The Mid-Range Narcissist




Meet Malcolm the Mid-Range Narcissist. Say hello Malcolm.


Ever obliging is Malcolm, part of his charm. He doesn’t have the ubermensch mentality of the Greater and nor is he governed by the almost rash instinctive behaviour of the Lesser. Malcolm is not so much defined by what he is, but by what he is not.

“Isn’t that right Malcolm?”

“Isn’t what right my dear?”

“You are a Mid-Range Narcissist.”

Malcolm laughs. It is an affable laugh. He knows that a veneer of self-effacement is effective to get what he wants. He is not prone to the wild outlandish boasts of the Lesser (based on what he thinks he is and therefore says as such as a matter of immediate response) or the Greater (who actually has the achievements and accomplishments to back up those boasts, but boasts about them the Greater always must).

“Hey, what can I say, I like to look good and you know, you have to love yourself before you can love anybody else, that’s what I always say.”

You see, Malcolm thinks that is what a narcissist is. Somebody who loves themselves. He lacks the higher function to know what it really means and lacks the cunning to know it himself but to deny it to those who would seek to topple him. He has some understanding so the comment does not present as a criticism to him, but since he has a moderate degree of function, he knows enough to use it to maintain his façade of being a decent, likeable and reliable fellow.

“You are a likeable chap, I must say.”

“Why thank you and may I say how lovely you look today.”

“That’s most kind, mind you, you are not the first person to compliment me on my appearance.”

Let’s see how he responds to that little piece of provocation. Did you see it? There was a flash of the inner fury but he kept it under control. Watch again. You see the sudden frown and the narrowing of the eyes as his jealousy started to climb inside of him as he felt the injury from this criticism. My comment suggested that someone else might be interested in me, that I am not just Malcolm’s. Of course, it was just a well-meant and polite compliment, but like all of their kind, Malcolm views the world from a position of suspicion and wariness. Wariness is an apt description for Malcolm. He doesn’t erupt in the way Lee the Lesser might have done if I had made the same remark. Lee would have responded with insulting questions to my comment. The Greater would show no sign of concern but file the remark away to be used at the appropriate time, when the moment is exactly right. Anyway, let’s get back to Malcolm. There is that flash of fury but he has enough control to keep it held back. For now. He won’t let it go though, he cannot.

“Oh really, who said that?”

He asks in a tone of relative disinterest but he is dying to know. He wants to know because he feels uncomfortable at this revelation. He does not know precisely why, although he knows he has to be wary about someone interfering with his partner because after all, he wants to maintain his façade of family man with the dedicated wife and so forth. Steady Malcolm who knows he is not amongst the elite of the world, but he is also far from the underclass too. He has abilities and people should recognise that. Okay, he is not the best, but he is still good, very good actually.

“Oh you know the attendant at the petrol station, he chats to me every time I am in there, he probably fancies me.”

There it is again. The brief look of consternation. The fury is rising but he is managing to keep a grip on it, but he won’t be able to do so for long. He does not want to erupt, he knows that will not do, that is not how he behaves, but he knows he needs to do something to counter this threat. He does not like the fact that I am accepting compliments from this interloper, I should only receive them from him.

“Yes well, I was told by Lucy at the florists that I look ten years younger than my real age.”

There we are. He is switching to an alternative fuel source. His level of function allows him to rely on a past event and still draw fuel from it. The Lesser would not be able to do that. Firstly, his fury would have erupted already and secondly even if it had not, he would struggle to bring up the previous compliment. His mind does not work that way. Malcolm can though and this is his way of switching the spotlight back on to him. He is also looking to get a reaction from me as well to provide him with some fuel. Let’s pretend I haven’t heard him.

“Yes the guy at the garage, Luke he is called, strapping lad, so pleasant. He always tells me that my hair is looking nice or that I smell gorgeous. He fair makes my day.”

“Yes well he can’t be too bright though can he if he is working in a garage.”

Malcolm doesn’t say it as a question but it’s a statement. He is losing control; the fury is coming. His comment had a dual purpose. You see, his mid-range function provides him with some weaponry in that regard. He wanted to cut down my comment in order to provoke a reaction from me but also by stating that Luke is not very bright he is undermining the compliments that Luke has sent my way. He’s a little bit clever with it you see.

“Oh, he just works there in between his studies. He is going to be an architect, he wants to show me some of his designs, I think I might do that.”

Let’s push it a little more. You can see Malcolm’s face is now set in a frown. He doesn’t like it at all that I am not giving him any fuel and moreover by fawning over Luke I am implicitly criticising Malcolm, at least in his mind that is the case.

Malcolm won’t respond in an outwardly aggressive manner. It’s there if he is really pushed, if he feels cornered in some way or has a frantic need for fuel then the fury will erupt as heated fury and he will lash out. He can only keep the fury under control for a short while. The Lesser can barely do so. The Greater can and will or will not, dependent on how the Greater has calculated whether the unleashing of the fury will provide him with the greatest return at that instant. Malcolm is caught between the two. He can exert some control but not enough to really deliver and savage aggression is rarer with him. Watch now and see how his ignited fury manifests.

Do you see? He has snatched up his ‘phone and rings one of his secondary sources. He knows he does not like this feeling of being ignored and he knows that to deal with it he needs attention from somewhere else. He does not know it as fuel of course, only that when this happens, if I, his primary source, is letting him down, he has to either up his game with me and/or draw attention from somewhere else.

“Hi Janice, just wondering if you were still on for lunch today?”

There’s no arranged lunch but he knows that Janice likes him, he makes sure that this remains the case and she is usually available. Notice the sideways glance to ensure I have heard him. There are not the bold assertive moves of the Lesser (through instinct) or the Greater (through calculation) but the wary steps that are the hallmark of the Mid-Range Narcissist.

Janice is cooing down the ‘phone and he feels better already but he also wants a reaction from me.

“Who are you calling?” I ask in a loud voice.

“Yes I thought so too Janice, thanks for saying that, I appreciate that.” He is ignoring me. I repeat the question but there is no response as he continues to talk into the ‘phone and lap up the fuel from Janice whilst enjoying my irked expression. This is a silent treatment from him as he refuses to acknowledge me. The Mid-Range uses the silent treatment more than any other cadre of narcissist because the Mid-Range is a creature who is passive-aggressive. The Lesser uses them, of course he does, but they tend to be short-lived. The Lesser will storm out of the house and disappear to a friend or a bar for an afternoon. The Greater will organise the silent treatment and apply it for maximum effect, it will not be a knee jerk reaction. The Greater will apply them for a long time as well but does not use them as often as the Mid-Range. The silent treatment is the main method of manipulation for the Mid-Range Narcissist. This is because it allows him to exert control, it can be used whilst preserving the façade (there won’t be a sudden eruption and storming away with slammed doors and cries of “You’ll never see me again”) but rather he will quietly depart for a period of time, or more likely use the present silent treatment. The Mid-Range is a sulker. He has enough control to sit and say nothing to you and drink up the fuel as you keep badgering him. He can sit and sulk for hours, days if need be. He can breeze around the house as if you aren’t there. Yes, Malcolm the Mid-Range Narcissist revels in the effect of his silent treatments and his dual approach here is providing dividends for him.

I walk over to him and stand in front of him, hands on hips. He sees the gesture and this fuels him further but to the him it is as if I am not there. He just looks through me. Again this is some of the discipline that I afforded by him by virtue of being Mid-Range.

He ends the call and walks off ignoring my comments as they drift fuel-filled through the air to him. He won’t shout back (he rarely does) he knows it is more effective to sulk and also then the neighbours won’t hear so he remains seen as pleasant, good neighbour Malcolm. He will probably head next door and hide there with Margaret for a couple of hours. He is good at cultivating a wide range of fuel sources. The Lesser keeps his circles tighter, lacking the discipline to operate too many fuel lines. The Greater of course has hundreds of fuel lines because he can draw them in through his outlandish greatness, his achievements and golden accomplishments. The Mid-Range doesn’t shine as bright but he has charm and ability which he uses to develop many different fuel sources and he can always rely on them. He does not have a high turn-over, keeping many of them in the golden period for years. The Mid-Range is most likely to have long-standing friends going years back. The Lesser and Greater may have as well, but not in the same number of the length of time as the Mid-Range.

So, Malcolm will be away giving me the silent treatment as he draws fuel from Margaret and then Janice. He knows how his silent treatment affects me and that is why he also uses it so often. Oh well, that’s my day spoiled already and he knows it. I suppose I had better go and fill up the car with fuel. I know a good garage and a sympathetic ear to hear my woes.

34 thoughts on “The Mid-Range Narcissist

  1. ava101 says:

    It is possible to talk to a mid range about people who have no empathy and him saying that they are unbelievable, that it is hardly imaginable that someone has no empathy like he does. And that he believes it himself. Is that right, HG?

    1. HG Tudor says:


      1. ava101 says:

        Thank you. This is really hard to grasp.

  2. ANM says:

    except I am way hotter looking than hillary

  3. An_eternal_student says:

    I’m curious: does the greater school have the know how to act like a mid range in order to deflect and elicit pity in high stress situations?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      The Greater would not act like a Mid Range Narcissist, it is beneath us.

      1. Jenna says:

        I believe u kind of dislike cowardly mid-rangers, correct?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          There is no kind of about it Jenna. Of course, I will take their fuel though.

          1. Jenna says:

            If they have much fuel to offer – perhaps fury, irritation, expression of envy, golden prd fakeness. I have read ‘when 2 narcs collide.’ I need to read it again.

      2. Dr. Harleen Quinzel PsyD. says:

        I hope you piss off at least one midranger a day lmao…

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Easily achieved.

      3. ANM says:

        When an Empath goes supernova, does the Empath’s narcissistic traits have a lower, mid range, greater status. I am a Magnet Empath, but whenever I have been in Supernova, Narcissist say I act a bit like Hillary Clinton. In a matter of fact, Trump and Clinton Election Debates looked exactly like my ex and I in mediation.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          No, they don’t ANM.

  4. Brian says:

    Just went no contact with a male midranger
    -very charming and good with conversation
    -friendly during the day but ignores you at night
    -subtle cold shoulder, talking to one person and ignoring another
    -does obvious mirroring, takes on your opinions, gets angry at things you are angry at
    -sudden out of proportion anger if questioned or asked to do something

  5. K says:

    This is all accurate and my MMRN could shred people so fast it would make your head spin. His mother sulked; he didn’t and I was very lucky in that respect, however, he seethed with anger often, but he could hide it pretty well. Below are the sentences that remind me of him the most.

    1. He knows he does not like this feeling of being ignored
    2. he wants to maintain his façade of family man
    3. He just looks through me
    4. He does not have a high turn-over, keeping many of them in the golden period for years.
    5. Malcolm views the world from a position of suspicion and wariness. Wariness is an apt description for Malcolm

  6. kimmichaud1 says:

    Mine is definitely a midranger I have one tiny suggestion I noticed both here and on the YouTube channel the pictures chosen for the midranger are always overweight middle aged unattractive dour looking men mine was quite dashing are midrangers supposed to be unattractive the pixs of the lessors are pictured as a cross between psycho and criminals I find to be accurate

    1. Jenna says:

      Kim, my ex-mid is somatic. He is v handsome, slim, tall, muscular, stylish. He follows a strict diet and workout regime. Perhaps cerebrals will care less abt their appearance.

    2. Emily Lancer says:

      HG identified my experience as being with a mid ranger. Mirrored me easily after making friends on FB and reading my liberal, feminist/humanist views, weak spots and empath mind. Triangulated my relationship with my husband and ended up making me co-dependent. I adopted a more narcissistic attitude. I shudder to think what I could have lost. He was overweight, the higher side of middle aged and not attractive at all. Told me his daughters uni friends think he’s a DILF. It’s amazing how Narcs put the blinkers on you. We had no physical relationship, just texting. I was devalued and smeared by lies after I questioned something he had done….and told to stay away by his wife who believed his story. I have done what has been asked obviously as I want no contact but now his wife keeps turning up on my turf. Its a new development, I can’t even fathom why. No idea why a IPS who hates me suddenly now puts herself in my presence? very odd!!

    3. My ex lower mid range narc was gorgeous (and a somatic….and dumb as a stump). I think looks will run the gamut with mid rangers.

      1. And today is one year since our break up- I almost didn’t realize it! Thanks again to HG for all of the knowledge.

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Well done on almost not realising it. You are welcome.

  7. mistynolan01 says:

    Sooooo … I’ve equivocated, but now I am convinced, X narc was a mid ranger! Silly boy! No wonder I was never really impressed, never viewed him in the same glorious light with which he viewed himself.

    It’s true, he had many friends going back years. His neighbors liked him and saw him as one of the good guys, smiling, always a good word to say.

    They didn’t see the sulking, insecure and reactive little boy who pouted and went silent when his wittle feewings were hurt. They didn’t see the mean little tricks he played and after, hiding his hand with an innocent look. Riiiiiiight. LOL!

    He was so easy to manipulate. And I did it with glee.

    I DESERVED the disengagement — oh yes I did! I was a bad girl, a mocking, sassy ‘lil thing and I deserved the hurt, the utter surprise of his abandonment.

    And now knowing that his “Disengagement” was really a frantic flight to be out of reach of my mocking disdain, puts one huge smile on my face.


    Nailed it, HG.

  8. K says:


  9. IJ says:

    Getting closer! I have ruled out that he (mine) is not a lesser. Is Malcolm a LMRN, MMRN or UMRN? HG… you are keeping me up too late all the time lately. I am thankful for the education and knowledge though. Every time I want to contact him, I just come here and read more. I think he is at least an UMRN. I can see the Fury boiling below the surface if I say something wrong (RIGHT – but wrong to HIM…). He almost shakes with containing it and nostrils flare and his eyes are like dark ice. But he can usually maintain composure. On to reading about the Greater… maybe I can figure this out.

  10. veronica says:

    yes thank you HG! please keep writing about mid rangers. All my exs seem to be mid rangers.

  11. Lisa says:

    Hi HG. I recently met someone. I suspect a narc but not sure about a few things. One question is however, his personality in general. Very bland. Very beige. No sense of humour as such. Its like you want to see him drunk or at best, stick a pin in him! He’s so laid back, he even walks slow. Just goes through the motions of life with no spark.
    I found all this to be rather odd. Could this be a red flag in itself? Or just a trait of his boring self?
    Thanks as usual…

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Yes, you have met a zombie.

      1. Lisa says:

        Thank you HG. Note to self: stay away from the zombies….

  12. Insatiable Learner says:

    Hi HG, I presume a mid ranger, who truly thinks he is a good person, really believes that his new IPPS is the one and the relationship will work out until things inevitably go south in which case it’s all her fault naturally. Is this correct? Thank you!

    1. HG Tudor says:


  13. RS says:

    That is the ex I was with…exactly!! Have you two met?😄😜

  14. Liz says:

    Hi HG,

    When mid rangers lie, how are they not aware that they are lying? I know you have written that they have a different perspective than the rest of us, but I still don’t understand how someone cannot know they’re lying. For example, if you slept with another person and say you didn’t – but the narcissist knows he/she did, they must recognize that it’s a lie, right?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      No because the need to maintain the upper hand ‘kicks in’ through denial and then defection etc (see the article ‘The Narcissist’s Twin Lines of Defence’) so that the self-defence mechanism takes over before there can be any consideration of whether there is a lie or not.

  15. Diva says:

    This is the very article I read when I realised beyond any reasonable doubt that I had what transpired to be a midrange narc on my hands. In fact the narc that I knew could have been the very person this article was based on…..he was so true to form. After I read this I actually sent midrange narc a text, that stated I had read an article that could have been written about him…… he never even asked what that article was about. I have no doubt that someone else had already tried to enlighten him previously and he was afraid of what I may have worked out. I immediately went no contact after I raised a few of his narc traits…..mainly silent treatment and sulking……. he was severely wounded but I have managed to deflect and avoid him successfully to date. I make it sound far easier than it actually was. Once I had midrange narc sussed and sorted to some degree…….then I had to come to terms with the realisation of the other narcs that have somehow invaded my space throughout my life…..that is what I am currently working through now…..I have no doubt this will be an ongoing saga for some time yet…… is nothing short of, and maybe even literally, a can of worms…….Diva

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