Sunday, October 2, 2016

red flags of covert narcissism?

Lately with Donald Trump running for President of the United States, there has been a lot of talk about narcissism. Trump’s flagrant displays are typical of overt narcissism. But there is another, more insidious, kind of covert narcissism which is just as (if not more) dangerous because it is skillfully concealed behind a deliberately cultivated mask of kindness.

Covert narcissists use kindness and caring to seduce and charm. They feed off making others feel good and cared for, not because it makes them happy but because it makes them feel strong. They hunger for power, and love to stir up emotions, getting off on others' reactions which they take as testimony to their profound influence. Once influence is secured, they get bored and withdraw because, like all narcissists, they are unable to form (and uninterested in forming) deeper attachments.

An overt narcissist can be easily spotted among lawyers, politicians and cops. He is the one acting belligerent, ugly and mean. But the covert hides out among the clergy, doctors, caregivers, masseurs, actors, chefs or others whose unsavoury intentions may be disguised, like the witch in her candy house or the wolf in grandma's clothing. This provides the perfect opportunity to groom unsuspecting targets before they go in for the kill.

The red flags of overt narcissism are obvious, that is why they are overt: grandiosity, self-importance, superficiality, lack of sensitivity to others’ feelings. But what are the red flags of the covert?

A covert red flag is an oxymoron.  

But counterfeit kindness cannot be sustained.  Beware of those who love too much too soon, or who become intimate and cultivate your dependency on them too quickly. Intimacy fosters bonds that are hard to break. This is the covert plan.


  1. "My, what big teeth you have Grandma!"

  2. Falling into a relationship with a covert narcissist was one of the easiest things I've done and the hardest things I've had to get myself out of. The most important red flag I have learned to be aware of is love-bombing early in the relationship.

  3. .... you may find yourself with an underlying sense of unease you keep discounting as the evidence to your eyes is all positive ! ..... I have now learnt the hard way that if your gut and your head disagree.... for your own sake listen to your gut !

    1. ... those butterflies in your stomach may not mean LOVE but legitimate fear !

    2. I specialize in the field of narcissistic behavior. I have been involved romantically with a narcissist was hell getting out. My mother is a malignant narcissist. Spent most of my life recovering from the damage and learning learning learning.Having said all of that, I voted for Trump, have not one regret, and will vote for him again. I do not see Trump as a NPD. He has accomplished all he has set out to do in life. He admitted his flaws and errors and I truly believe loves his family. Some times we mistake great confidence and self esteem with big egos. This is a great example. A true narcissist will skillfully cover up his manipulations.i could go on and on about the differences using Trump as a perfect example. I will leave that to all of you to do your own work with our perfect target, Trump.