A malignant narcissist may appear highly socialized. But don't let her exterior charm fool you. Inside is a dangerous predator whom, apparently, cannot survive long without someone to devour. Essentially, these individuals are high-functioning sociopaths. Even though they may be married with children, or work in a professional capacity, they don't adhere to normal social etiquette that everyone else is expected to follow.
For instance, if you befriend someone, there is the unspoken assumption that she has your best interests at heart. Her words are supposed to match her actions. If she says, "You're my best friend," she's supposed to also want your greater good. A morally disordered person, however, doesn't operate by these rules. She may smile at you, give you gifts and pretend to be on your side. At the same time, she's plotting ways to set you up for a big fall.
This is why it behooves us all to learn the warning signs of malignant narcissism, which is frighteningly common. Some psychologists believe that 1 out of every 25 people have abnormal character traits that put them on the narcissist/sociopath spectrum. However, others believe that this figure is on the low side. It may very well be, as morally disordered people don't tend to advertise their condition. So the rest of us must be very careful sharing secrets with a new acquaintance, as anything you say to a malignant narcissist will later be used to undermine and discredit you.
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