Relationships With Narcissists Can Trigger PTSD: Study Finds

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Relationships With Narcissists Can Trigger PTSD

Mental Health News

A team of researchers at Harvard University explored how relationships with narcissists make people vulnerable to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The study is published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences.

The Study

The researchers surveyed 1294 participants, aged 21–83 years, in the US. They completed the Informant Five-Factor Narcissism Inventory, the Modified Self-Report Psychopathy Scale, and the PTSD Checklist for DSM-5 to assess narcissistic and psychopathic traits in romantic partners and their own PTSD symptoms.

The Findings

The results revealed a close link between narcissistic relationships and PTSD onset. Specifically, partner grandiose narcissism is the strongest predictor of PTSD for those who are in the relationship or those who have already left the relationship.

This is because narcissism and psychopathy are associated with a specific cluster of behaviors that are directed to cause interpersonal suffering and harm.

Individuals with narcissistic and psychopathic traits engage in manipulative, reactive, and proactive aggressive behaviors that trigger poor mental health conditions in their respective partners.

The authors remarked: “This is the first study to show that both narcissistic and psychopathic partner traits are significant and unique predictors of PTSD symptoms related to the relationship, and that these partner traits contribute uniquely to PTSD symptomology even when childhood abuse and manipulative tactics are accounted for.

To Know More You May Refer To

Arabi, S. (2023). Narcissistic and psychopathic traits in romantic partners predict post-traumatic stress disorder symptomology: Evidence for unique impact in a large sample. Personality and Individual Differences, 201, 111942.

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