Narcissism : causes, types, treatment for the novice therapist

An emotional trauma that happens to the young child at any age from birth to four or five years causes Narcissistic injury if other factors in the mother-infant relationship are detrimental to the welfare of the infant. Of the factors which can cause such a Narcissistic injury to the infant, the most significant is the presence of an unhealthy form of the Narcissistic character disorder in the mother. Should such an injury occur, the infant or child becomes fixated at the developmental stage during which the injury occurred. The etiology of Narcissism, then, must be understood within the context of Freudian developmental stages, both because Narcissism can develop during any stage and because the later expression of the child's Narcissism will reflect the stage at which the injury occurred. The Narcissistic character traits range from the healthy and normal to the severely incapacitating and pathological; these traits are referred to in the following fashion in this thesis: Healthy, Neurotic, Phallic, Narcissistic, Narcissistic Character, Narcissistic Investment in Thinking, the Borderline Personality, the Normal Suppliant Personality, Schizophrenic Personality, Pathological Personality, and Paranoid Personality. (See more in text.)