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How does a narcissistic son behave?

A narcissistic son can exhibit a variety of behaviors that stem from their sense of entitlement, need for admiration, and lack of empathy. Understanding the tendencies of a narcissistic son can help parents and family members cope with the challenges these behaviors may cause.

What are the signs of a narcissistic son?

There are several potential signs that may indicate a son has narcissistic tendencies:

  • An exaggerated sense of self-importance
  • An extreme need for attention and admiration
  • A sense of entitlement and expectation of special treatment
  • Preoccupation with fantasies of success, power, beauty, etc.
  • A belief that they are superior and can only be understood by other special people
  • A tendency to exploit or take advantage of others
  • A lack of empathy for others’ needs and feelings
  • Envy of others or belief that others are envious of them
  • Arrogant behaviors and attitudes

A narcissistic son may exhibit a few or many of these tendencies to varying degrees. The more signs they show, the more likely it is that the son has narcissistic personality traits or full-blown disorder.

How does a narcissistic son interact with parents?

There are several ways a narcissistic son may behave towards parents:

  • Expects special treatment and exceptional accommodation from parents
  • Disrespects boundaries set by parents
  • Takes advantage of parental care and resources
  • Expects praise and compliments from parents
  • Reacts strongly to criticism from parents
  • Tries to control parents’ behavior
  • Lies, deceives, or manipulates parents
  • Verbally abuses parents or engages in emotional blackmail
  • Does not show empathy for parents’ feelings or needs
  • Takes credit for parents’ successes as their own

The narcissistic son tends to see their parents as extensions of themselves. As a result, the relationship is often imbalanced, with the son making unreasonable demands and showing little care for his parents’ well-being. Parents may feel constantly manipulated, criticized, or underappreciated.

How does a narcissistic son interact with siblings?

A narcissistic sibling often engages in the following behaviors:

  • Belittling or bullying of siblings
  • Need for constant competition with siblings
  • Taking credit for accomplishments of siblings
  • Blaming failures or mistakes on siblings
  • Expecting siblings to go along with their needs and demands
  • Disregard for siblings’ thoughts, emotions, and boundaries
  • Envy and resentment towards successful or favored siblings
  • Deflecting blame for relationship issues to the sibling
  • Spreading lies or rumors about siblings

The narcissistic sibling strives to be the star of the family. They may manipulate situations to make themselves look superior. Healthy sibling bonding and empathy is often missing.

How does a narcissistic son behave in romantic relationships?

Some problematic behaviors a narcissistic son may exhibit in romantic relationships include:

  • Love-bombing partners during courtship with affection and compliments
  • Expecting partners to cater fully to their needs and desires
  • Controlling behaviors towards partners
  • Devaluing partners after the honeymoon phase ends
  • Blaming relationship problems entirely on the partner
  • Excessive flirting or cheating on partners
  • Minimizing partners’ emotions and responses
  • Using gaslighting or manipulation tactics on partners
  • Verbally, emotionally, or even physically abusing partners
  • Exploiting partners’ insecurities and vulnerabilities

The narcissist tends to view romance in terms of their own needs and may become dismissive or abusive when partners fail to worship them unconditionally. Relationships with a narcissist are often turbulent.

How does a narcissistic son behave among peers?

Some typical behaviors a narcissistic son may display around peers include:

  • Bragging about accomplishments or ventures
  • One-upping peers’ stories and achievements
  • Monopolizing conversations to talk about themselves
  • Taking credit for group work and team successes
  • Strongly reacting to peer criticism or failure
  • Putting peers down to assert superiority
  • Spreading rumors or lies about peers they envy
  • Forming cliques of “special” people but easily dropping those who stop feeding their ego
  • Using peers as audiences for their “greatness”

The narcissistic son craves being the center of attention and affirmation from peers but is unlikely to return genuine support or caring. Their relationships are often driven by ulterior motives.

How does a narcissistic son behave in school or work settings?

A narcissistic son is likely to display certain behaviors in academic or professional settings such as:

  • Arrogance towards teachers or supervisors
  • A sense of entitlement to easy success and praise
  • Blaming failures or poor performance on external factors
  • Overestimating their talents and skills
  • Resenting constructive criticism or advice
  • Taking credit for others’ work and achievements
  • Bragging about academic or job performance
  • Envy of classmates’ or colleagues’ successes
  • Bullying behaviors towards competitors
  • Disinterest in learning or self-improvement

The narcissistic son’s quest for glory and validation often hinders their ability to realistically assess their abilities or put in genuine effort. They may achieve success but have difficulty maintaining it.

What are the effects of growing up with a narcissistic son?

Being raised alongside a narcissistic sibling can have the following harmful effects:

  • Low self-esteem or lack of confidence
  • People-pleasing tendencies
  • Difficulty trusting others
  • Victim mentality
  • Heightened sensitivity to criticism
  • Second-guessing accomplishments or talents
  • Resentment and bitterness
  • Withdrawal from family or reluctance to communicate
  • Enabling or apologizing for brother’s narcissism
  • Questioning reality due to brother’s manipulation

Having a narcissistic brother often leaves siblings feeling invisible, devalued, or overshadowed. Their self-concept may suffer due to constant criticism and competition. The dynamic can leave deep scars well into adulthood unless addressed.

What are some coping strategies for dealing with a narcissistic son?

Coping with a narcissistic son can be challenging, but some strategies that may help include:

  • Setting clear boundaries and limits with consistent enforcement
  • Avoiding excessive flattery or catering to unreasonable demands
  • Responding calmly to temper tantrums or verbal abuse
  • Refusing to accept unfair accusations or abuse
  • Spending time away from the son regularly for self-care
  • Joining a support group to lessen isolation
  • Seeking therapy for objective insight and strengthening self-esteem
  • Keeping communication factual and emotionless
  • Emphasizing rewards over punishments
  • Modeling empathy and appropriate behavior

While the narcissistic son is unlikely to change, family members can modify their own responses to minimize the distress caused. Professional help may be needed to undo the damage to relationships and mental health.

What are some ways to help a narcissistic son?

While it’s difficult to alter a narcissistic son’s personality, some helpful strategies include:

  • Getting them into therapy to address underlying insecurities
  • Avoiding shaming or hostile criticism when addressing unhealthy behaviors
  • Using rewards to reinforce small acts of empathy and consideration
  • Exposing them to role models who display positive traits and values
  • Enrolling them in activities or groups that foster cooperation and community
  • Refraining from aggressive or permissive parenting styles
  • Teaching self-soothing strategies to manage emotional reactions
  • Encouraging pursuits and talents unrelated to glory or status
  • Expressing unconditional love paired with high expectations
  • Holding them accountable for poor behavior while maintaining composure

With commitment and care from parents, some youths may overcome their narcissistic proclivities. But progress requires recognizing the unhealthy behaviors and a willingness to change.


In summary, narcissistic sons tend to show behaviors like entitlement, exploitation of others, lack of empathy, arrogance, attention-seeking, and an inability to tolerate criticism. Their relationships with parents, siblings, peers, and romantic partners suffer due to their constant need for validation and disregard for others’ needs. Setting boundaries, emphasizing compassionate modeling, and seeking professional help can aid families struggling with a narcissistic son. With insight into these tendencies, parents can identify unhealthy behaviors early and take steps to improve the son’s interpersonal functioning, benefitting both him and those around him.