I’m discussing one very predictable thing the covert narcissist always does. Let’s get started. Now, before I dive into the one very predictable thing that covert narcissists always do, I want to touch on the difference between “overt” or “grandiose” narcissism and “covert narcissism.” I want to touch on the difference between “overt” or “grandiose” narcissism and “covert” narcissism, as well as point out some of the telltale signs that will help you discern whether or not the person you’re dealing with is likely to be a covert narcissist.
Now, to begin with, covert narcissism is a subtype or subgroup of the destructive narcissist personality pattern. And let’s not forget that destructive narcissism, overt or covert, is on a spectrum, a continuum. These issues are never black or white. In other words, a destructive narcissistic personality pattern will manifest differently in different people. However, it is critical to recognize that the covert narcissist will present in a very different manner than their more overt or grandiose counterparts.
Unlike the grandiose narcissist, the covert narcissist will seem reserved, shy, and demure, even initially. In reality, they’re socially awkward, and they often use withholding behavior to emotionally manipulate and attempt to control others. And that includes their friendships and family relationships, by the way, not just romantic ones. They’ll appear to be very private people, often to the point of hiding and keeping secrets.
The kind of things that one would normally share within the context of close personal friendship or any real and genuine relationship in the spirit of simply being honest and forthright will be kept from you for no apparent reason. They hold their cards unnecessarily close to their chests, which, in my opinion, is a manifestation of how insecure and shame-based they actually are. But there’s more to it than that.
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