Is It Narcissism or Alcoholism?

Narcissists spend most of their lives pretending to be someone else. Because they know that if they unleash it all, no one would go near them. Among these varied interests, the appreciation of alcohol, when approached mindfully, can be a legitimate and fulfilling art and hobby.

On the other hand, their mask could start to slip, giving you a glimpse of the vulnerable inner self hiding behind the narcissist’s disguise. If you frequent a lot of bars, you’ve probably noticed that alcohol brings out the narcissist in everyone and tends to amplify a true narcissist’s most unpleasant characteristics. Heavy alcohol use often goes hand-in-hand with a range of psychological issues.

What to Do If Someone You Know Has Both Alcoholic & Narcissistic Traits

He creates this site to offer guidance and support to individuals seeking to overcome addiction and achieve lasting sobriety. With extensive experience in the field of addiction treatment, Francisco is dedicated to helping individuals access the resources they need for successful recovery. While some studies have suggested a link between alcoholism and narcissism, the two conditions are distinct and not everyone who has one also has the other.

  • They fail to keep promises, fulfill obligations, or pay attention to what other people need.
  • “The better you get at setting boundaries and knowing your truth and not engaging with them, the more frustrated they get.”
  • If they’ve just started dating a new partner and are still in the love-bombing phase, they’re likely to become even more vociferous about their love and admiration for that idealized person.
  • Treating each condition independently can sometimes lead people to “choose one over the other,” especially if care is not coordinated.

For others, it may mean drinking a few drinks every night for extended periods. Other signs of alcohol use disorder are related to drinking frequency, habits, and its impact on relationships, which we’ll explore below. Many treatment programs utilize a 12-Step approach, and many of those recovering choose to attend meetings after they complete their treatment. Attending meetings can help individuals maintain their recovery… Sometimes, in active addiction, we do things we aren’t proud of.

Rebuilding Bonds: Healing and Strengthening Family Relationships in Addiction Recovery

These include fluctuating or low self-esteem, the devaluing of others, and a sense of invulnerability. This article looks at the links between narcissism and addiction and explains why people with narcissism may be more likely than other people to engage in addictive behaviors. The rate of drug and alcohol addiction and narcissism is significant. According to a 2009 article in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, the rates of drug addiction and alcoholism with NPD are 21.7% and 9.3% respectively, which is over 3% of the general population.

  • A doctor can offer help and treatment to those dealing with addiction, which may involve suggesting lifestyle changes or rehabilitation clinics.
  • Self-care is crucial for maintaining your resilience and emotional strength.
  • Narcissists are well known for their inability to cope with boredom.
  • People with narcissistic personality disorders share similar traits with addicts, and both types of narcissistic personality disorder may lead to addiction.
  • People with vulnerable narcissism tend to show avoidant, defensive, or hypersensitive behaviors, and they often experience feelings of rage at a perceived lack of esteem or respect.

There’s little data on whether people with both NPD and AUD have a different outlook than people who have only one of the conditions. However, it’s recommended that both conditions are treated at the same time to improve your likelihood of recovery. You might also engage in lifestyle changes and self-care strategies in order to make progress.


Vulnerable narcissists are highly sensitive to criticism and may turn to alcohol to numb the emotional pain and create a temporary buffer against negative feelings. If the person does not want to enter treatment or change, there may not be hope for healing. The best thing to do at that point is to seek out individual therapy for yourself and work on setting firmer boundaries.

The Double Grief of Having Had a Narcissistic Parent – Psychology Today

The Double Grief of Having Had a Narcissistic Parent.

Posted: Thu, 09 Feb 2023 08:00:00 GMT [source]

It found that individuals with grandiose narcissism have more friends and followers, post more often, and spend more time on social media than other people. People with vulnerable narcissism tend to show avoidant, defensive, or hypersensitive behaviors, and they often experience feelings of rage at a perceived lack of esteem or respect. People with grandiose narcissism tend to have very high self-esteem, behave in a dominant are alcoholics narcissists way, and overestimate their own capabilities. While this may seem confusing as narcissists seem to be in full control, the risk of addiction is based on the underlying factors of narcissism. What appears to be arrogance, superiority, self-control and focus on self is really a sign of deep, underlying insecurity. Narcissists are very emotionally fragile and can have extreme reactions to any type of negative criticism.