The Gray Girlfriend's Guide to Divorce

...and Life Thereafter

Narcissism by The Numbers

by Amy Lawson, MBA, CDFA®, RTT Practitioner®, C.Hyp

So, let’s talk about narcissism. You’ve probably heard the term frequently thrown around in conversations about difficult people or toxic relationships, especially in the divorce arena. But just how prevalent is narcissism in our society? Let’s dive into the numbers and shed some light on this complex personality trait.

If the mere mention of “numbers” instantly puts your brain in a fog for fear of hearing Charlie Brown’s teacher talking (“Wha wa, wa wa ,wa”), don’t worry, even the most math-phobic among us will quickly grasp these figures.

First, Let’s Set The Stage

Picture the vast and diverse landscape of the United States, home to approximately 335 million individuals. That’s a LOT of people, each with their own quirks and personalities.

Now, let’s zoom in on the adult population – 262 million strong. Among these adults, about 6.2% exhibit traits commonly associated with narcissism. Surprising, right?

That 6.2% translates to a WHOPPING 16,249,148 individuals who display narcissistic tendencies. Yes, you read that correctly: over sixteen million people in the US alone are trying to navigate life with a personality predisposed to self-absorption, entitlement, and a lack of empathy.

The Numbers

Starting to feel lost in the math? No worries, here are the numbers again in a nutshell:

335 million: That’s the total population of the United States, including men, women, and children.

262 million: This is the number of adults in the US.

6.2%: Put 100 people in a room and 6 of them exhibit narcissistic traits.

16,249,148: This is the jaw-dropping tally of narcissists within the US alone.

Are we back on track with the math? Good! I knew you’d get it!

What The Numbers Tell Us

Now, here’s where it gets real. Narcissism doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Whether it’s a family member, romantic partner, colleague, or friend, chances are you’ve encountered someone with narcissistic tendencies at some point in your life. And if you have, you know firsthand the challenges and crazy-making complexities that come with trying to navigate these relationships.

If you have first-hand experience, then you are well aware that narcissists wield their charm and charisma to manipulate those around them, leaving a trail of emotional wreckage in their wake.

You are well aware that their insatiable need for validation and admiration drives them to exploit everyone around them, undermining other’s achievements, and disregarding other’s feelings without a second thought.

You are well aware that you made an unfortunate series of choices that entangled you and that your mental and emotional well-being were the exorbitant price you paid.

You are well aware that the gaslighting, manipulation, and emotional abuse left you drained, confused, and doubting your own reality… that you lived in a perpetual state of fight/flight/freeze mode that literally changed your brain – it literally enlarged your amygdala, the part of your brain that keeps you in a state of high alert.

You Can Recover

But here’s the silver lining: You don’t have to remain trapped in the cycle of narcissistic abuse. Despite the impact of the hellish behavior of these individuals, there is hope for healing and reclaiming your sense of self-worth.

If you or someone you love are ensnared in the web of a narcissistic relationship, know that you, or your loved one, are not alone. There are resources, support networks, and professionals (like me!) who specialize in helping survivors of narcissistic abuse rebuild their lives and regain their autonomy.

It’s essential to recognize that healing of any kind, including narcissistic abuse, is a journey – one that requires courage, self-reflection, and resilience. But with dedication and the right support, it is possible to break free from the grip of narcissism and rediscover the joy, fulfillment, and peace that are rightfully yours.

So, if you’ve ever felt the weight of narcissistic influence bearing down on you, take heart. Although you may not recognize it at this moment, you have the strength within you to escape the chaos, reclaim your power, and create a life filled with love, authenticity, and real connection.

You are enough, my dear friend. YOU ARE ENOUGH. And the moment you embrace this truth, the whole world will know it, too.

Wishing you peace & plenty of courage to choose YOU!


About the Author

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Amy Lawson, MBA, CDFA®, RTT Practitioner®, C.Hyp

As a divorced baby boomer, Amy, an independent investment advisor since 2001, formally expanded her services in 2016 to help older women navigate the daunting financial minefield of divorce after meeting numerous smart, well-educated, divorced women who lacked the funds to secure their financial futures.  She understands that for older women facing divorce, achieving an equitable divorce settlement is the first step.

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