In Greek mythology, Narcissus is known for his beauty. Narcissus, because of his looks, is forbidden by the gods to see his reflection. He is unaware of his looks until one day he happens to catch his reflection in the water of a spring. He falls in love with his reflection and becomes fixated with it. Narcissus, paralyzed in awe over his own reflection, eventually withers away. Today, psychiatrists would diagnose Narcissus with a case of Narcissistic Personality Disorder. This mental disorder is one that can be identified by symptoms, can be treated, and is one that has a variety of possible causes.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) is a mental disorder that is often mistaken for arrogance. According to the Mayo Clinic, NPD is when a person feels that they are superior over everyone else and have a constant craving for attention. Those that suffer from this disorder often lack the capability to feel empathy and do not connect well with others (Mayo Clinic 1). NPD is identified with dramatic and irrational behavior and does have symptoms that coincide with the disorder. Victims of the disorder often display severe jealousy, arrogance, and also lack the ability to empathize with others. (Mayo Clinic 1). Sufferers also have a tendency to exaggerate their successes, expect constant admiration, take advantage of others, and often have a very difficult time creating and maintaining relationships (Mayo Clinic 1).
The average person posses many of these qualities just because of human nature. In fact, according to the reference entry Narcissism, this behavior of feeling of wanting to be the best is considered a normal stage in child development. Envy, greed, and the tendency to lie are all normal attributes of normal behavior. What really makes NPD stand apart from human nature is the fact that all of these qualities are to an extreme degree. There is a difference between having a good self-esteem and being narcissistic. Those with a higher self-esteem do not usually value themselves more than others, whereas someone suffering from NPD put a higher self value on themselves (Mayo Clinic 2). When this feeling of self righteousness starts to affect and destroy personal relationships, this is when psychiatrists are analyzing other symptoms to see if one is suffering from NPD (Narcissism 1).
When it comes to officially diagnosing NPD, there is no laboratory test that can be done to confirm any hunches that a physician may have (Mayo Clinic). Diagnosing someone with this disorder is done through an observation of behavior as well as the use of questionnaires as a form of a psychological evaluation (Mayo Clinic). Once someone is diagnosed with NPD, there are different types of therapy to help one cope with this disorder. There are no medications that will aid in the lessening of the feelings that come along with NPD (Mayo Clinic). The only forms of help that one can one suffering from NDP are different forms of therapy. A few types of therapy...