Arrogance is Not the Test
A person who is always haughty, arrogant, and emotionally distant is unlikely to test positive for Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
The standard test for narcissism describes a person with an inflated opinion of themselves who is haughty, arrogant and lacks empathy . . . but you should know that these descriptions can be misleading!
Focusing on arrogance and a lack of empathy can lead people suffering from GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder), SPD (Schizoid Personality Disorder) or who are even on the autism spectrum, being misdiagnosed by their spouse or family.
A person with Narcissistic Personality Disorder will be two-faced and manipulative; rather than appearing arrogant, in public they will present as socially well adjusted and may even appear charming and polite.
People with narcissistic tendencies often lead a double life. In public, they present as charming, while in private they will be mean, critical, controlling and aggressive toward their family.
In this way the person with NPD will make their family members feel isolated, intimidated and frightened, while also making them feel to blame for the fights.
A Better Test
My husband Steve and I became experts with this disorder from living through Steve’s battle with NPD. Over the past 5 years we have helped thousands of couples and families. We have devised a quick test which includes 3 vital questions you must ask yourself to get straight to the heart of what narcissism in a marriage is about, in a practical and useful way. You will find these questions at our website The NC Marriage, which offers help for couples.
But first please read our Definition of the Narcissistic Personality.
An adjective used by psychologists to describe the behaviour of a self centred person who is haughty, arrogant and competitive and who can’t admit it when they are wrong. We must stress however that this behaviour is not consistent.