- There are two subtypes of narcissistic personality disorder: covert and overt narcissism.
- A covert narcissist has all the symptoms of narcissistic personality disorder, but hides most of the obvious signs through introversion.
- Signs of covert narcissism include shyness, introversion, insecurity, defensiveness, and a sensitivity to what others think.
- When dealing with this personality disorder it’s important to set clear boundaries and not take it personally.
Narcissism is sometimes thrown out in casual conversation to describe a person who’s being arrogant or too self-involved. But clinically, a person needs to meet specific criteria before being diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder (NPD). In general, VeryWell Mind describes people with NDP as being too preoccupied with their own self-importance to care about others, which often influences their decision-making and social interactions.
A covert narcissist is someone with the same symptoms as NDP, but they are much better at hiding it. Unfortunately, this also makes them harder to identify which is scary because they can be just as destructive. Here are the most common signs of a covert narcissist, as well as how to respond when dealing with one…
What is Covert Narcissism?
Covert narcissism is sometimes referred to as vulnerable or closet narcissism because they are so discreet with their behavior and intentions. It’s still a form of narcissistic personality disorder, including all the traits that come with it, but they are much less intense or not as openly displayed, says PsychCentral.
For example, covert narcissists still have grandiose traits and a lack of empathy for others, but are more subtle about it, making it harder to detect. These narcissists share all the formal symptoms of narcissistic personality disorder, but according to Healthline may also include:
- Shyness and introversion
- Sensitivity to what others think