15 Sep Narcissistic Loss for Baby Boomers
Narcissism is a complex personality trait usually seen as a dysfunctional aspect of a person’s psyche. Baby boomers suffer with the symptoms of narcissism like anyone else.
Narcissistic need is something that must be fulfilled if the sufferer is to gain any satisfaction. When that need is not fulfilled, the result is a void which the narcissist fills with even more unacceptable behavior, otherwise recognized as a crisis.
Narcissists are supposedly obsessed with love of themselves and with getting their own way in all things but in reality, most narcissists have so little love and respect for themselves that they invent an alter ego, someone they can look up to and show the World as a better representation of themselves; a reflected image.
A narcissistic baby boomer has demonstrably two problems: he is incompatible with his own image and because he is a baby boomer, he sees himself as being stuck with it because he is aging and there is little time left to change for the better. He is, in fact, experiencing narcissistic loss.
Advancing age must necessarily deal with all manner of loss: loss of looks; loss of self confidence as one’s image fades; loss of physical strength. For someone with a strong sense of self, the loss on all fronts at the same time can create a crisis; a turning point where self analysis implements a recovery of self worth and self love.
Narcissists display a plethora of less than attractive personality traits, the worst of which are arrogance; superiority; childish and attention seeking behavior; bullying of others; the delusion that only ultra intelligent people can understand them and many more (DSM-IV). As narcissists age, these poor social qualities seldom fade and sometimes intensify as the narcissist finds himself on the wrong side of fifty and having to deal with the onset of advancing age.
Baby boomers who are narcissistic have a fear of getting old and demonstrate this fear in a number of unattractive ways, many of which include bullying other people who are close to them. It is very common for someone with narcissistic tendencies to compare their own ‘happy’ circumstances with someone living in a less than comfortable environment. This comparison boosts their own confidence that they have achieved an acceptable level of success and makes them feel better about their own shortcomings.
Incredibly, many people with a narcissistic strain tend to live to be a very great age. More sceptical onlookers put the longevity down to stubbornness, i.e. a refusal to lie down and die but of course there is no scientific reason why such people should enjoy a longer life expectancy, except possibly that they take better care of themselves than non-narcissists might. Baby boomers are being watched with interest to see if those who suffer from narcissism are going to display a propensity for living longer than anyone else just to spite them! So far, boomers are too young for a conclusive comparison and we will just have to wait to see if we are all outlived by strong and resilient boomer narcissists.
The Psychological Article on Narcissistic Loss for Baby Boomers is part of Boomer Yearbook’s continuing series of baby boomers psychological coaching tips and how to alleviate elderly problems. We believe knowledge is power. We’d love to hear what you think.
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