I'm looking for a name/category/definition of (personality?) disorder(s) that can be described with the following traits in one's (imaginary person) social/human behavior:

  • this person brings up and emphasizes his own, (according to him) superior achievements whenever another person around him mentions their own success/results/etc. (relevant fact: this person's statements about his own achievements are usually true, so there is no or little exaggeration);
  • still, this person does this in a way that likely hurts other's feelings or self-esteem (this person does this regardless of who's the other half, like friends/partner/family), maybe even permanently;
  • when this person has to do something with the achievements of others, he also emphasizes his own role behind the success of the other half (may even claim that the other person would not have been able to achieve their results without his assistance/inspiration);
  • finally, though this may be a bit further from the previous points, this person may also inspire other people to start doing the same things that he's already started earlier (through which he may have an edge in terms of performance, quicker results, etc.) - e.g., a hobby or a sport.

As a follow-up question: what would be an ideal strategy to deal with (from friends/family perspective) such a person's behavior (preferably in a way that noone gets hurt)? Note please that I'm not looking for an answer/advice related to any personal issues or situation, the above scenarios are strictly hypothetical.

As a 2nd follow-up question: I'd be also interested in the origin of such a situation/traits (like how one would develop such a behavior, e.g. through childhood events or parental issues).

My research so far: tried to look for an answer online by summarizing the main points and got to "Narcissistic personality disorder" which (according to this site) is a mental condition in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for excessive attention and admiration.

However, I'm not 100% sure that the above traits completely match this definition since they emphasize one's superior results/role in other's success and usually are combined with mean/humiliating remarks. Also, this person rarely steers a conversation etc. in a way so that he'll have the attention/focus.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ This sure sounds like a self-help question, which is off-topic for this forum. $\endgroup$
    – Arnon Weinberg
    Commented Dec 31, 2021 at 2:25
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ The primary practice in question is often called one-upmanship. As mentioned by @GinaHiattPhD, this comes from a place of insecurity. Specifically, hearing an accomplishment of another triggers a feeling of insecurity, where a one-upping reflex acts as a coping mechanism. $\endgroup$
    – Michael
    Commented Dec 31, 2021 at 10:00

2 Answers 2


It's possible to have one or more traits of a personality disorder without qualifying for that personality disorder itself (see Merck Manual Overview of Personality Disorders for definitions of traits). The person you're describing does have certain narcissistic traits, and would probably be ultrasensitive about being criticized for it. In the situations you're describing, the best way to help the other person not feel bad is to redirect the conversation gently back to that person (the one who was speaking about themselves originally).

A good way to think about someone with this kind of trait is to see them as insecure and needing reassurance that they matter. At least, this will help you not dislike them when they thoughtlessly hurt others.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for pointing out the part about insecurity. Often persons exhibiting narcissistic behaviours are demonised, which is unfortunate considering that insecurity is at the root of narcissism. If the goal is resolving the problem, focusing on the core issue is key. Building walls will make things worse. $\endgroup$
    – Michael
    Commented Dec 31, 2021 at 10:20

I think it is narcissistic behaviour. I would suggest you take a look at a book called the laws of human nature. Such behaviour is shown there and it is mentioned repeatedly. It also explains where such behaviour comes from. Follow this link https://b-ok.org/


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