Narcissists gratify themselves despite the costs to those around them. Alcoholics not in recovery continue drinking even when it hurts loved ones.
While alcoholism is an addiction and extreme narcissism is a personality disorder, narcissists and alcoholics tend to share 11 similarities. Knowing these can help you cope with people in your life who have narcissism or alcoholism.
Narcissism is characterized by iron-clad denial. From a narcissist’s point of view, he or she has no problems and can do no wrong. Bragging and a damn-the-consequences-swagger are essential parts of many narcissists’ personae.
Similarly, denial keeps addiction in place. Denial manifests for alcoholics in many ways, such as saying they can stop drinking anytime they want, lying about when they drank, or refusing to acknowledge that their drinking has costs.
That’s why participants in 12-step programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous introduce themselves with their name and say “I’m an alcoholic.” It’s a step in breaking denial.
Narcissists don’t enter a room saying “Hi, I’m Jack, I’m a narcissist.” However, their dramatic, manipulative or entitled behaviors often announce their narcissism beyond a doubt.
2) Lack of introspection
Few narcissists are interested in self-reflection. Doing so would risk encountering the deep shame and emptiness they carry.
Similarly, addiction can cover inner conflicts and uncomfortable feelings. As long as an addict uses, those feelings go unaddressed. The longer the feelings are unaddressed, the more daunting it can become to look inward and face them.