Why Covert Narcissists Are The Worst

Covert narcissists, in my opinion, are the absolute worst. I’ve had to deal with two of them. Malignant narcissists are heinous and horrifying. Overt or grandiose narcissists are terrible too but I think covert narcissists are especially awful because you don’t see them coming. They are so good at hiding their behavior so that only their target, their victim, really sees who and what they truly are. They knowingly do things in order to obtain a sense of plausible deniability. In other words, it’s really easy for them to deny certain things and have it seem plausible. Because of this, it can become incredibly difficult to prove them wrong. You will find a covert narcissist doing little tiny things that make life just absolutely horrible for the people in their lives.

Prior to understanding narcissism, I believed that narcissists were people that were boastful, arrogant, and outright telling people how great they are all the time. I suppose I knew that narcissists lack a degree of empathy; but to me, the grandiose narcissist was the archetype that I had in my head. I didn’t have the picture of a covert narcissist in my head and I had never even heard of the term before. It wasn’t until I read “The Covert Passive Aggressive Narcissist” by Debbie Mirza, that I really started to understand this personality type and recognize it in the people who had made my life a living hell. One of the worst attributes of the covert narcissist how passive aggressive they are. Although they can also be very offensive, the rest of the world will think otherwise. They often play the victim and even show up as significant figures in religion or politics. In Craig Malkin’s “Rethinking Narcissism,” he talks about the three E’s that “introverted” or covert narcissists possess– which pretty much summarizes why I think they are the absolute worst!

Why Covert Narcissists Are The Worst

Exploitation

The first thing you might see in a covert narcissist is their ability to exploit situations and people with ease.  Although a lot of narcissists do this, coverts will do this in such a subtle way that will ultimately cause their victims agony.

Entitlement

The second “E” that Craig Malkin describes is entitlement. Although all narcissists feel entitled, covert narcissists are entitled to things that seem less obvious yet cause more damage to the people they target. They feel entitled to things that don’t even have anything to do with them. They want to take credit for things that they didn’t do. They want to have praise for things that they didn’t even accomplish. They feel entitled to center stage even if they didn’t have anything to do with the play. 

Empathy Impairment

The third thing that he talks about is empathy impairment, which again, you see with all narcissists. Covert narcissists seem to lack empathy; however, know what they need to say and do when it behooves their ego. When somebody is ill or injured or is grieving, the covert narcissist might be the first person to actually show up. They might be at the bedside of the ill or injured person or the first person to send a gift to the family grieving because they recognize the situation might be an opportunity for them to look good in front of others. They will only do this if they think there’s going to be a significant audience with the right people in the audience to see it. They don’t do this because they actually care. This is one of the worst things about covert narcissists because they are able to use their lack of empathy as a manipulative tool. They are the most strategic of them all. 

How To Negotiate With A Narcissist

More From Rebecca's Blog
7 Signs that You are Dating a Narcissist

7 Signs that You are Dating a Narcissist

You know enough about narcissism to know that you don’t want to fall for one. But you also know that a narcissistic personality disorder can be difficult to detect during initial encounters. Further complicating matters, if you are an empath, your compassion will make...

read more
Understanding Covert Narcissism

Understanding Covert Narcissism

Interest in narcissism has skyrocketed in recent years. Brené Brown and other mental health professionals have argued that the incidence of narcissism is rising due to the pressures associated with social media and the media culture. Increasingly, mental health...

read more
Why is gaslighting such an effective manipulation tool?

Why is gaslighting such an effective manipulation tool?

Most often seen in intimate relationships, gaslighting is one of the methods narcissists use to gain the upper hand. This psychological manipulation can lead partners to question their own judgment and believe ideas that are patently untrue. Keep reading to find out...

read more
Previous
Next