Trump is regularly described as a narcissist by journalists, authors, and mental health professionals.
Narcissism is a term that has both colloquial connotations and a psychiatric definition. Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary defines narcissism as, "egoism, egocentrism," and "love of or sexual desire for one's own body." The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) defines Narcissistic Personality Disorder as:
A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following:
- Has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)
- Is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love
- Believes that he is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions)
- Requires excessive admiration
- Has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations
- Is interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends
- Lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others
- Is often envious of others or believes others are envious of him or her
- Shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes
- Often mild to moderate paranoia, that others are out to do him in.
- Predominant “name dropper” boasting or suggestion association with people or affiliations of importance.
2016.07.22 Washington Post columnist Amy Ellis Nutt asks "Is Donald Trump a textbook narcissist?" Clinicians provide examples of Trump's behavior that could be signs of narcissistic personality disorder such as "the tweet Trump sent out just hours after the Orlando nightclub massacre.... 'Appreciate the congrats for being right on radical Islamic terrorism.'" washingtonpost.com 2016.07.25 In “The Art of the Deal,” Tony Schwartz, Trump's ghost writer, helped create the myth that Trump is a charming business genius; now he calls him unfit to lead. newyorker.com 2016.12.01 Trump kicks off a "Thank You" tour so he can revel in crowds, boast in person, and disparage Hillary Clinton and the media. nytimes.com (See also 2016 Election, Unprecedented Actions, Attempts to Discredit Media) 2016.12.17 Huffington Post contributor Richard Greene publishes a letter from three professors of psychiatry to President Barack Obama calling on him to conduct a full psychiatric and medical evaluation of Trump. huffingtonpost.com 2017.02.01 Trump holds a listening session on Black History Month, devoting his opening remarks to himself. washingtonpost.com (See also Black Americans, First 100 Days) 2017.02.02 Trump promotes his TV show at the National Prayer Breakfast. theatlantic.com (See also Conflicts of Interest) 2017.02.17 Trump interrupts and scolds a Jewish reporter who asks about efforts to stem anti-Semitism, tells him to sit down and be quiet, and complains that he felt insulted by the question. nytimes.com (See also Attempts to Discredit Media) 2017.02.18 Christie says Trump made him order the meatloaf at White House luncheon, while other guests were allowed to make their own choices. bostonglobe.com 2017.02.28 Trump says he can take criticism when it is justified, but he asserts that has never happened. washingtonpost.com (See also Attempts to Discredit Media)