The media have been remarkably persistent in searching for a diagnosis for the presidential nominee of the Republican Party. In my nearly 60 years of professional life, I have most carefully avoided crossing the ethical bounds of making armchair evaluation and issuing diagnoses. Now, I am beginning to feel that in the case of our Republican presidential candidate, it is unethical not to issue a diagnosis.
Much has been written and said about the man’s narcissism. But it is much worse. It is characterological malignant narcissism, a diagnosis developed by Freud and later by a couple of British psychiatrists who thought folks like Adolph Hitler, Ivan the Terrible and several Qajar shahs of Persia fit the toxic and pathological profile of those afflicted with this disorder.
The prognosis is guarded if not hopeless. Voters beware!
Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry, UNC School of Medicine