I have had difficulty with this couple who happen to be my husband's parents. Someone suggested to me that they might have a personality disorder particularly NPD but I am not so sure. I don't know much about this and from what I have read they have some of those traits but not all. They do seem to have empathy for their family at least. Their adult sons do not seem to feel like they were slighted as children. They are not implulsive and in fact are very "careful" about what they do and say. Their relationship with each other is stable and they generally don't have tempers. The woman actually told me that she never gets mad. They come across as superficial and phony. The woman in particular compliments excessively and likes to dote and wait on people to the point of being irritating. They even want to bring all the food when invited for dinner even after we have refused several times. They simply don't listen, as if anything you say contrary to what they want to do has no significance for them. When I complained or confronted them about this behavior, they simply let it go in one ear and out the other or they said these are nice things to do and if you don't like it it's your problem. They can't be wrong and when I tell them I am hurt, the response is I never meant to hurt you but they keep on doing the same things. They are very concerned about appearances. The woman is extremely vain and concerned about her physical appearance and not just hers but everyone elses. She comments out loud both good and bad. They are very weight conscious and though they love and are very proud of their successful sons they are dissappointed that one of their sons and two of their grandchildren are slightly overweight and they aren't afraid to say things to them about their weight. I once heard her tell a dying woman who had previously been overweight, how nice and trim she was looking. They like nice things, nice clothes etc and keep all their possessions in perfect condition. Their house is beautiful and perfect. Her favorite expression when talking about their life, their family etc. is "wonderful and perfect" However she has struggled with depression and takes medication for it. Could this be covert narcissism?
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