Narcissism and devaluing others: An exploration of impaired control over drinking as a mediating mechanism of alcohol-related problems

Finding the appropriate mental health and addiction professionals is the next hurdle. People with AUD can also be self-serving, experience grandiose thinking, and have trouble recognizing when it’s time to seek help. They are also known to engage in exploitative or manipulative behaviors as a way of maintaining their addiction.

  • Narcissistic personality disorder and alcoholism are co-occurring disorders.
  • Doing so would risk encountering the deep shame and emptiness they carry.
  • Alcoholics might cry about the costs of their addiction, but it doesn’t mean anything because they still won’t stop drinking.

Although people with AUD may relapse or have treatment setbacks, they can recover from the disorder. Learning healthy coping strategies can help them remain sober when they face triggers. To treat dual diagnosis, people will receive treatment options for both NPD and AUD. Individuals can discuss how NPD and AUD can affect the other with their doctor. With AUD, a person’s behavior may change depending on whether they are sober or not. An individual with NPD will display a consistent pattern of narcissistic behavior.

The Link Between Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Alcoholism

Our results show that while grandiose-fantasy (i.e., desire for special recognition) was negatively linked to IC, devaluing was positively linked to IC. In addition, men scored higher on exploitativeness (i.e., interpersonally manipulative for personal gain) than women. We conducted mediational analysis with asymmetric confidence intervals and a bias-corrected bootstrap technique.

Mastery mediated BAS, BAS-RI, and Reward Reactivity (BAS-RR) with relationship satisfaction. Additionally, revised Behavioral Inhibition System and Impulsivity (BAS-IMP) negatively predicted relationship satisfaction. Individuals with high reward sensitivity and mastery may put more cognitive effort into a romantic relationship believing it is a goal that will reward them with happiness. This study was conceived by the idea that there exist different kinds of cognitive style-based, task competencies that have implications for task motivation and cognitive performance on creative problem-solving tasks/insight. Specifically, the relationships among the Assimilator–Explorer styles , experimentally manipulated task competence for each style, and performance on insight tasks was examined. A total of 264 participants with a mean age of 17.4 years completed a cognitive style test, two measures of task motivation, and three practical construction-type insight tasks.

Entitlement, exploitativeness, and reasoning about everyday transgressions: A social domain analysis

Narcissists don’t enter a room saying Hi, Im Jack, Im a narcissist. However, their dramatic, manipulative or entitled behaviors often announce their narcissism beyond a doubt. To an alcoholic narcissist, drinking becomes one of their layers of defense. Treatment of NPD consists of cognitive-behavioral therapy, psychotherapy, and medications. The treatment paths for both disorders are similar to each other. Individuals can go through talk therapy, developing social skills and targeting emotional triggers.

These patients tend to exhaust the resources of the therapeutic staff and evoke feelings of anger, frustration and tiredness in therapists. Therefore, therapists dealing with such conditions should be highly skilled professionals with extensive education and training on psychopathology and psychotherapy of both personality disorders and addiction. Continuous supervision or consultation is extremely helpful for those providing treatment for this group of patients (84, 94-95). Treatment of alcoholics with personality pathology should be long-term by using a variety of settings, therapeutic techniques and skills . It is useful to remember Vaillant’s statement that “as addiction and personality are dynamic, addicts with personality disorders can overcome their difficulties with time and appropriate help” . Treatment for co-occurring alcoholism and narcissistic personality disorder is essential to help the individual recover from both conditions.

Are Alcoholics Narcissists?

However, treatments like psychotherapy, group support, and self-care strategies can help people with either condition feel much better. Although alcohol misuse and AUD can cause someone to display narcissist-like behavior, this behavior might change when they’re sober or in recovery. The behavior might also only appear when their misuse began. In fact, some research suggests that alcohol misuse might be more common among people who have narcissistic tendencies. To get the support you deserve, you’re going to need to seek professional help.

  • Although the concept of character pathology according to this model is not supported by the current scientific views, the idea of a ‘weak character’ is still widely held among the public .
  • Alcoholics are not always narcissists, and narcissists aren’t always alcoholics.
  • Alcoholism can exacerbate the symptoms of narcissism and make them more pronounced, leading to impulsive behavior, difficulty expressing emotions, and an inability to take responsibility for one’s actions.
  • Narcissists can become alcoholics and alcoholics can be particularly narcissistic when drunk.
  • Mediational tests showed that higher levels of grandiose-fantasy were indirectly related to fewer alcohol-related problems through less IC and less heavy-episodic drinking.
  • Narcissisminvolves feelings of self-importance and difficulty accepting fault for one’s mistakes.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition (DSM-5) uses “alcohol use disorder” as the official term for alcoholism. An individual is diagnosed with AUD if they meet at least 2 of 11 criteria of DSM-5. This type is usually the result of childhood abuse or neglect. People with this type are much more sensitive, and narcissistic behavior helps protect them from feelings of being inadequate. Although they go between feeling superior and inferior to others, they feel offended or anxious when other people don’t treat them as if they’re special.


Their selfishness, lying and disregard for the pain they cause their loved ones may come across as narcissistic. But a narcissist is someone who feels more important than others and demands to be seen as such, either verbally or through their actions. A narcissist may use their addiction as a narcissism and alcoholism way to justify their behavior. They might say all alcoholics lie, that their addiction causes them to emotionally shut-off and they can’t be blamed for their drinking because it is an addiction. NuView Treatment Center is a top leading Los Angeles outpatient alcohol and drug rehab program.

What personality disorder is associated with alcoholism?

Similarly, the types of personality disorders, including their combinations, found to be related to alcoholism are very heterogeneous. The most consistent have been: histrionic/dependent, paranoid, dependent/paranoid/ obsessive-compulsive, narcissistic/avoidant, antisocial, borderline, and avoidant/borderline (54).

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