Being close with an alcoholic narcissist can be emotionally draining, and it’s crucial to take care of yourself. Narcissists create destruction in their own lives due to a lack of empathy in their relationships. Alcoholics can do damage because their addiction affects their behavior and the way they treat people. Evans E, Grella C, Washington D, Upchurch Sober House D. Gender and race/ethnic differences in the persistence of alcohol, drug, and poly-substance use disorders. Vulnerable narcissism was a significant predictor of problem recognition. This means that vulnerable narcissists tended to recognize the existence of alcohol problems. Future research could test some of these alternative explanations.

narcissism and alcohol abuse

345 college students (28% male, 72% female) from a Midwestern university were recruited from undergraduate psychology courses from April 2015 to October 2016. Recognize that you don’t cause someone else’s narcissism or addiction. Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. Treatment is best approached as a team effort to cope with both disorders. Relapse can occur, but doesn’t mean hope for change is lost.

Treatment for Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Substance Abuse

Located in Newport Beach, California, Sierra by the Sea provides premier residential treatment, offering rehab program and services for drug addiction, alcohol abuse, and mental health concerns. One of the most obvious similarities between NPD and substance use disorder is that in both disorders, individuals seek out external ways to fill a void of emptiness. The narcissistic relies on the admiration and attention of other people, real or imagined. Additionally, narcissists will create situations of accomplishments in order to obtain praise, make others envious of them, or act in attention-seeking behaviors. This is accomplished in a similar manner as the way an individual with substance use disorder will ensure their drug supply is constant and secure. If a loved one shows signs of NPD, it’s important to seek out a diagnosis from a mental health professional. It’s especially critical if the person also has a substance abuse problem. One of the hallmarks of personality disorders is that affected individuals don’t perceive reality the same way as most people, which is why all the best reasoning you have put forward hasn’t been effective.

Grandiose narcissism was a positive predictor of alcohol consumption and a positive (i.e., good) evaluation of alcohol-related problems. Vulnerable narcissism was a positive predictor of alcohol-related problems, problem recognition (i.e., readiness to change), and problem expectancies. Seeking professional help early on can help prevent relapse to drinking. Treating both conditions at the same time is also advised as a means of reducing relapse risk. A 2019 study of 345 college students (28% male, 72% female) found both grandiose and vulnerable forms of narcissism to be good predictors of alcohol use and alcohol-related problems. Personality plays a role, too, even in the absence of a clinical personality disorder.

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

When dealing with a narcissistic alcoholic, this sense of right can be elevated and can cause anger and even violence. It can be fun and relaxing to go out for drinks with your friends on Friday nights after a long work week or have a cocktail before bed. Many people drink alcohol and do so regularly, but how do you know when your drinking has become a problem? Self-centeredness often leads to acting manipulatively toward others. Instead of being honest and willing to accept what may or may not happen, alcoholics will use manipulation to get what they want, like money, alcohol, or something they need. All content narcissism and alcohol abuse created by Alcohol Rehab Help is sourced from current scientific research and fact-checked by an addiction counseling expert. However, the information provided by Alcohol Rehab Help is not a substitute for professional treatment advice. Alcohol Rehab Help Writing Staff Content Contributor Our mission at Alcohol Rehab Help is to educate people about the risks and dangers of excessive alcohol use. Our team of doctors, researchers, and writers produce educational content meant to guide people toward the path of recovery. It’s tricky to tell whether the root of the problem is narcissism or alcoholism.

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