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Posted on: June 17, 2021
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In a recent blog post — How To Spot A Narcissist — we talked about personality traits that might indicate a person was a bit of a narcissist. We focused mostly on identifying the tendency in friends and family in general. But what about one family member in particular — your father, whether he’s alive or not — who could have an outsize influence on you? How can you tell if your father is or was a narcissist, and how might that affect you?
Writing for Psychology Today, Mark Banschick, MD, discusses people who, in a moment of self reflection and perhaps self doubt, wonder about how they compare to their father. They might remember their childhood impression of their father: “Mr. Self-Assured. He seemed to have it all – charm, success, popularity. He never seemed to be plagued by self-doubt, unlike you. He was the life of the party, knew everyone and made things happen. You couldn’t get enough of him.”
But now, as an adult, you might reevaluate that childhood perception. Was his confidence actually arrogance? Banschick says that a tendency toward arrogance might indicate narcissism, and says you might look for some or many of the following traits for clues:
If some of those tendencies hit home, you may then want to reflect on how your father’s narcissism affected you. “Daughters of narcissistic fathers,” says Banschick, “often describe feeling ‘unsatiated’ when it comes to getting what they needed from their fathers.” Similarly, “As the son of a narcissistic father you never feel that you can measure up.”
If all of this is beginning to sound too close for comfort, it’s good to note that there are ways in adulthood to deal with a narcissistic father. According to Banschick, it’s best to:
Read the full article here for a more in-depth discussion of narcissistic fathers and their effect on their children.
Posted in: Family Counseling