiority complex.
Invulnerable Narcissists reflect the traditional image of what you expect a narcissist to be; A highly self-confident, cold, and un-empathetic person. Unlike Vulnerable Narcissists, they are thick-skinned and shamelessly seek for power, glory, recognition, and pleasure. They often suffer from god complexes, believing themselves to be far superior to everyone else – and they have a pathological need to make that known.
Both types share similar traits such as using others to fuel their narcissistic delusions, blaming and criticizing, lack of empathy, unfaithfulness and the need for power.
Both Vulnerable and Invulnerable Narcissistic personality types can be further broken down into a few different (unofficial) personality types. Some narcissists may even have a few traits from each.
The Heart Breaker
Heart breakers measure their self-worth and grandiosity by how many sexual conquests they’ve accomplished. This type of person is known for using his or her charm to ensnare others with flattery, but then quickly dispose of them once they’ve fulfilled their purpose, which is almost always related to sex or status. The heart breaker is the ultimate relationship con artist. At first glance, they appear highly attractive and alluring, but underneath they are only out to please and satiate their own needs and desires.
The Big Shot
The big shot loves to brag about their achievements! They often create a larger than life illusion of themselves in order to attract attention and impress others. This behavior is driven to compensate for past trauma. In reality, big shots are extremely sensitive to criticism and negative comments from others. They feel a deep need to gain power and control over every aspect of their lives and will hunt out emotionally vulnerable people to serve as their audience as they act out their lives. Emotional abuse is a common tactic used for this type of narcissist in order to remain in control of their relationships.
Elitists are convinced that they are more superior in every aspect than everyone around them. They carry an air of arrogance and pretentiousness in their personality and believe that they deserve special treatment due to their achievements or background. This could simply be the fact that they were born into a good family. This sense of entitlement permeates every aspect of their life from their work, to their relationships. Be careful, because elitists will be as cut throat as needed to be the “best and prove themselves superior at all times, even if it is at the expense of others.
Out of all the types of narcissism, this is the most dangerous. The behavior of malicious narcissists often overlaps with that of psychopaths and those with antisocial personality disorder. These people love chaos and feed off the negative outcomes they create. They enjoy talking behind people’s backs and creating conflict where there wasn’t any. This type of narcissist can often be found in prisons, gangs, and drug rehabilitation centers, although many manage to keep themselves away from the law.
Do You Recognize These Types of Narcissism?
It’s difficult to deal with narcissistic people in your life. The key is to understand this condition and know how to distance yourself. Here is a link to some more information on Narcissism and some specific signs to watch out for.