Occurrence[ edit ] It is common for people to transfer feelings from their parents to their partners or children that is, cross-generational entanglements. For instance, one could mistrust somebody who resembles an ex-spouse in manners, voice, or external appearance, or be overly compliant to someone who resembles a childhood friend. In The Psychology of the Transference, Carl Jung states that within the transference dyad both participants typically experience a variety of opposites, that in love and in psychological growth, the key to success is the ability to endure the tension of the opposites without abandoning the process, and that this tension allows one to grow and to transform.
The cardinal feature of the narcissistic personality is the grandiose sense of self importance, but paradoxically underneath this grandiosity the narcissist suffers from a chronically fragile low self esteem.
The grandiosity of the narcissist, however, is often so pervasive that we tend to dehumanize him or her. The narcissist conjures in us images of the mythological character Narcissus who could only love himself, rebuffing anyone who attempted to touch him.
Nevertheless, it is the underlying sense of inferiority which is the real problem of the narcissist, the grandiosity is just a facade used to cover the deep feelings of inadequacy. Since the narcissist is incapable of asserting his or her own sense of adequacy, the narcissist seeks to be admired by others.
Therefore, meaningful emotional interactions with others are avoided. By simultaneously seeking the admiration of others and keeping them at a distance the narcissist is usually able to maintain the illusion of grandiosity no matter how people respond. Thus, when people praise the narcissist his or her grandiosity will increase, but when criticized the grandiosity will usually remain unaffected because the narcissist will devalue the criticizing person.
In particular, four of these narcissistic character traits best illustrate the pattern discussed above. The Therapeutic Essence of Treating Narcissism The narcissist who enters therapy does not think that there is something wrong with him or her.
Typically, the narcissist seeks therapy because he or she is unable to maintain the grandiosity which protects him or her from the feelings of despair. It is therefore essential for the therapist to be alert to the narcissists attempts to steer therapy towards healing the injured grandiose part, rather than exploring the underlying feelings of inferiority and despair.
Differential Psychological Views of Narcissism The use of the term narcissism in relation to psychological phenomena was first made by Ellis in Ellis described a special state of auto-erotism as Narcissus like, in which the sexual feelings become absorbed in self admiration Goldberg, Henceforth, several psychological theories have attempted to explain and treat the narcissistic phenomenon.
Specifically, the most comprehensive psychological theories have been advanced by the psychodynamic perspective and to a lesser extent the Jungian analytical perspective. Essentially, both theories cite developmental problems in childhood as leading to the development of the narcissistic disorder.
The existential school has also attempted to deal with the narcissistic problem, although the available literature is much smaller.
Existentialists postulate that society as a whole can be the crucial factor in the development of narcissism. The final perspective to be discussed is the humanistic approach which although lacking a specific theory on narcissism, can nevertheless be applied to the narcissistic disorder.
In many ways the humanistic approach to narcissism echoes the sentiments of the psychodynamic approach. The Psychodynamic Perspective of Narcissism The psychodynamic model of narcissism is dominated by two overlapping schools of thought, the self psychology school and the object relations school.
We are all born as narcissists and gradually our infantile narcissism matures into a healthy adult narcissism. A narcissistic disorder results when this process is somehow disrupted. By contrast the object relations school, represented by Kernberg, argues that narcissism does not result from the arrest of the normal maturation of infantile narcissism, rather a narcissism represents a fixation in one of the developmental periods of childhood.
Specifically, the narcissist is fixated at a developmental stage in which the differentiation between the self and others is blurred. This transformation takes place through the process which Kohut terms transmuting internalizations.
As the infant is transformed into an adult he or she will invariably encounter various challenges resulting in some frustration. If this frustration exceeds the coping abilities of the person only slightly the person experiences optimal frustration. Optimal frustration leads the person to develop a strong internal structure i.
In the narcissist the process of transmuting internalizations is arrested because the person experiences a level of frustration which exceeds optimal frustration.
The narcissist thus remains stuck at the infantile level, displaying many of the characteristics of the omnipotent and invulnerable child Kohut, Kernberg argues that the narcissist is unable to successfully master the rapprochement subphase and is thus fixated at this level.
The practicing subphase age 10 to 14 months marks the developmental stage at which the child learns to walk.
The ability to walk gives the child a whole new perspective of the world around him. However, reality soon catches up with the child as the child enters the rapprochement subphase age 14 to 24 months.
At this stage the child discovers that he or she is not omnipotent, that there are limits to what he or she can do. According to Kernberg if the child is severely frustrated at this stage he or she can adapt by re-fusing or returning to the practicing subphase, which affords him the security of grandiosity and omnipotence Kernberg, Personality psychology is a branch of psychology that studies personality and its variation among individuals.
It is a scientific study which aims to show how people are individually different due to psychological forces. . Prime Book Box for Kids Story time just got better with Prime Book Box, a subscription that delivers hand-picked children’s books every 1, 2, or 3 months.
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Psychodynamic Theorist PSYCH/ Psychodynamic Theorist Theories that explain the origin of personality are referred to as psychodynamic theories.
Psychodynamic theories are informed by the concepts of transference, resistance, conscious, and unconscious mental life.
This volume is the capstone of a trilogy, beginning with a treatment manual for transference-focused psychotherapy for borderline personality disorder, then going on to therapy for less serious personality disorders, and finally to this comprehensive overview. An understanding of specific modifications of technique that tailor intervention to the individual patient’s personality pathology Descriptions of specific psychodynamic techniques that can be exported to shorter-term treatments and acute clinical settings. Psychoanalytic Theory & Approaches In , Heinz Kohut’s book, Whatever theoretical perspective a psychoanalyst employs, the fundamentals of psychoanalysis are always present—an understanding of transference, an interest in the unconscious, and the centrality of the psychoanalyst-patient relationship in the healing process.
Psychodynamic theories of personality are heavily influenced by the work of Sigmund Freud and emphasize the influence of the unconscious mind and childhood experiences on personality. Psychodynamic theories include Sigmund Freud's psychosexual stage theory and Erik Erikson's stages of psychosocial development.
Narcissism: Psychological Disorder, Theories, Treatment Understanding the Narcissistic Phenomenon The so called ‘narcissistic personality disorder’ is a complex and often misunderstood disorder. according to discussion in the book, the fact that there are ____ theories of personality makes it _____ likely that the researchers will face findings and theoretical arguments that challenge their favored view.