Do narcissism and autism overlap?

I made a comparison between my mother and a narcissistic mother which showed various similarities. Then I read the book you recommended and highlighted the areas that applied to my experience. By that, I mean, 70% of the book got highlighted.

Now I’m accepting and one day I will be recovering.

I think my mother is on the autism spectrum. And I know for a fact she suffered her own traumas. But I don’t think being on the spectrum completely erases your ability to feel empathy, no?

2 replies
  1. Penelope Trunk
    Penelope Trunk says:

    Being on the autism spectrum erases one’s ability to understand their own impact on other people.

    People with autism want to be kind but we don’t really understand when someone tells us we’re not being kind. We don’t change the behavior. We don’t process that information in a rational way. People with autism don’t have a sophisticated enough sense of self to perform at a high enough level to meet the definition of narcissism. So the end result might look the same but the intentions are very different.

    The problem is that we can’t find people to meet the definition of narcissism. We can only find people who meet the definition of autism. Just because a mother is cruel and ignores a child’s needs doesn’t make her intentional about it. Ask yourself if you think your mom had a grand plan to ignore your needs and then benefit in some larger way from doing that. A plan like that takes a lot of executive function.

    I hope this helps.


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