This is something I’ve been chewing for many months: how narcissism and autism come to meet. Because “narcissistic” is one of the traits that the psychobabble-boneheads have turned into something repellant, a disorder, any autistic reading this might immediately get big on the defensive and silently scream at me not to go calling them a narcissist. I believe that the psychobabbles have recently removed narcissism from the DSM (their twisted book of mental diseases), but it’s way too late. They already made “narcissist” (and a lot of other human traits too) a dirty word a long time ago.
So, to any autistic readers who are now screaming at me, please calm down. Know first that I’m not only calling you narcissists, I’m calling myself one too. Because if a person has any degree of autism, a condition in which the neurobiological map inclines the person to a lesser degree of interest in other people and their activities, and to a greater degree of interest in one’s own inner life, how can some level of narcissism, of extra interest in the self (autos), not be present? I go over it and over it, and can never find a logical way out of the conclusion that if one is to some degree autistic, then one is also, ipso facto, to some degree narcissistic.
In reaching this conclusion, I class all autistics as narcissists, including myself. But unlike many others in this world who swallow whatever the psychobabbles hand down without question, I decided years ago, even before I ever heard of Asperger’s or knew that I have it, that narcissism is not a mental illness, but one of many, many possible human personality traits. And a relatively harmless personality trait, to my mind. So let’s not beat ourselves up for being autistic and narcissistic, and let’s try not to let anyone else beat us up for it either. Haven’t we all known plenty of non-autistic people who were dedicated narcissists too? It’s not a trait that shows up only in autistics, but I do think that you can’t be autistic without it.
I don’t have scientific studies for this opinion of mine. It’s simply a conclusion I can’t avoid when I add what I know about the workings of narcissism to what I know about the workings of autism. It’s two-plus-two-is-four thing for me, but I suppose some abstract mathematician will jump up and try to prove to me that somewhere in parallel universe, two plus two is not four. Rotsa ruck.