Mom-and-pop narcissism: The impact of attention seeking and grandiosity on couples’ experience of the transition to parenthood

Haran Sened, Eran Bar-Kalifa, Rony Pshedetzky-Shochat, Marci Gleason, Eshkol Rafaeli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Various studies have demonstrated associations between personality disorders and relationship satisfaction. The authors examine the associations between attention seeking and grandiosity, both features of narcissistic personality disorder, and relationship satisfaction before and after the transition to parenthood. The authors then expand their analysis to parental satisfaction and postpartum depression (PPD). Nonclinical couples (N = 103 couples) expecting their first child completed measures of grandiosity, attention seeking, and relationship satisfaction before birth, and of relationship satisfaction, parental satisfaction, and PPD symptoms 3 months afterward. Attention seeking was associated with less parental satisfaction and more PPD symptoms, and with less prepartum relationship satisfaction for participants’ partners. For men, attention seeking was also associated with prepartum relationship satisfaction. Grandiosity was associated with a decrease in relationship satisfaction after birth, although, surprisingly with fewer PPD symptoms for participants’ partners. The authors discuss how these findings might be related to changes in social support and work–life balance during the transition to parenthood.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)499-518
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Personality Disorders
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by a grant from the US-Israel Binational Science Fund (BSF) awarded to the fourth and fifth authors and by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation awarded to the fifth author. The first author is grateful to the Azrieli Foundation for the award of an Azrieli Fellowship supporting his work.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Guilford Press.


  • Close relationships
  • Narcissism
  • Personality disorders
  • Postpartum depression
  • Transition to parenthood


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