How a person becomes a narcissist

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How a person becomes a narcissist

There are actually two pathways to narcissism. The first path that one might think about is kind of classic, the spoiled child. The spoiled child gets what they want when they want it. They never have to wait their turn, so they naturally become narcissistic and have this sense of entitlement going out into the world. The second type is the type that's a little bit more curious, I think, and it's the type that will show up in a setting like mine, the treatment office. And that's the one when you get a lot of the bluster, the showing off, the arrogance, the pompousness. They act entitled. In fact, both act the same. You wouldn't be able to differentiate them from their origins because the behaviors look the same. But the origins of the second one is actually someone who's been more deprived. They weren't necessarily spoiled. Their love was conditional. How they did, how they performed in the world is how they got their goodies, if you will. So deep down, underneath all of that boastful bragging side, you have a very vulnerable, lonely, oftentimes broken person at the core.

See Wendy T. Behary, LCSW's video on How a person becomes a narcissist...


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Wendy T. Behary, LCSW

Psychotherapist & Author

With 25 years post-graduate training and advanced level certifications, Wendy Behary is the founder and director of The Cognitive Therapy Center of New Jersey and The New Jersey Institute for Schema Therapy. She has been treating clients, training professionals and supervising psychotherapists for more than 20 years. Wendy is also on the faculty of the Cognitive Therapy Center and Schema Therapy Institute of New York, where she has trained and worked with Dr. Jeffrey Young since 1989. She is a founding fellow of The Academy of Cognitive Therapy (Dr. Aaron T. Beck). Wendy is also the President of the Executive Board of the International Society of Schema Therapy (ISST).

Wendy Behary has co-authored several chapters and articles on schema therapy and cognitive therapy. She is the author of the New Harbinger Publication (1st and upcoming 2nd edition) Disarming the Narcissist: Surviving and Thriving with the Self-Absorbed. Wendy has a specialty in treating narcissists and the people who live with and deal with them. As an author and an expert on the subject of narcissism, she is a contributing chapter author of several chapters on schema therapy for narcissism. She lectures both nationally and internationally to professional and general audiences on schema therapy, and the subject of narcissism, relationships, and dealing with difficult people. Her work with industry has included speaking engagements focused on interpersonal conflict resolution. Her private practice is primarily devoted to treating narcissists, partners/people dealing with them, and couples experiencing relationship problems. She is also an expert in coaching individuals in interviewing, public speaking, and interpersonal skills enhancement.

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