What are the signs of someone raised by a narcissist?

In this brief article we are going to answer the question ‘’What are the signs of someone raised by a narcissist?’’ We will explain what narcissistic personality disorder is and how to tell if you were raised by narcissistic parents.

What are the signs of someone raised by a narcissist?

The signs of someone raised by a narcissist are:

  • No self-awareness
  • You have felt that you were more your parent’s partner than their child
  • You only feel good when you are successful
  • You are relentlessly competitive, or resentful, of your sibling

People who have had or have a narcissistic parent suffer from a series of effects on the way they see themselves and the world that often lead to very intense suffering. Generally, they are not aware of this until they are in a therapeutic process for their own psychological discomfort. However, when your development has been influenced by a narcissistic personality, there are several striking characteristics that may appear.

Since a narcissistic person will have the whole family at his or her disposal to get his or her needs, an adult raised by a narcissist will be easily trampled on, since he or she has always learned to be a means for others to get what they want.

4 signs that you were raised by a narcissistic parent

Here are 4 signs that you were raised by narcissistic parents.

No self-awareness

In this way, a person raised by someone narcissistic doesn’t have a strong self-awareness, just as he does not recognize his needs, or what he wants. The narcissistic parent will often try to live the achievements that he or she has not achieved through his or her children, because no matter how much he or she has achieved, it will never be enough.

Thus, during development, children learn to satisfy only this parent instead of themselves, so there is no room for their own needs.

You have felt that you were more your parent’s partner than their child

It’s common that if you have had a narcissistic parent you feel almost more like a partner than a child in their care.

Since narcissistic people require all the attention of the people around them and that these meet their needs for recognition and achievement, the children of narcissistic people may find themselves in a role of helping to make sure that everything is okay and that the person does not feel any setbacks.

They take on the role of keeping everything in order and solving some things even before there has been a problem.

You only feel good when you are successful

Moreover, the only way you feel you are worth anything is through success. Narcissistic parents, either explicitly or implicitly, only see something positive in their children when it’s a demonstrable success, especially on a social level.

But they also apply this in a similar way to themselves, so as the child of someone who is narcissistic it is likely that the only value you see in yourself is in what you have achieved, and often you will not feel it’s enough either.

What are the signs of someone raised by a narcissist?

You are relentlessly competitive, or resentful, of your sibling

Another characteristic you may perceive in yourself when you have been raised by a narcissistic parent is that you feel incredibly competitive with your peers or siblings. This personality style tends to motivate through comparison, as they do with themselves.

This is why even if it’s not in a conscious way (although it can also appear directly and consciously) narcissistic parents will constantly be making comparisons about the qualities of their children. This attitude leads to learning a sense of striving for recognition and a need to compete which usually becomes quite painful for the children.

How To Recover From Growing Up With A Narcissistic Parent?

Once you begin to recognize this in yourself and become aware that you have been raised by a narcissistic person, you begin to understand several things about how you may be hurting yourself because of those learnings made in very early stages.

To begin to manage these feelings, it’s true that simply knowing where that feeling of intense fear comes from when you are going to do something that can go wrong in itself can give us some degree of reassurance.

Sometimes it’s not enough to understand how a narcissistic person works to alleviate the symptoms that can come from being raised by one. There are several techniques you can try to manage the above and in any case, psychological help will always be positive to improve self-recognition and improve your self-esteem.

Practice mindfulness

The practice of mindfulness will lead to a greater awareness of our own emotions and mental states. In addition, if we can do this without judging these feelings, we will begin to see another way of perceiving our own needs that we have failed to learn through this style of parenting.

Applying dialectics

In dialectical behaviour therapy, dialectics is applied among the different strategies to increase well-being. This implies, among other things, that two opposite things can exist at the same time and that reality can thus be explained even more accurately. 

In this case, we could understand why that person behaves this way by learning what it has to do with narcissistic traits and at the same time wish for this to change.

Seek acceptance

Acceptance does not mean resigning ourselves to the situation. Nor does it mean that we are comfortable with it or that we agree with it. It simply means that we assume that it is a situation that happens and that we probably cannot change. Once we manage to accept that this happens, we can also look for other ways to face this situation so that it harms us as little as possible.

It’s difficult to discover that some of the most damaging ways we use with ourselves come from one of our parents not learning to manage their narcissism, but at least beginning to understand this can often be the first step in learning to make a change in these things that hurt us and start to feel better.

Frequently Asked Questions: What are the signs of someone raised by a narcissist?

How can you tell if someone is raised by a narcissist?

You can tell if someone is raised by a narcissist if they have:

  • A grandiose sense of self-importance.
  • A sense of entitlement.
  • Requires excessive admiration.
  • A lack of empathy.

How do you know if you were raised by narcissistic parents?

If you were raised by narcissistic parents, probably you have:

  • Negative relationship patterns
  • Self-blame, shame, and low self-esteem

What does narcissistic parenting look like?

These are the characteristics of narcissistic parents

  • They restrict freedom. 
  • They undermine their children’s self-esteem. 
  • They have a distorted image of themselves. 
  • Outwardly they are the perfect parents
  • They need to be validated.
  • They are experts at the blame game.

How does a narcissist treat their child?

A narcissistic parent will often abuse the normal parental role of guiding their children and being the primary decision maker in the child’s life, becoming overly possessive and controlling. T

What happens to someone raised by a narcissist?

The child typically suffers from low psychological well-being, such as low self-esteem, depression, and anxiety


10 Signs of a Narcissistic Parent. (2021). Retrieved August 2, 2022, from Psychology Today website: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/communication-success/201602/10-signs-narcissistic-parent

‌Almendrala, A. (2015, October 12). 6 Signs You Were Raised By A Narcissist. Retrieved August 2, 2022, from HuffPost website: https://www.huffpost.com/entry/6-ways-to-know-you-were-raised-by-narcissists_n_5616b091e4b0082030a18f72#:~:text=Narcissists%20tend%20to%20have%20an,for%20the%20other%20person’s%20experience.