There’s a longstanding belief in the HSP community that Narcissists target highly sensitive persons (HSPs). This belief has made HSPs see narcissists as their number one enemy, to a point of wanting to reclaim their power from them.
In fact, this belief is so widespread and supported by research that there are books teaching HSPs how to deal with Narcissists.
And the most popular of these books is “The Highly Sensitive Person’s Guide to Dealing With Toxic People: How to Reclaim Your Power from Narcissists and other Manipulators”We even featured this book here on HSP Tools as one of the 10 books highly sensitive men should read. It’s a good read for every HSP, regardless of gender, so go check it out.
But what if you, as a highly sensitive person, didn’t have to fear narcissists so much? And what if we, highly sensitive persons (HSPs), aren’t that different from the narcissists we claim to be our number one enemies?
Would this change the HSP vs Narcissists conversation?
Enter the New Research Study
A New Study Says There’s a Link between HSPs and Narcissists
A recent study seeking to determine if highly sensitive persons (HSPs) display hypersensitive narcissism says there’s a link between HSPs and Narcissists.
According to the study:
Sensory processing sensitivity and hypersensitive narcissism are substantially related constructs.
What does this mean?
Narcissism is divided into two parts – Grandiose Narcissism and Vulnerable Narcissism. The former type of narcissism (grandiose) is what HSPs try to stay away from. It’s characterized by excessive self-confidence, boldness, and self-aggrandizement.
On the other hand, Vulnerable Narcissism or Hypersensitive Narcissism is characterized by introversion, defensiveness, anxiety, and vulnerability to life’s traumas.
It’s also related to low self-esteem and other psychopathological symptoms, including suicidal ideation and behaviour. And all of these are high in HSPs who grow up in an environment that doesn’t support the trait of high sensitivity.
So it’s not surprising that vulnerable narcissism is the type of narcissism being linked to highly sensitive persons (HSPs).
And that the research study shows a high correlation between high sensitivity and vulnerable narcissism.
In the End + What are Your Thoughts?
As the trait of high sensitivity continues to gain traction and popularity, more research studies are bound to occur. But no study is ever so conclusive that it should remove credibility from the personality trait you already identify with.
The purpose of this study was to show that highly sensitive persons (HSPs) display hypersensitive narcissism (or vulnerable narcissism). And in the end, it concluded that to be true.
But vulnerable narcissism is only one face of narcissism, and showing similarities with the trait of high sensitivity doesn’t mean that HSPs are narcissists. It only means that the two personalities share some characteristics.
Just as other personality traits do.
Over to You
What are your thoughts on this new research study?
Let us know in the comments.
- High Sensitivity Wrongly Identified with Narcissism – by Dr. Elaine N. Aron