What is an Overt narcissist? What is a trait of Overt narcissism? How does an Overt narcissist act in a relationship? What Causes Overt Narcissism? How Do You Deal with an Overt Narcissist? If you are looking for answers to these questions, this article is for you.

My name is Sean Galla, and I have been an online support group facilitator for over 10 years. In my years of work, I have overseen numerous support groups, including facilitating narcissist support groups for male survivors of narcissistic abuse. Part of the work we do in our support group is to offer information to help members better understand narcissism, including the types to look out for.

In this article, I will cover everything you need to know about Overt narcissistic personality disorder.

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Sean Galla

An experienced facilitator, community builder and Peer Support Specialist, Sean has been running men's groups for 10+ years. Read Sean's Full Author Bio.

Who is an Overt Narcissist?

If a woman in your life has an over-inflated sense of importance, is always seeking attention, praise, and admiration from others, and completely disregards your feelings of the feelings of others, you may be dealing with an overt narcissist.

Overt narcissism or grandiose narcissism is one of the many spectrums that make up Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD). Other subtypes of NPD mental health condition include covert narcissism, communal narcissism, malignant narcissism, and antagonistic narcissism.

Over narcissists are the opposite of covert narcissists. Overt narcs are self-centered people with NPD who exhibit a cycle of grandiose behavior, a lack of empathy, and a need for admiration. These people usually have a very inflated sense of self-importance and firmly believe they are better and more superior than others.

They often chase after admiration and admiration from others and use manipulative tactics to have things their way. An overt narc is never shy of belittling and disregarding the feelings of others if it suits their agenda. This is because they see others around them as inferior.

An unhealthy sense of entitlement and lack of accountability also characterizes their behavior. Overt narcissists are the easiest to diagnose because they are extroverted and open. Learning and understanding this type of narcissism makes it easier for you to identify overt narcissists in your life, especially if you are a man in a relationship or married to a narcissistic woman.

Also, learning and understanding about overt narcissists makes it easier for you to protect yourself from their toxic cycles. Understanding how to deal with an overt narcissist can protect you from further harm, allow you to enforce boundaries, and protect your mental and emotional well-being.  

Signs that someone is an overt narcissist

Recognizing the signs of an overt narcissist or symptoms of overt narcissism is an essential step in understanding the behavior and managing how it impacts others. Here are some of the most common signs used to diagnose overt narcissism in individuals.

Excessive sense of self-importance and self-absorption

The most common sign of overt narcissism is their over-inflated sense of self-importance. These self-absorbed individuals firmly believe they are better than everyone else and expect the people around them to treat them as superior.

An overt narcissist will use different tactics to get the special treatment they need, including exaggerating their accomplishments, abilities, and talents.

A constant need for admiration and attention

Thanks to their extroverted nature, an overt narcissist craves admiration and attention and is willing to do just about anything to prop up their self-confidence. Women’s tactics can include dressing provocatively to draw attention to themselves, bragging about their achievements, and employing other attention-seeking behaviors to get the attention they need.


Lack of empathy

All narcs lack empathy. This is one of the most common telltale red flags of narcissists. Their over-inflated sense of self-worth and importance close their eyes to other people’s emotional needs of others. They are incapable of empathizing with people. Trying to open up to a narcissist emotionally may be met with resistance, your feelings getting dismissed and seen as irrelevant or unimportant.  

An exaggerated sense of superiority

Overt narcs view themselves as superior to others. This includes their family, loved ones, colleagues and friends. Part of the emotional abuse they inflict includes belittling and looking down on others to boost their ego.

They are exploitative

An overt narcissist is always willing to do anything to push their agenda or for personal gain. They will manipulate, use, abuse and take advantage of others standing in the way of them getting what they want. Gaslighting is a standard method used to exploit others.

Anger and defensiveness

Trying to challenge or criticize an overt narcissist’s behavior will be met with hostility, narcissistic rage, and defensiveness. They sometimes become aggressive, dismissive, and even abusive when challenged or antagonized. Name-calling and personal attacks are common retaliation tactics they will use to shut down anyone opposing them.

What are the most common traits of a narcissist woman? Find out here.

What causes overt narcissism

According to mental health professionals, there is no specific cause of overt narcissism or any other narcissistic disorder. Different factors, including personality development, genetics, and environmental factors, can influence the condition.


according to some scientific studies, narcissism can be influenced by some genetic factors. People with a family history of narcissism are more likely to develop these traits themselves.

Childhood trauma

Neglect and abuse are some of the childhood traumas that lead to the development of overt narcissistic traits in children. Most children who suffer childhood trauma develop these traits as coping mechanisms for their trauma and to have a sense of power and control in their lives.

Parenting style

How a child is raised has also been found to be a contributing factor to the development of narcissistic traits. Children constantly praised and rewarded without accountability for their mistakes are more likely to develop a sense of superiority and entitlement.

On the other hand, children who grow up neglected or heavily criticized develop low self-esteem. This can also contribute to the development of narcissistic tendencies as a way of compensating for feeling inadequate.

Personality factors

Personality traits like low agreeableness and high extraversion can also cause overt narcissism.

Societal normal and culture

Cultural values and societal norms are also contributing factors to NPD. This is especially common in cultures where achievement and success are valued, leading to developing a sense of superiority and importance.

Common examples of overt narcissistic behavior

  • An individual talking about their achievements non-stop, always seeking praise and admiration.
  • A boss belittling his subordinates and taking credit for their work, while constantly boasting about their achievements.
  • A partner always needs to be the center of attention in the relationship. They monopolize conversations and treat the relationship like a competition.
  • A friend needs to always be in charge and make all the decisions without consulting with others.
  • A public figure exaggerates their achievement or accomplishments while demeaning or belittling others whom they deem as inferior.
  • An individual disregards the needs and feelings of others and instead uses manipulation to get their way.


Dealing with an overt narcissist

Set boundaries – the need for boundaries when dealing with a narc cannot be overemphasized. Setting clear boundaries is a way of asserting your own needs to prevent a narc from overstepping.

Do not engage them – a narc will always try to get you worked up for them to look better. The only way to win is by not playing their game and avoiding taking their comments personally.

Limit access – whenever possible, limit how often a narc can access your life. Limiting your exposure to a narcissist leaves them with little to use against you. If the abuse is too much, consider going no contact with them.

Do not feed their ego – overt narcs thrive on validation and attention. You can cut off their narcissistic supply by avoiding excessively praising them, as doing so only reinforces their behavior.

Remain calm and confident – All narcs thrive in chaos. Therefore, they are always looking to start the next fire to provoke a reaction from the recipients of their abuse. Learning to remain calm and confident during your interactions is important.

Seeking support – Dealing with overt narcissism is exhausting and stressful, and it eventually takes a toll on your mental health. If cutting them out of your life is not an option, you should consider seeking support. You can seek support from friends, family members, and other loved ones. Joining a support group like MensGroup is also an ideal way to get support as a man with a narcissistic woman in your life.

More About MensGroup


As a man living with an overt narcissist, one of the most challenging parts of recovery is finding someone to talk to about your feelings, emotions, and trauma. Most people do not believe that men, too, can be victims of overt narcissistic abuse. Whether you have overt narcissistic parents, a narcissistic loved one, or children with narcissism, MensGroup is an all-men online platform where you can get the support you need.

Mensgroup believes anyone can heal, grow, and change with the proper support. You will be placed in a group with other men who have been through narcissistic abuse and understand your situation. This gives you a free space to share and learn from others who have previously walked in your shoes. With a support system of fellow men, you can overcome your trauma and lead a healthy, successful, and happy life.


When someone in your life lives with overt Narcissistic Personality Disorder, taking time to learn and understand NPD can go a long way in making it easier for you to determine how best to protect yourself and deal with the narc.

It is often said that a problem shared is a problem solved. Joining a narcissist support group is the first step you can take towards healing. Mensgroup.com offers you a platform where you can share your story to inspire others and get support to overcome the trauma of being a survivor of narcissistic behavior.