Do you have a friend who is perpetually taking selfies? Whose Instagram account is inundated with photos of herself? Who has to stop dead in her tracks every time she passes a mirror?
Well, chances are your friend is a narcissist ... and you probably are, too. Because there's only one type of person who genuinely enjoys spending time with a narcissist, and that is—you guessed it!—another narcissist.
The research, published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, stats that "narcissists of a feather flock together." You know your buddy wouldn't dare make fun of you for taking a selfie in public because he does it all the time.
It's sort of like: you support my hugely inflated ego, and I'll support yours.
For the study, the researchers reviewed surveys from 290 pairs of best friends that measure psychology's “Dark Triad” (narcissism, Machiavellianism, and psychopathology), along with "Big Five" personality traits (extroversion, agreeableness, openness, conscientiousness and neuroticism).
What they found was that opposites do not, in fact, attract. People who ranked high on narcissism tended to have friends who were also narcissists. This was true for both single gender and mixed gender friendships, but the narcissism effect was strongest in all-male friendships.
This shouldn't be all that surprising though, since past research has shown that people with similar personality traits tend to gravitate toward each other. What would be interesting is to ask participants how satisfied they were with these friendships.
Do they feel like their friend hogs airtime? What about whether the friend is really, truly listening during a conversation?
All signs point to "unlikely," as they're both probably too caught up in themselves to notice any slights, let alone feel threatened by what their friend is doing. It's basically the equivalent of being best friends with yourself—and what narcissist wouldn't want that?