What is a narcissistic pervert?
It seems like we hear about narcissistic perverts pretty often these days. They are charming manipulators who often turn their partners’ or families’ lives into hell. So, are we all surrounded by narcissistic perverts?
The term has its origins in psychoanalysis. It was coined in the 1980s and began to get more attention at the start of the 21st century. Narcissus was a mythical figure from ancient Greek times, known for his pride and beauty. He met his demise when gazing into his own reflection in a pool of water. He became so entranced that he ended up drowning without realising what was happening.
Narcissistic perverts are characterised as having a negative self-image. They lie to and belittle others in order to increase their own self-esteem. They act like they are better than others, need to be admired and are conscious of their manipulation skills, all the while feeling no empathy when seeing others suffer.
More often than not, narcissistic perverts are male. They may cause harm to their romantic partner, but it could also be a work colleague, friend or family member. The causes of this behaviour haven’t been identified, but psychologists believe an overprotected childhood, with high expectations, may be a cause. On the other hand, narcissistic perverts could also have been abused or neglected as children.
There’s no need to overreact and fear encountering narcissistic perverts everywhere. The description has become prominent in popular psychology, often discussed in the media. It was also one of the most searched terms on Google in 2019. Nevertheless, they’re not hanging out on every street corner. The term is also not formally recognised in psychiatry, so there are no official figures on how many narcissistic perverts are really out there. But the similar sounding narcissistic personality disorder only affects between 0.5 and 1% of the general population. We might be too quick to label people, when they display one or more character traits which are synonymous with this disorder.