Most of us have encountered narcissists at some point, and many of us associate it with a male phenomenon. However, females can be narcissists too. Studies show that approximately six percent of people are narcissists, although that number is somewhat higher among men. Frequently, the behavior pattern differs between the genders, although there are certain similarities.
Male and Female Narcissists
Both genders place great emphasis on looks. They believe themselves to be attractive and will be groomed for all occasions. Women tend to be more preoccupied with their appearance and the need for positive feedback. They frequently use looks as a manipulative tool by the way they dress and act.
Since narcissists are extremely confident in their looks, they become experts at seducing the opposite gender. They assume they are irresistible. Male narcissists emphasize their charm to attract someone, while women use their bodies to get attention. For women, this usually involves dressing provocatively enough to barely meet local legal codes.
Are Narcissists Confident?
Both male and female narcissists appear overly confident. A part of them truly believes they are special and deserving of special treatment. However, the need for admiration and attention is mostly a cover for feelings of insecurity. Men gain a measure of confidence by adopting the appearance s of assured behavior. Women may feel the need to flaunt their superiority (looks, etc.) over other women. Narcissistic women can feel superior when they are around women with lesser standards. They frequently treat such women with covert contempt or will gossip negatively about them women. Diminishing other women will boost their own sense of worth. Men are after control while women seek admiration.
Money has always been a source of power, and both male and female narcissists want that power. Men may be obsessed with their earning power, while women revel in their spending power. Both are unapologetically in love with a grandiose display of wealth.
Both male and female narcissists have a huge sense of entitlement. If they do not get the admiration and attention they feel is due them from one partner, they won’t hesitate to seek out someone who will fulfill their needs. Both genders are capable of infidelity. Men can turn infidelity into a lifestyle with one affair after the other while women usually want one man to pamper and adore them.
What About Children?
Narcissists may or may not enjoy the role of parent. If there is more than one child, there is frequently a special favorite child that receives most of the parental attention, while the others may be neglected. Men can resent the attention that children draw away from them. Women see their children as a part of them and bask in the reflected glory of great parenting. They make the children’s accomplishments about them rather than about the children.
Narcissists love competition if they come out ahead. They love a display of their superiority. Men tend to view other men as rivals. That includes business and sibling-type relationships. Females will try to dominate other women in looks and accomplishments.
Differences Between Male and Female Narcissists
In a relationship, men will attempt to keep women in their place to ensure they remain. They believe that men should be in charge of a relationship and make the important decisions. Even in the twenty-first century, some women agree with that. Male aggressiveness is still seen as more socially acceptable than female aggressiveness. A male boss will be seen as “in charge” while a woman exhibiting the same behavior will be regarded as unpleasant and bossy.
Women, on the other hand, will go find someone else if they are unhappy with the man in their life instead of keeping him around. They preserve their dominance over men with a strong display of sexuality rather than aggressiveness.
Narcissism Can Be A Matter Of Degrees
Narcissists share the traits of being self-absorbed and manipulative. They also have an unrealistic grand view of themselves. The average person can and usually does exhibit these traits at any point in time. That doesn’t make them narcissists.
Real narcissists exhibit these symptoms as the norm, as well as others, such as lying, exaggerating the truth, and the need for endless entitlement and validation. A genuine narcissist will likely have difficulty in establishing and maintaining relationships, including relationships with immediate family.
When dealing with male or female narcissists, it is important to maintain good boundaries, as both genders will be ready to tear them down unless you are watchful. As for establishing a relationship with a narcissist, they are capable of love. But their first and last love will always be themselves.
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